As I have been joining an esteemed panel of judges (other teachers) for a few years now, I decided this year I would join in with an art themed outfit. Since I had been obsessed with Jay McCarroll's Drop Cloth fabric from his Habitat line and stalking the Wiksten tank obsessively, I thought I would combine the two. I decided this with less than a week to make the top and I knew that I would have to, for the first time in my sewing life, make a muslin.
Armed with the knowledge mined from Flickr, I knew to cut out the size that matched my bust so I cut out the medium size using a recycled sheet (this sheet is endless, yo, I cannot get rid of this fabric). The initial result looked good, but needed some tweaking. I went and paid a visit to A Verb for Keeping Warm, where Kristine suggested that I take up the straps so that the seam fell behind my ears and for the excess fabric I was getting on the back neck I should take the back down a smidge. AVFKW had the Drop Cloth fabric in blue, which is exactly what I wanted, so I got 1.75 yards.
I got home, took up the straps and lowered the back. I liked it better, so I bound the neck as practice. One other thing that bothered me was how it sat on my backside. It sort of rode up, so I wanted to widen the bottom a little. I then transferred the following alterations to the pattern and redrafted it:
- Trim .5 inch off front strap
- Trim 1 inch off back strap & neck
- Grade back down another .5 at deepest
- Increase back sides by .5 inches starting at 7 inches from the bottom
- Cut neck and armhole binding down by 1.5
I did end up cutting the neck down a smidge more, which is useful information since I just cut out fabric for a third Wiksten that will have a button band down the back and have two pockets on the bottom of the tank instead of one at the top. While this pattern seems simple, it is a great base to start from and a perfect pattern to practice making alterations with. I also think it could be a great gift if you have the general idea what size someone is especially since it works up super fast!