This is the best thing I’ve sewn for a while

Ain’t it always the way? You sew a simple thing using simple fabric and it turns out killer. Nevermind all those fabulous prints and edgy designs I’m always seduced by and never end up wearing. Imma wear the shit out of this top.


This is Simplicity 1104, a Cynthia Rowley peplum tunic. (Even though I’ve sworn off buying Simplicity patterns online, I’m glad this one made it I made it into my stash before that.)


Simplicity 1104 Cynthia Rowley tunic

I made it with Ponte knit. Can I just take a minute to say how much Ponte knit ROCKS THE UNIVERSE? It is the most easy and forgiving fabric to sew, and a very flattering fabric to wear. It’s the kind of staple that should be in every sewist’s fabric stash — ready to be pulled out at a moment’s notice and sewn up fast into a satisfying piece of clothing. I mean, you don’t even have to pin this stuff together while you’re sewing. And it can be form fitting without revealing every last lump and bump underneath. PONTE KNIT FOR THE WIN!


The top features an invisible zipper in the back. For some reason I had it in my head that sewing invisible zippers was hard, but the directions in this pattern are detailed, and as long as you have an invisible zipper foot (you can buy plastic ones for a few dollars), it’s really not hard at all.


I made a couple of minor modifications: the pattern calls for a lining, which I left out; instead I just folded in the neckline and armholes and stitched them in place. The pattern also calls for binding on the bottom edge. I bought a couple different binding options but in the end I just decided to leave the bottom edge raw. Another win for Ponte knit — no fraying or curling! I also didn’t cut the neckline as deeply as indicated in the pattern, and I lengthened the bottom edge by an inch or two.


This is the perfect match for these pants I bought from Zara. I chose the pattern and the fabric specifically to go with the pants, and the outfit is definitely a winner.


Thanks for stopping by for a look!

Asymmetrical Striped Tunic

Burda, you had me at asymmetry. What’s with me and my strong attraction to asymmetry? I’m always drawn to asymmetric details in a pattern. Come to think of it, possibly even in husbands, too, as my guy’s got a wonderful lopsided grin.  Anyway! This tunic was on the cover of the January issue of Burda Style magazine. I love the stripes, I love sewing jersey, and of course, I love the asymmetrical hemline and ‘opposing’ bits of gathering at one shoulder and one hip.
Burda Style Striped Tunic

It came out more like a dress than a tunic–I didn’t think to make adjustments for length. The first Burda pattern I ever tried was this Paneled Sheath Dress, which was designed for Petites, and it came out fitting me like a glove. So I have to remember that Burda’s ‘average’ patterns are for gals who are taller than me at 5 foot 4 and a half. (Yes, that additional half inch is very important to me.)

Burda Striped Tunic

I want you to know the extreme peril I put myself in to take pictures of this! Minus 15 degrees Celsius as my husband was taking these pics, and you can almost see me muttering “hurry up! hurry up!”. Ah, life as a northern blogger.

For the record, I am completely OWNING those legwarmers. After having a pair of bright pink legwarmers around the time the movie Flashdance came out a million years ago, it took me a looooooooong time to consider them again as a reasonable possibility for a grown woman to wear. But I either arrive at work miserable and raging because my knees and thighs are frozen, or use those warmer-clad legs to strut around like I’m on a catwalk in the tundra. I choose the latter. (Although I must admit they don’t always prevent me from arriving at work miserable and raging, but that’s another story, and has more to do with the public transit system.)

I looooove the mod look the model is rocking in Burda’s pattern photograph. Anything 60’s inspired and I’m THERE. The black and white combo looks fabulous, too.


Burda Striped Tunic

I didn’t quite get the stripes matching up on the back left shoulder, but a girl can’t ask for everything from this universe.

The fabric is the same rayon jersey that I used for what turned out to be my favourite sewing project of all time (ok, in this case, “all time” means since I started sewing for real 9 months ago), this striped, asymmetric (shocker!) layered dress, Vogue 8904. The fabric is soft and drapey and really fantastic. I bought it from a store that reeks of skunk — no joke. The store is on a very busy street in Toronto, Queen Street West, and apparently some downtown urban hipster skunk sprayed at the front of the store one day last year and it has reeked ever since. It’s actually overwhelming when you walk in, as anyone who has ever encountered the smell of a skunk will know. Rather daring, possibly stupid of me to buy from there, no? I made sure to wash & sniff test the fabric before going ahead. I’m happy to report all’s well in the smell department on this one.

Burda Asymmetrical Striped Tunic

The pattern does lend itself to making one’s tummy look a little rounder than it needs to, because of the way the stripes & gathers flow around the midsection. Something to be aware of if you’re thinking of making this and you’d rather be camouflaging than emphasizing.

Burda asymmetrical striped tunic

Thanks for reading!