All March, Minerva has highlighted beautiful garments made with McCall’s patterns! I was fortunate enough to receive a McCall’s pattern and fabric from Minerva to whip up my own creation. The pattern I chose, pattern 8146, is a popular pattern featuring a peplum wrap top with gathered sleeve variations. The fabric I paired with it is a gorgeous gold and black crepe fabric by John Kaldor named Hermione. It’s been years since I’ve sewed up a Big 4 pattern and honestly, this project reminded me why I usually stick to independent pattern companies. The final look is fine, but that’s mainly because of the gorgeous fabric. I honestly don’t see myself wearing this top again.
Before I get into my pattern review, let’s lighten things up a bit by talking about this fabric. This John Kaldor Hermione Crepe is a lovely peachskin fabric that drapes like a dream. It can be slightly sheer under harsh lighting but should be fine for everyday wear without lining. It laundered great and didn’t bleed or lose any vibrancy. While sewing, I didn’t have any problems with snags, but this slightly silky fabric tends to move around a bit. Because of this, I made sure to use plenty of pins and clips to keep everything aligned correctly. I didn’t notice any fraying on unfinished seams, but for longevity’s sake finishing seams is always a good idea. This leads me into my pattern review…
Okay, I’ve sewed up many Big 4 patterns in the past, but I don’t remember the experience being as unpleasant as this one. First, it was hard to figure out which pattern size range to get because there are no finished garments measurements for the arms, waist, or hips on the package. I ended up getting the KK size range based on my bust size, but this top is huge on my bust. Whenever I wear it, I feel like my boobs are just ready to pop out. As I mentioned before, I like to finish all my seams in my me made garments. That was kind of tricky with this pattern unless you finished all your seams before construction or stopped halfway through a step to finish your seams. Maybe I’ve just been spoiled by indie patterns, but the directions overall felt incomplete. I had to watch a YouTube video by “Virginia’s Daughter” to help fill in the blanks of the pattern’s directions.
Yet another issue I had with this pattern is what I like to call “floating facings”. “Floating Facings” are just that – facings that aren’t stabilized to the garment and instead, just float up when you get dressed. Understitching can only do so much. To combat this, I stitched in the ditch of the shoulder seams. This helped stabilize the neckline more, but I still had issues with the facing across my bust. On a positive note, the gathered sleeves were really easy to sew, but the bottom half of the sleeve needed to be slimmed down. I’m glad so many people have liked this pattern, but it’s just not for me.