Bloem Top by The Eli Monster as a Brand Ambassador Sew

I’m not doing a great job promoting these patterns at the moment as a brand ambassador but am trying to stay diligent for 2019.

The Bloem Top (**affiliate link) by The Eli Monster is a simple, airy casual top perfect for warmer weather. Excellent for beginners as the necessary sewing techniques are basic and also it is super fast to sew. This top features bias trim neckline and arm openings, a simple single button back closure and a subtle high/low hem. There is also a kids version available if you want to add some wardrobe basics for everyone.

Like the rest of The Eli Monster’s patterns, The Bloem Top is layered which means you only need to print the size you are making.  All steps are accompanied by colour photographs. To save paper, cutting dimensions for rectangular pieces are included in lieu of pattern pieces.

I used a nice drapey mustard sketch printed rayon 135cm (100% viscose rayon). Looking back however perhaps I could go down 2 sizes next time as it has ended up quite roomy but also perfect for hot, sweltering weather. Also I made an error with the neckline but didn’t bother fixing it. The bias trim is not mean to be turned completely to the inside which I did without thinking, but instead should be half visible as a finish. I’m okay with that in this version because I was too lazy to make my own so used black instead and don’t know if that would have been visually appealing. Also because I did this, those neck gathers aren’t as obvious as they are meant to be as I sewed them down when I top stitched. Face Palm!!!!

The fit issue I have become more aware the more I sew is that often armholes are too tight in sleeveless garments. This is not the case with the Bloem top. They come down quite low so I’m not feeling restricted in any way and also no undergarments are visible so don’t need to worry about showing too much.

For quite a simple top the finishes are nice. The instructions have you finish the hem with bias tape however I cheated and surged, turned and top stitched. I wasn’t sure if the bias would affect how the hem flowed since this fabric is so drapey. Probably not an issue if I had made my own with the same fabric however the bought bias felt a bit stiff.

Also once complete, I noticed the back closure was not really necessary as I can get the top on and off without undoing it. I’m not sure if I went down a couple of sizes whether this would be affected but will need to check for next time. I would love to make a nice crisp white version for summer, perhaps in some eyelet fabric.

I honestly recommend this pattern for a wardrobe basic which takes no time to sew up.

**This post contains affiliate links to The Eli Monster Patterns

Also just a quick update on my fabric quota for the month of January according to my Stash Shrinker in this post. I purchased 10.1m for the month of January and sewed 3.5m. Lets hope February sways more the other way!

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Grace Dress and Tunic by Wardrobe by Me

I have made a couple of things so far this year, however this was the first pattern test* I have done for myself. The Grace Dress and Tunic (**affiliate link) is a classic dress that will gets lots of rotation in my wardrobe in every season. It is best made in a lightweight woven fabric that has lots of drape. I used some Black sparrows printed rayon 135cm (100% viscose rayon) which I did buy particularly for this test this month but at least it is out of the stash just as quick.

The pattern has 3 sleeve lengths, including a sleeveless version along with two different necklines and four skirt lengths. The size range covers US 0-24 (EU 30-54). There are also a number of little features that make it really pretty and girly such as gathers at both the neckline and back and also in the sleeve at the shoulder. It’s a bit hard to see in my busy fabric however and I’m not sure if the close ups really show it either.

There is a tie band hidden in the waist seam which once again is difficult to see in my fabric and gives a nice blouson effect when tied. The different views are more obvious in the line drawing.

View A: Long sleeve, collar band, straight skirt with two lengths, optional pockets.
View B: Shorter sleeve with ruffle, neckline binding, longer skirt with ruffle tier. optional pockets
View C: Tunic length with curved hem. Choose any sleeve or neckline.

I made view B but omitted the pockets. I usually prefer pockets in my clothing but felt this time I would go without as realistically I will always have a bag with me when I wear this out. I also ended up with a really nice finish around the neckline which I am extremely proud of. There are also some sewing techniques that I don’t really like, and for some odd reason, gathering is one of those. This dress has quite a bit but the outcome is worth it.

In hindsight I probably should have made the sleeveless version, it is a bit more summary, but come autumn and winter, tights and ankle boots will get this dress through year long wear.

The dress is releasing at $10.00 (reg $ 12.00), and will be on sale until Feb. 8th. I highly recommend it and may require above beginner skill level only because of the collar, a sleeve with cuff and lot of gathers, depending on which option you choose.

*The pattern was provided to me free of charge for testing but all opinions expressed are my own and I received a copy of the finalised pattern for taking part.

**This post contains affiliate links to Wardrobe by Me Patterns