McCall’s 7331 is a knits-only wardrobe pattern. We’re seeing ponte de Roma knits everywhere in ready to wear, and I have a business trip coming up, so I decided to use this pattern to make a coordinated wardrobe — possibly a Spring SWAP 2016.
The pattern includes pull-on pants and skirt, a drop-sleeve T with bracelet length sleeves, and a cardigan.
A couple of weeks ago I made the pants in black and cafe au lait ponte knit, and the top in pale blue cotton interlock. I’ve worn all the pieces quite a bit since then, and they are as comfy as pajamas but more respectable looking.
With a business trip coming up in a couple of months, I decided to make another top or two and to try out the cardigan pattern as well. I considered a couple of stash-busting fabric options.
Blue and coffee with a a sort of bokeh design in gray, pink, purple, and black. Obviously, the black pants will work in this grouping. But it doesn’t look like spring, does it? Or at least not Spring 2016.
Blue and coffee with a couple of coral print options — but neither of the prints is a knit.
Instead, I eschewed the stash-busting plan and spent $100 on additional knits: the cobalt, pink, and dark coral in the bottom row of the photo below.
Too bad the black made it into the picture but the Serenity Blue did not. Still, we’re looking at a pretty good approximation of Rose Quartz, Serenity, Snorkel Blue, Iced Coffee, and Fiesta.
There are some wovens bringing in Peach Echo and a shade a bit darker than Limpet Shell but in the same family, in case I decide to extend the plan from travel mini-capsule to SWAP.
So I made Saturday a Personal Sewing Day after completing chores and errands, put West Wing on Netflix, and cut everything out.
- From the Snorkel Blue I cut the cardigan and pants and was tempted to cut the skirt as well, but instead cut the top.
- From the Fiesta I cut the cardigan and the skirt.
- From the Rose Quartz I cut the top and am debating cutting the skirt as well. Should a woman my age be wearing knit skirts? Not sure about that.
Then I sewed up the major seams on the Snorkel Blue top and pants and settled in to hem the top.
So here we see 3 pairs of pants, 1 skirt, 3 tops, and 2 cardigans in various states of completion.
The top has just 3 pieces: front, back, and sleeve.
It is relaxed and comfortable, and sews up very quickly: sew up the shoulder seams, ease in the sleeves, and then sew from wrist to bottom hem on each side.
There are no facings. For the first version, I added facings, but for the second I’m making narrow hand-stitched hems. The pattern calls for machine sewn hems, and I guess I could do that for the third version, but I prefer hand finishes. We’ll see.
The pants are unusual in that the front piece is notably narrower than the back. I don’t know what the point of that is. This is also a 3-piece pattern, with front and back legs plus a wide yoke sewn on like a waistband. The skirt is cut in the same way, but the front and back are identical.
I’m making the pants a couple of sizes larger so that they don’t end up as leggings.
They have a wide waistband which has wide elastic stitched to the inside. It’s not a very attractive look but the top covers it and it is certainly easy and comfortable. The heavier the fabric the better if, like me, you prefer a modest appearance.
The pants and top are really very much like pajamas. Simple cutting, simple sewing, a bit of elastic and hemming — they couldn’t possibly be easier, and you can just pull them on and feel like you’re in your PJs. Fitting is not all that important as long as you cut the elastic to the right length, and the look depends entirely on your choice of fabric.