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If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you might remember this picture. I was so excited while sewing these cuffs with thumbholes, that I couldn’t resist taking a hand-selfie. This amazing bit of sewing origami made no sense at all to me, yet they came out perfectly.
This awesomeness was part of a pattern I was testing, Once Upon a Sewing Machine’s Grown Up Thumbs Up shirt and tunic. This mother-daughter team had already created this pattern for kids, and was adapting it to fit women.
And what an amazing job they did! And so many options! Sizes XS to XXL. Shirt or tunic/dress lengths. Short or long sleeves. Regular cuff or cuff with thumbhole. Standard neck or cowl/funnel neck. Optional bands for the sleeves and hem. Maternity option. Wow! And color-blocking is part of the design, making it more fun. So, of course, with all these options, I had to make three of them. Oh yes… I’m a little obsessed!
Aren’t those thumb holes cool? Love ’em! (Don’t mind the wet sleeves. It was raining!)
This pattern went through two rounds of testing because the first round showed that some slight changes needed to be made. (Most people don’t realize just how much behind-the-scenes work there is behind sewing patterns! We designers work our butts off to get our patterns perfect!) I realized that the sleeves weren’t long enough for the cuffs to reach to my thumb, so I just made regular cuffs. And the fit was sort of bag-like.
There was a bit of bunching around the armpit. (Don’t you love that arrow-shaped sleeve insert?!) However, the necessary changes were made, and by round two the fit was PERFECT!
After the testing, I removed the sleeves and took out a little bit of the excess bulk, then I added a geometric appliqué to break up the blah-ness of the blue fabric.
But the true potential of this pattern came with the second round of testing and added options. Also, the designers added final measurements, so I was able to determine how much length to add to the body and sleeves (the pattern was designed for women shorter than I am) for a perfect fit.
My second version was tunic length with a bottom hem band, funnel neck and thumb holes. And please allow me to toot my own horn: check out what a perfect job I did of lining up those stripes on the side and sleeve seams!
This is one very comfortable dress! I just love it!
My daughter saw me put this on and found it hilarious when I pulled the cowl over my face, so she insisted we take a picture of me like that. (I had to humor my 8-year-old photographer, right?!)
Afterwards, I sewed a pair of leggings to match the contrast fabric.
This tunic is very cute with layers, too, even if they hide the arrow sleeve insert.
I loved the other testers’ short-sleeved versions so much, that I had to make one for myself, too. While I had a hard time choosing a good contrast fabric for the pink and white striped fabric (which looked red and white striped when I ordered it online, otherwise I would’ve have bought it), I had three good choices for this geometric-patterned fabric.
Nice and comfortable, and ready for spring! My one complaint about this version has nothing to do with the pattern, but the viscose fabric, which I find a bit too clingy for my tastes. But it’s a nice casual spring shirt that goes nicely with my vine-decorated jeans.
Conclusion: two thumbs up for the Grown Up Thumbs Up pattern by OUSM! You can get the women’s version here, or a bundle of both the women’s and children’s versions here.
Up through March 26th, both are 15% off with the coupon code “ThumbRelease” and you can also enter to win the woman’s pattern by filling out the form below (until March 21)! (However if you buy the pattern and then win it, you’ll be fully reimbursed for your purchase!) So go take advantage of the discount and buy it now!!
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