The Dolores Batwing Top

Hello Sailor!

Hello Sailor!

Back in November, I won a Dolores Batwing Top pattern by Zoe Edwards from the So Zo…What Do You Know blog, with the caveat that I make up the garment and then blog about it in a timely manner. (I’m so sorry Zoe!!!!!).  I made the shirt and never posted it.  A million months later, here we are.  I cut myself a test garment out of a large thrifted men’s tee shirt, just in case it came out badly I would not have wasted much money.  Hey, what do you know, it fits really well!

The details: Dolores is a dolman-sleeved shirt meant for knit fabrics with two sleeve options and three length options–top, tunic, dress. It comes in UK sizes 8-16 and is a PDF download that you can print at home and assemble with tape; or have printed whole large-format at the copy shop. I had mine printed up at the office-supply store for about $7.

Grading out the hip on the Dolores.

Grading out the hip on the Dolores.

Changes I made: The size 16 pattern was not quite big enough for me, and I have a petite shoulder line, so I used a smaller size for the shoulder and graded it out. I added a bit of width from the armpit to hem and shortened the hem by 2″ to fit my 5;1″ height. I omitted the band on the short-sleeve option as it was a wearable muslin.

Verdict: The Dolores Batwing Top has turned out to be a great pattern to use again and again, incorporating small style changes  as mood or fabric dictates. I have made three so far; the burgundy (pictured), a long sleeve high-low hem version for my friend’s birthday, and a long sleeve in marled grey for myself for the fall.  Overall, I’d say a success. I love the ease of the tee-shirt with some waist-defining shaping and style.

Disclaimer: I was NOT compensated for this review. All statements and opinions are my own. I received the pattern for free as part of a promotional contest. (if anyone really wants to sponsor me, lets chat)  Shirt photos by Jen Helbert of Prjona Plym textile studio. 

If you can think it, you might do it.

Is it too late to make my sewing resolutions for the year? Last year’s went about 50% out the window. I decided to take a page from another blogger and choose a certain few patterns to make up this year, rather than just say “I’m gonna make pants” or something similar.  Not only that, but I am doing fit-muslins so that I can perfect the fit to my particular body and then have a pattern that I can use frequently to reproduce basic garments, like I have done with my pajama/shorty pattern.

Six patterns below  were chosen for several reasons: to fill gaps in my wardrobe, to perfect the fit on difficult to buy garments, and fulfill my need for appropriately sized vintage garments.  The reason for so many Simplicity patterns is simply that they went on sale for $1 apiece.  The two Decades of Style patterns were a bachelorette gift from my infinitely fashionable friend Rachel of Re/Dress, an awesomely positive plus-sized fashion company.  I have already started on muslins for the pencil skirt and pants.  Wish me luck!

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