The jumpsuit craze shows no sign of letting up, and I couldn’t be happier. I absolutely hate that feeling of being ‘gripped’ around the waist so jumpsuits are my dream garment – plus they’re great for all seasons unlike floaty summer dresses.
I decided to give New Look 6373 a go with this viscose I’d got for £1 a metre off Birmingham rag market when I visited with the Sew Notts crew. For that price I wasn’t expecting top quality and there are a few places on the lighter pink flowers where the black dye has run, but they’re not at all noticeable and since I’d never sewn with viscose I thought it would be a good intro.
Sewing level: Beginner. There’s no zips as it has an elasticated waist. The only new skill might be roll-hemming the long flounce if you’ve not done that before. I massively recommend getting a roll-hemming foot for this – I love mine, it’s one of the feet I use most often – mainly because I’m a bit scissor-happy and have been known to chop hems too short so need the smallest possible turning 😀 They look a bit fiddly but once you’re going with them they’re great. This video shows their wondrous powers!
Were the instructions clear? Yes, very straightforward.
How was it for you? The construction itself was no problem, but good lord the cutting out! Viscose is NOT FUN. I’m slow at cutting out and it was made extra tricky due to me having to squeeze a full jumpsuit out of two metres, but I think it took me three hours, by which point I never wanted to see the bloody stuff again!!
I used a rotary cutter rather than scissors but next time I might try starching the fabric in advance to see if that keeps the bugger still.
What have you learned? Not a lot sewing-wise but I’m sharpening my disaster-rescuing skills.
How did it fit? I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – MAKE A TOILE!! I’d already made a toile of the bodice to check to see if I needed an FBA (I didn’t as I often don’t with these sort of ‘bag out’ styles – for reference I’m an F cup) so I knew the bodice fitted OK and I was fairly sure I wouldn’t have any problems fitting the loose pyjama style pants.
Normally I’m a RTW UK size 10 top and 12/14 bottom, but because of the loose fit I cut a size 12 all over except I dropped the crotch to the largest size (which I think was an 18) because wedgies appear to be a peril of jumpsuits.
However, when it came to trying on time something was badly wrong…there was definitely an MC Hammer vibe going on and the whole thing looked weirdly drapey and too big.
As you can see in the first pic here, the crotch is nearly to my knees and there’s way too much fabric around the bum/hip area.
Thankfully I have good friends who will give me honest feedback (thank you Sazzle!) so after canvassing opinions I decided to go back to the drawing board.
The biggest problem was that I wasn’t sure WHAT the problem was. The style and all-over print are both quite a way outside my comfort zone so I wasn’t sure if the jumpsuit would suit me even if I fixed the fit. But a UFO is an annoyance to me so I decided to persevere…
Did you hack it? Yes! I decided that the problem was from an excess of fabric between the bodice and crotch, probably because I’m only 5’3 and these patterns are drafted for someone around 5’6′. I’d made the elasticated waist too loose (for comfort reasons) so instead of sitting on my natural waist it was sinking a few inches below.
I decided to have a go at hacking the jumpsuit into separates, creating a paper-bag waist for the pants.
I unpicked the waist seam. I’d already overlocked the bottom edge of the bodice and the top edge of the pants (because I overlock all my pattern pieces before construction 😇) so I simply made a small single turned hem at the bottom of the cami top.
Now I know I should have done the pants a bit more scientifically, measuring my crotch line/waist-to-crotch etc etc. But hey I’m a rebel livin’ on the edge so what I actually did was a little less precise.
First I interfaced the top two inches of the waist area with some medium-weight fusible interfacing. This was to give the drapey viscose some structure and make the paperbag bit stand upright. In retrospect this would have been better in a grey or black interfacing as it stands a bit proud from my body so you do get the odd flash, but hey I only had white to hand.
I turned a 1cm single hem at the top of the pants, encasing the top edge of the interfacing.
Then I took some 1.5″ elastic and measured it to my natural waist. I wanted these pants to sit high. I quartered it with pins in the same way you’d do if you were attaching a neckband to ensure I was stretching it equally, and pinned it to the inside of the pants about 1.5 inches below my newly-turned top edge. I directly applied the elastic using the lighting stitch right in the centre of the elastic (I wanted to use a large zigzag but my machine wasn’t having that).
In the pic below you can see the two lines of stitching on the outside of my new pants, the top one is the hem and the lower one is the elastic.
I tried them on and ta-daaaaa! My freehand hoiking hack had worked! The crotch now sits at the correct place and I have some lovely high-waisted paperbag trousers.
Here’s the bodice alone. I really love that flounce!
Here’s the pants with the cami to give the original jumpsuit vibe. Admire my wondrous crotch!
Would you make it again, and if so what would you do differently? I feel quite smug to have snatched victory from the jaws of defeat here and I would actually use this pattern exactly the same way next time – leave the excess length in the body and use it to make separates. They give exactly the same look as the jumpsuit and are so much more versatile.
And finally…will you wear it out? I’ve worn these loads – they’ve super versatile and comfy!
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