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McCall’s 7510 Emerald Crepe Top

Hi there sewing enthusiasts! I’m back again to show you what I have been making with Minerva’s Polyester Crepe Fabric this month.
To be honest, in complete ignorance of this fabric, I expected it to be a bit like normal crepe but was surprised to find the blend is much more like Polyester with a softer, non shiny surface. It’s almost a bit like lining fabric - same sort of great drape but with slightly more weight. I chose a lovely emerald green colour.
I often watch the Sewing Quarter on television and I’d recently seen the McCall’s 7510 Pattern made up in a normal polyester with just the same sort of drape. So I thought I would give that pattern a go. I chose view A which has the short flutter cold shoulder sleeve. The pattern has a good choice of sleeve types - normal long sleeves with cold shoulder and long with a ruffle at the bottom of the sleeve and short with a flutter sleeve. You can also choose to add a ruffle to the bottom of the bodice but I decided to leave it plain. 
I haven’t often worked with really slippery fabric apart from linings. I read some blog posts and snippets from books I have on the subject of slippery fabrics! I pinned the selvages of my fabric together before laying out the fabric for cutting. I pinned and used weights to keep the pattern pieces in place and prevent the fabric from moving. I used my tracing wheel and carbon paper to transfer the bust dart markings and a water erasable pen to mark dots. These marks really bled into the fabric so I do hope they come out when I wash it! I decided to use both my overlocker and sewing machine - the latter for the more tricky bits. 
The fabric tolerated steam ironing on setting 2 very well but the fabric is very bouncy and it was hard to keep a crisp fold without the fabric springing apart!
Most of the construction was straight forward except for those pesky sleeves. First you finish the top edge of the cold shoulder sleeve with binding. This was pretty straight forward.
You have to run a line of machine stitching half an inch from the raw edge of the circular hem and turn the hem under and press. It pressed in place with reasonable ease. The next step is to trim this close to your line of stitching. I trimmed mine nice and close and then found folding it over again was virtually impossible. It turned under nicely where the hem was with the grainline but when you reached a part of the hem that was with the bias there was just too much fabric to ease in and to lie flat.
I tried gathering these areas to ease in the fullness but the end result was a bit of a dog’s dinner to be honest! I did a better job with the second sleeve where I decided to trim the edge less - leaving more to turn so it was a bit less fiddly. With this sleeve I just pinned it every eighth of an inch! Despite the dog’s dinner you don’t seem to be able to see this on the finished garment. Phew!
Another tip is to understitch your neckline seam before sewing the armhole seams as this gives more room to manoeuvre the layers of fabric.
The pattern requires a lining and as the fabric is quite like lining fabric I decided to self line it. You have to slipstitch the final section of armhole on each side.
Finally the hem was also a bit tricky. I decided on the length that I wanted and pinned this at the front. I then asked my husband to pin up the back level with the front for me. He didn’t really do a very good job so I then put the top on my dressmaker’s dummy and measured up from the floor. I got it really level but when I took it off the dummy the seam line was all over the place! So I tried to blend it as best I could and hoped for the best.
Overall I’m really pleased with it. I love the colour, the drape and style of the garment. However, I’m not sure I want to work with such a slippery fabric too often or the air will be very blue! My advice would be to use it for very simple constructions that don’t require too many curved seams or easing in of fullness.
I wore it out on Monday night to my bridge club and I got lots of lovely complements!
Thanks for reading.
Diana

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