Thursday, March 19, 2015

TNT Pattern Hacking: Aber-frew

Isn't it funny how as soon as you have a TNT pattern, you can't wait to start hacking it up and changing it into something else? Or is that just me??

I honestly didn't intend to make another Aberdeen top right away, but then I wore my grey one three times last week. It seems that I'm I'll-prepared for the combination of warmer weather and my third trimester (my first child was born in the month of February). Honestly, nothing is fitting well or even the same as my last pregnancy, so I figured if I had a winner I should make another one. But I tweaked it to see if I could work out some of the issues with the neckline. I mashed the Aberdeen with the Sewaholic Renfrew, and now I present, the Aberfrew!

I started with the Seamwork Aberdeen, size XS, same as my previous. I again added 3 1/2" to the length, which flared the side seams as well. Because I had so much trouble with the sharp V-neck as-drafted, I traced the shape of the V-neck Renfrew onto my Aberdeen. Then I used the neckband pattern piece and construction method from the Renfrew, cutting two (instead of one on the fold) and extending the length since the neckline is much longer.

The green line is the Renfrew neckline. The pink line is the neckline from my previous version, where I had dropped the point 1". You can see that the Renfrew is more scooped and less severe. It's also considerably lower. I had some concerns about being able to pull the grey top down for nursing so I went even lower this time. Maybe too low? Thoughts?

The second adaptation from the Renfrew is sleeve cuffs. 

If you're working with a slinky or lightweight knit, hemming can be a pain. A cuff is a great way to hem a sleeve as long as you have enough fabric. These cuffs are cut slightly smaller than the armhole opening and were stretched to fit.

I'm still in love with the back of this.

I'm not 100% happy with this hack because my neckline ended up very wide. The Renfrew is drafted with a 5/8" seam allowance, so I sewed on the neckband that way, rather than the 3/8" for which the Aberdeen is drafted. I think I need to use the smaller seam allowance going forward, to help keep the top from dropping off my shoulders. Maybe I'm only annoyed by it because my house was kind of chilly the day I took these photos...on a warm day I might be fine.

It's just bothersome enough that I will probably add a tie to the back, or perhaps bra strap carriers inside. This fabric is heavier than my previous version, so the weight might also be part of the problem. Or maybe I just should have worn a black bra.

The fabric is a rayon/spandex knit from Girl Charlee that I've had forever. I rarely wear brown (or glasses, FYI) and I bought a yard of this just to use for accents on other projects. It's been collecting dust until now but it was perfect for another Aberdeen. I'm SO excited that I can get one of these tops out of one yard of fabric!

Now, since I've been harping on this for a week, about the V-neck. I am MUCH happier with the Renfrew version. I think I only basted it in once or twice instead of six or seven times. You can see a tiny bit of pulling/wrinkles at CF but only if you're looking for them. Even with the updated directions that Seamwork sent out, the very drastic V was just too hard for me to sew. This isn't a couture gown, it's a t-shirt. It's meant to be fast and easy. I'm now happy to say that it is. I opted not to topstitch around the V. I had plans to do some cool reverse coverstitching but it looked stupid, so I tore it out.

I must say, mashing two TNTs is fun! With a few small tweaks my Aberfrew will be its own TNT. So should I make 30 more of these to get me through the last 9 weeks of my pregnancy?


  1. It looks great! Comfy and cute all in one. And maybe you should rethink not wearing brown - it really suits you! :)

    1. Thank you! It makes sense, I wear brown eye makeup since it supposedly "goes" with blue eyes. But brown isn't a very exciting color ;)

  2. I agree with Gillian, brown looks great on you. I love this version - yes, make more! The v does not seem too low, especially if you are going to be nursing. And shirts falling off my shoulders make me crazy. Bra carriers sound like a good idea.

    1. With bra carriers at least I can decide when I want to use them and when I don't, which would be a nice option!

  3. I think the neckline is perfect! (But then, as a larger busted lady, I much prefer lower necklines as they sort of break up the expanse of chest - wait does that sound bad? I do not walk around with my boobs hanging out, but I like a nice low scoop.) I love this mash-up! I don't have the renfrew pattern and never hopped on that bandwagon, but you and a friend recently made great v-necks and I really like the shape and style. Totally with you on the sleeve cuffs, and yours look great.

    1. I understand what you mean! I think I've gotten less modest as I've gotten older, like, I'm married with one (soon to be two) kids, so who cares how low-cut my top is?! You should try the Renfrew, I resisted getting on that bandwagon too, but ended up loving it!


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