Friends, I need to ask a question -  have you ever asked your tshirt, "why are you trying to kill my armpits?" No? Well then you need to give me your tshirt pattern, because I definitely have asked myself that at least twice this week. I'm not very good at sewing things more than once. It's rough on my wallet - but it's so rough on my brain to sew the same thing again and again, but I'm definitely getting better at it. This week I sewed up the Nettie pattern from Closet Case Files as a tshirt twice, neither of which I could consider "successful."

So let's take a look.

The first time I used some heathered cotton/lyrica knit and cut the pattern exactly at the "hip" line, where the "shirt" part turns it into a body suit. Well, do I need to explain more? Obviously I like my shirts longer than JUST touching my pants. Too bad I didn't think about this when I was cutting. So the issues here are:

1. Much too short. (With a waist skirt it would be okay)
2. The arms eating my armpits.

In all honesty, it doesn't look TERRIBLE. But I'm not really pro - "let my belly hang out when I'm not wearing a crop top" look. It's just not for me, folks. But dang, I love that neckline! Gorgeous. :)

(Secondly, I guess I've been practicing my bitch face. What is that even? I mean seriously, that is simply my face. Except, I look as if I want to murder someone. Astounding. Don't worry, I already know what you're thinking, I wouldn't be friends with me either.)

See the puckering on the shoulders from the sleeves being too close together? My back needs more room, yo.  

Here's a picture of my armpit; you're welcome. 
See how far jammed up it is? I need a sleeve fix.

So after this one, I thought ... only two things I need to fix, not that bad. I decided to cut and trace a second one. I used some darker grey fabric from the same purchase lot as the previous shirt and assumed it was a cotton/lyrica blend.... you'd think by 23 I'd know what assuming does. Anyway, it doesn't have lyrica in it so it was MUCH too tight. It still "fits" in that "sausage being made" kind of way, but it's just not.... what's the word.... comfortable. 

This time I modified it by adding 3" to the length of the shirt and cutting the size 10 sleeves and the armcye to give my arms some moving area. 

So here's the kicker - the arms are still too tight. HA! I realized afterwards that the actual underarm of the armcye is far to high for my liking as a tshirt. Also, even thought I traced the armcye and sleeve the same size... they didn't really line up that well with the body of the shirt so it made a weird pucker under my arm. 

That's my "this is not pleasing" face. Whomp, whomp. I didn't even hem it cause it's being trashed. :( Scratchy fabric is scratchy.

 I'm just moving on guys. In my quest for the perfect tshirt,  I have a feeling that >this< isn't the one. Though I do swoon over that neckline. Wowza! (can I say that? I just did.) I be like, daaayyyyum gurl. (just kidding, I don't ever "be like that.") I'm really thinking that I'll try the Patterns for Pirates Layer Me Up and use the Nettie Neckline. Mash up! :P

(Did I somehow forget to mention that isn't isn't intended to be a shirt? Brilliant! It's really a pattern for a body suit which I'll be making once I figure out how to fit my odd arms/back area.)

Have you found your perfect tshirt pattern? Tell me what it is! I like tight fitted, scoop necks, but I don't snub my nose at a v-neck either. :)

Here is me trying to make this shirt work with a waist high skirt. I think I like it okay, covers that it's too short. ;)

Fabric: Version 1: Light gray cotton/lyrica knit $6.50/yard for 1 yard =$6.50
Version 2: Dark gray, some kind of cotton blend knit $6.50/yard for 1 yard=$6.50
Notions: Thread $.50/shirt for 2 shirts=$1.00
Clear elastic $.25/shirt for 2 shirts=$.50
Total estimated cost: Each shirt $7.25 
Do you ever see a trend and think "That is not for me." Welcome to UGG boots, trucker hats, and rompers. (I've never once desired to look like an adult baby.) but these trends - not those specifically mentioned above - they seem to look endlessly chic on other blogger babes. I can't get over it! How DO they do it?! The kimono was this trend for me. Yikes, won't I look like I'm stepping out in a robe or a beach cover up? Won't I look like I'm trying to be female Huge Hefner? Well, the short answer is no, but I'm not interested in short answers around here. ;)

The lovely pattern I'm testing today is from Striped Swallow Designs by Mandalynn (How awesome is her name?!). Her designs are very boho, flowy, and completely on trend. You just want to be on the beach while wearing her designs, guess it should come as no surprise then that she hails from Florida. /Jealous! Also, just as a general rule, Mandalynn's patterns are very visually pleasing. They are formatted professionally and logically organized. She always includes helpful tips like the seam allowance at the end of each page so no more searching for it. I'm not sure exactly how to explain it, but her pdfs make me feel very ... pampered. (In the best way possible! They look fancy, not homemade - It's like a luxury item, not pampered as in they "baby" you.)

I tested her newest design The Wildflower Kimono, this totally brought the kimono trend into reach for me. I decided to apply after seeing Mandalyn's version on the cover, it just looked so great on her! Lucky for me, I was picked as a tester, so let me share some thoughts ...

First! I totally gave my fiance hell over these photos. Somehow I thought they were all blurry and unusable, but hello awesome photos! He told me "you're just too hard on yourself, you look great!" and I took a second look and he was right. I'm an ass. Bless him for his patience. Haha

This kimono is so wispy and light and amazing! As far as the actual pattern, well, it's not a "pattern" per se, but more of a tutorial as there are no pattern pieces to print. The instructions are clearly written and the pattern comes in sizes Newborn to ladies 3X. BANG! <--That's for your buck.

The Kimono is comprised of only three pieces (including arm bands not pictured here) and has some gorgeous gathering details on the sleeves. It has some good rear end coverage as it dips down below your butt so you're wrapped up in a cocoon style. It's an "always open" kind of kimono that still shows off your shirt, which I love!

Ahh. To go on vacation and sip margaritas on the beach in Florida in some area with loose liquor laws. Yes please. Isn't this how these kimono pictures make you feel? 

I sewed the Wildflower Kimono up in about 2 hours. The only part for me that was frustrating was my fabric choice. Chiffon, you beautiful monster. I tried to do a rolled hem on the sleeves, but connecting those when you reach the end of the circle is impossible for me. (Sleeve cuffs were added to the pattern after I sewed this one up. I'll be using those for my next one!)

Here is me having fun like they do in commercials. It was exhilarating.

This was one of those trends that completely had me stumped. I thought, no kimono, you are not for me. Alas, I was wrong and I completely fell in love with it! (So did my mom, I think she wants this one. :)

I already have fabric for two more.... it was on sale. :P

You can purchase The Wildflower Kimono here for $9

Fabric: Simply Silky Prints Chiffon from Joann's $6.49/yard for 1.75/yards with coupon = $11.36
Notions: Thread = $.50
Total cost: $11.86