Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Style Arc - Ivy Knit Top

Pattern: Ivy Knit Top - Style Arc
Fabric: Reversible Jersey Knit - Purple/Heather Gray - Joann's



Ladies and Gentleman, allow me to introduce to you... the Ivy Knit Top by Style Arc! I have noticed that this pattern company, and especially this top are a little scarce across the blogosphere (at least to my knowledge) so I'm going to go ahead and assume that not many of you have made this pattern. I could only find a couple versions of it around the interwebs, including Sue at Sew, Stash, Sew (love her designer inspiration photos) and Melissa at Fehr Trade (definitely digging the mustard and gray). I chose a delightfully drapey and thick knit that is... wait for it... reversible! That's right, one side with tiny stripes and one is solid. It is seriously soft and surprisingly warm - great for my freezing classroom (I really shouldn't complain, as mine is the only classroom with AC in the building....)  Speaking of AC, mine at home has been blowing a rogue pattern piece against a chair and it keeps freaking me out! I even know that's what it is and I can't stop thinking that maybe this time its really a mouse.... shuddder...

I guess I could get off the couch and put away that pattern piece.... yeaaaaah no.



What caught my eye about this pattern is the casual feel, the high-low hem and length, and the basically endless potential for fabric combos - stripes, solids, prints - with the colorblocking!  So I was sold on the pattern! But let's talk a little bit about the company, Style Arc:

- They are based in Australia - somewhat expensive shipping and longer wait time if you're in the USA - better to order several in one go, if you can (yes I ordered five patterns and had never tried this company before - call me irresponsible)
- Very modern, ready to wear styles - they even have style boards with celebrities in similar clothing!
- One size patterns - you pick the size based on the measurement chart and you are only sent that size. At first I was concerned about this, but actually it was really nice to only have to cut out one line/size (didn't have to trace anything) and it fit beautifully :)
- Instructions - When this pattern arrived in the mail I was surprised to find that EVERYTHING except the actual pattern itself was on a single sheet of letter paper. That includes the drawing, recommended fabric swatches (awesome, right?!), size chart, cutting layout, sewing instructions, etc.... everything you would find in a normal pattern. I did okay with this format but a beginning seamstress might need a little more guidance than the instructions provide
- Seam Allowances are 1/4", designed to be done easily with a serger. Too bad mine started having threading issues almost the minute I started this (thanks for nothing, Clarence), so I just used the zigzag stitch on Archibald - good old Archibald.
- And one more thing.... FREE PATTERN every month! That's right - every month there is a featured pattern that you can receive for free with any order. I got the Elizabeth Top pattern (SO CUTE! Can't wait to try it!)



Okay so back to this pattern! Here are the details:

Pattern: Style Arc Ivy Top
It is a knit top, in the "T shape of the moment" featuring new angled design lines, dropped shoulders, curved hemline and cuffed ¾ length sleeves.
Size: 8 (based on 34" bust measurement)

My Shape: Tall (6'0), pear shape, narrow shoulders, long torso

Fabric: AMAZING reversible jersey rayon knit - purple and heather gray stripes / solid
I used the striped side for the front and sleeves and the solid side for the back, neck, and cuff - perfect color-matching ;) 
View of inside side seam, pressed open
Size Alterations: None! Length is fine, but I might go an inch or two longer next time :)

Design Changes: None! Love the style as is!

Construction Notes: Oooookay as I mentioned above, the sewing instructions are a little scarce (not that this is a super complicated pattern). Here are a couple of tips if you are making this top:
- First one is my own dumb fault - using a reversible fabric means both sides are the right side... and wrong side... my first move was to sew the normal right sides together for the front and back before realizing that it should be "wrong" side to "right" side - WHAT - lol.  Sadly, due to this error and serging off the SA before my brain came back to the party, I ended up with a slightly higher shoulder seam and smaller armhole - oh well!
- Step 6 (fold the cuffs) - you must first fold hamburger style and stitch the short edges together, then fold hot dog style and press - again, brain had to come to the party for this one
- Step 8 I pressed the hem under 1/2" and sewed with a zigzag stitch on my normal sewing machine - no "zigzag machine" required here ;)
Ooooh hem!
I can fly! But see why I might add an extra inch next time ;)
Well I am happy to say that my first experience with the StyleArc pattern line has been a whopping success! I would definitely recommend this pattern as an easy beginning knit pattern. There are so many options! I want to try a print and a solid, or maybe even mix prints - WHAAAT? Don't get too crazy ;)


So have you ever made a Style Arc pattern? Are you tempted to try it? Tell me your thoughts! :)

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