Thursday, April 6, 2017

Bamboo Jersey Romper

I don't know who is responsible for the comeback of the romper/jumpsuit, but I'm fairly certain it must be a mom. Easy dressing+practicality=win. I've been pregnant the last two summers and I'm SO happy to finally be able to wear rompers again!

I recently decided to treat myself to some luxurious bamboo/spandex knit (from The Fabric Fairy) specifically for making McCall's 7099. I loved the wrap front and the options for long or short pant length. Plus, pockets!

I would not normally wear these shoes, I think the romper is just a bit too fancy for Chucks, but my backyard is currently in the stage of spring known as All Mud All the Time.

The bamboo knit does get wrinkly, as you can see here after a day of wear. But honestly, if I don't have snot or spit up on my clothes, I call it a win. I've had a lot of knits come my way before, many bad, most mediocre, a few amazing. I would say this falls into the latter category. If you need a good bamboo knit, run off to The Fabric Fairy and snag some (there are lots of colors).

Fit notes:

I was so crazy about this bamboo knit that I actually made a muslin *gasp* of the pattern. Okay, I didn't go too crazy, since I only muslined the top. I'm glad I did. I made a size 6, which is the smallest in the envelope, but McCall's has always run large for me. I ended up removing a wedge from the front bodice, basically from the shoulder to the waist, which you can see here on my altered pattern piece:

I was paying so much attention to the front that I didn't notice how the back was also a bit too big. After making the romper I did go back and alter my pattern for future versions, by removing width from the middle of the shoulder to the waist. I didn't want to mess with the armscythe or side seam.

If I had muslined the shorts I would have seen that they're a bit too wide for my tastes, so I added that alteration to the pattern as well. One note...make these changes to the paper pattern as soon as you're done sewing! I made this over a month ago and to write this post I'm going off my notes in A Sewist's Notebook. It's that easy to forget everything you've done!

My final concern was the waist. Garments with a waist seam always worry me, since I tend to be long-waisted. I cut extra long seam allowances on the top of the shorts and the bottom of the bodice, but it ended up I didn't need them at all. So take note of that if you're short-waisted.


I did not have matching cone thread, as this isn't a color I wear regularly, so I ended up blind-stretch-hemming on my regular sewing machine. It's not my favorite (and boy was it difficult with this fabric!) but it's better than a zig-zag stitch. You can see on the inside that it's kind of a hot mess. It is, however, a super stretchy stitch, so it works for me.

The armholes are finished by turning under and hemming. Not the best, but I can live with it. The rest of the romper was constructed on my serger. You can see a bit of pulling along the neckline band where I didn't stretch evenly, but other than that my serger behaved well with this project.

I did have an issue with the back of the band. It's actually two pieces which dip into a nice V. The pattern has you just sew the points to a dot. I found this difficult, given that the back bodice is also gathered.

Either I should have gathered each side separately, or I should have basted the two band pieces together and then treated them as one. It doesn't look very pretty but my hair probably covers it most of the time anyway.

Boring construction stuff aside, this romper is amazing. The bamboo is so soft and the weight is just perfect, not too thick and not sheer. I do find that the wrap can gape a bit, so I wear a cami with it. You could also sew a snap...actually, now that I think about it, maybe the pattern gave instructions for adding a snap.

One last outtake photo to show you, rompers can withstand anything you throw at them, including gusty spring winds.

Grab a copy of A Sewist's Notebook, A Sewist's Swatch Book, or A Sewist's Notebook for Kids for 10% off AND free shipping! Use code SHIPSAVE17 at checkout. Offer ends April 7th.

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