Hello, and welcome to Week 1 of the “Dive into Dolmans Blog Tour”! Every Thursday for the next 5 weeks, several bloggers (including me!) will be featuring different dolman-style shirt PDF patterns and comparing them side-by-side. It seems that there are roughly a bajillion PDF dolman patterns, so we want to break it all down and help you find the one that is perfect for you! We will cover everything from fit, to adjustments, to how many pages need to be printed, and SO. MUCH. MORE. Each of the main bloggers has a pretty distinct body type, and we will be talking about any adjustments we make to suit our bodies. There are several guest bloggers who will also be popping in to share their comparisons as well! We have a handy dandy chart that we will be using in each review, so it will be super easy for you to compare!
Follow along with us, because at the end of the tour there will be a roundup of all of the posts.. and of course – a giveaway! 🙂
For week 1, I will admit that I took the easy way out and I am featuring a dolman that I had already made and photographed for a pattern test! Between other pattern tests, photo shoots, and Easter this past weekend, I have been completely swamped. So without further adieu, today I will be talking about the Sweet Tee from Patterns for Pirates!
For starters, here is the review chart with all of the important details about this specific PDF pattern.
Let’s just talk about that size range for a second. There are a total of TEN sizes included in the Sweet Tee pattern. It is amazing to have so many sizes covered in a single pattern. For my Sweet Tee, I made an XL according to my bust measurement. Based on my waist measurement, I should have graded out to XXL at the waist, and then back in at the hip. With most knit top patterns, I don’t usually take the time to grade between sizes, since knit fabric is so forgiving (read:stretchy!) Since I didn’t grade out as I should have, you can see that the shirt is more fitted on me all the way down, instead of the intended “semi-fitted at waist & hip” fit. I also used a medium weight 95/5 cotton/lycra blend, which is a slightly thicker and sturdier fabric, which also affected the overall fit of the shirt.
Patterns for Pirates drafts their women’s patterns for an hourglass figure, which is clearly not me. By grading my pattern out at the waist, I could have easily achieved the intended fit. Even though it is more on the fitted side, it is still completely comfortable and wearable! To see an illustration showing the intended fit of P4P’s different shirt patterns, see her blog post here. The pattern is drafted for a height of 5’5″ and I am 5’4″, but I typically don’t shorten my tops, because I like the coverage the extra length lends! There is a live link in the pattern that will lead you to this blog post that will walk you through lengthening or shortening the pattern according to your height. I chose short sleeves (come on warm weather!) and the tall waistband option. Again – more booty coverage! 🙂 My next Sweet Tee will definitely have a curved hem!
In general, dolman tops have an easy fit, and sew up very quickly since there aren’t separate sleeve pieces to set-in. This pattern is no different! You could easily have a Sweet Tee cut & sewn in under an hour. The tutorial is short and sweet, and very easy to understand. A confident beginner could tackle this pattern without too much trouble!
The verdict? I love my Sweet Tee – the fit is great (even better if you make adjustments based on your body type), it’s a quick sew, the pattern is layered and has no-trim pages, and there are several options to fill up your closet and take you through every season! If you consider the size range and options included, this pattern is an incredible value at $9.00. And bonus – there is a girl’s version, too (Sugar Pie). Double the fun and make some cute Mommy & Me tops! 🙂 If you need both patterns (you do!) you can grab the bundle here and save yourself a buck!
Make sure you check out the other Week 1 posts at the links below! So many amazing patterns are being reviewed this week by some amazing sew-bloggers! See you here next Thursday for Week 2! 🙂
Diving Into Dolmans Week 1
Guest blogger: Rebel and Malice