Thursday, November 8, 2012

Neutral Basics or Basic Neutrals

If you’ve been following my sewing over the past year, you know that I have a tendency to make colorful, patterned blouses, skirts, and dresses. And I did make a few solid colored trousers last spring. But I don’t have many plain tops to go with the patterned skirts. I’m especially lacking in neutral colors – I don’t even own a black tee!

So I’m putting together some basic tees and tops in neutral colors: white, off-white, gray, and black.

Here are the first two, each from about one yard of fabric.

Kimono-style cardigan, in a textured novelty knit (cotton blend?) from Mood
From Butterick 5394, fairly recent, but out of print.
This was a beautiful piece of fabric, but very strange.
Knits do not exactly have a grain, but I could not get the knit stitches to lie perpendicular to either selvedge. The entire piece was slanted about 20 degrees off square, so I stretched, steamed, pressed, and hung it in different configurations to try to straighten it.  Finally it was straight enough to cut, and it seems to hang just fine in the finished garment. I just have to remember to wash it carefully, and it may need blocking when it dries.

Simple tee in a smocked cotton blend jersey.
McCall's 9185 from 1998.

The fabric is surprisingly soft, and the smocking makes this knit more opaque than if it was just a single layer of jersey.

Next on the list is black. I already have white dog hair all over the stack of black fabrics, just from moving them around. I will have to carry lint removers with me all the time if I wear any black!



  1. Katrina, that sounds like my experience when I go to my daughter's home with her big yellow Lab. Black comes back white and hairy. I love neutrals. Love the creams and whites like you have here. And always love looking at what you create!

  2. I think those blouses are fabulous. I need to learn how to sew knits.

  3. And all without a serger? Don't know how you do it!