Friday, March 8, 2019


After my experience with the Willow Tank and Dress, I was anxious to try the Hadley Top.  It has two variations, sleeveless and long sleeve, jewel neck or V neck. The sleeveless top has facings for the armhole, neckline, and hem. One back version has an inverted pleat design element. The bottom is curved so it is shorter in the front than in the back.

I did my first draft as a wearable muslin using some very lightweight lawn which, although I loved, has sat idle on my shelf for a couple of years.  I chose the sleeveless, V neck version.  Many people had commented that the neckline was low, so I went ahead and raised it by 3/4 inch.  Because of the pattern design, I was unsure how to raise it. I contacted Grainline, but wasn't really happy with their answer, so this is how I did it.

As you can see, there is a notch for the seam allowance, which threw me a bit. I drew a line perpendicular to the grainline. Then I cut across this horizontal line, up the grainline, and stopped just short of the shoulder, leaving the piece attached. I then took the neckline section, which was slightly detached, and pinched up the required amount (3/4  " in my case). I then moved it back in and taped it, and inserted pattern paper to fill in the 3/4 " I pinched out above.  I did this so that the shoulder would stay intact and the V would be undisturbed since it has a very nice curved shape, see below.

But, once I was finished, the neckline is really the only thing I loved. I used the interfaced armhole facings as directed. But, with such very thin fabric, a 2" interfaced facing was overkill and just made the armhole very 'bunchy'. I probably should have anticipated that. So, in the future with a fabric like this, I would use simple self made binding.

My next disappointment is that the dart seemed to fall too high which I thought was odd because it did not on the Willow Tank. I haven't yet compared patterns, but I don't know why that would be the case with the same pattern company.  Also, the front really ends up quite short, not a  look that is good on me.  So this one will be strictly a learning experience before it is tossed.

Would I make it again? Yes, I think it has some nice possibilities. I would take advantage of its structural elements by using a heavier fabric. I would add length all around so the front doesn't end so short. I would also go up to a size 12 even though the finished measurements are larger than the Willow Tank. It just looked skimpy.

By the way, if you are a V neck fan, as I am, another wonderful V neck pattern is the shell in Loes Hinse' Sweater Set. Scroll down to look at the shell. Really lovely - also center seam, like the Hadley. It does not use facings, just gets turned under. And, even though it it made for a knit, I have made it in a woven, and it works just fine.

Some days are just learning experiences. Unfortunately, I wanted another sleeveless top for my trip!

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