Tuesday 30 June 2009


Sleeveless smocky: take two

Encouraged by all your helpful feedback on my first sleeveless smocky I put my thinking cap back on last night. What changes did I need to make? What did I need to do to improve it? 'I know,' I thought, 'I'll make it reversible!' Because in Kitschy Coo world, everything should be reversible.

I couldn't put my finger on why I didn't like sleeveless smocky 1.0, but Grace could... She nailed it for me when she said that the neckline looked heavy compared to the breeziness of the body. With 2.0, I think the bubble hem and extra shape the two layers of fabric gives balances out the heaviness of the neckline perfectly.

It still has a notch in the back, and if you squint you'll see that there is also a central seam running down the back. This is necessary for it to be reversible, which I found out at 1AM when I tried to turn it right sides out and it wouldn't. I was thinking about maybe making it separate with a slit up the back so it's extra cool for hot weather. Or is that just crazy talk?!

This is the other side with the matryoshka and polkadot fabrics reversed. I wasn't sure if such a small accent of the matryoshka fabric would work, but I think it does!

What do you think, does it work? Is it crazy to make something with two layers that's intended for the summer? And the $64,000 question: can this been a separate pattern from the puff sleeve smocky? I was intending to have them as part of the same pattern, but the pieces are slightly different, and the technique is completely different so that they'd really be two separate tutorial rather than one with deviations. But I know they look very similar, so people might expect them to be together. Any advice greatly appreciated!


  1. As always, this is gorgeous. I love lime green and bright pink together. To be honest, if it's a different pattern and different techniques, then do it as a different pattern otherwise you'll struggle. You have such a following now, people will want (and pay for!) both.

  2. I love it! The colour combo is great too. Not sure my little boy would appreciate it, but thankfully I have a soon-to-be god-daughter who will look super cute in it when I get my confidence back with my sewing machine!

    As for the pattern - how about offering them separately (as you say, they are different techinques and you've worked really hard on them) but giving a small discount if people buy them both together? I do something similar with some one-off designs - the bracelet and necklace are offered separately but if people want both and email me to arrange it they get a discount for buying them together.

    You deserve to get paid more for this one as you're passing on tonnes of experience and the benefit of masses of experimentation.

  3. LOVE IT - wish i had a little girl to dress up.

  4. Did you also make a moebius thing? I nearly cried when I did it whilst making Greer's dress.

    I absolutely love this and I think it should definitely be a separate pattern because it's totally different.


  5. Lovely, but I think they are two separate patterns: the smocky top and the sleeveless reversible top.

  6. Its completely gorgeous. Love the fabrics together. Are these for sale in your shop? I think they are def 2 seperate patterns but Jo had a good idea about maybe offering a small discount if people bought the 2 together. The whole reversible thing just blows my mind! Are you still looking for pattern testers?????

  7. Its beautiful, the colours really do compliment each other. I would expect them to be two separate patterns, like you say it would be a different matter if the changes were just a tweak or two.

  8. I'd love to know if you're still looking for testers as well. This is adorable!!

  9. so i'm going through your posts anachronistically right now. (commented earlier in your more recent giveaway post that i'd love the puffed sleeve pattern). but i wanted to let you know that i think the revised sleeveless top looks balanced to me now. i think it looks great. as for the weight of two fabrics, no, i don't think it's a bad idea. i think it's good actually as the indoors can be cool with enthusiastic AC users.

    as for the two tutorials question, i think that you can do two separate ones or combine them. i think folks would be happy with whatever you decide to do. if they are only a bit different that it's one of those "it could go either way - sell individual or combo", you could always combine and sell for a bit more than an individual pattern and less than two separate patterns. just my two cents.