Polka dot Tova stars in MMM ’12 day 9

Wearing: Polka dot Tova; high-waisted wide-legged Topshop trousers.

*Sigh.* How do I love thee polka dot Tova? Let me count the ways…or maybe blog about them, counting won’t be that informative.

First off, these are some nicely drafted pattern pieces. The sleeves in particular were a dream to insert. I ended up with no gathers, a first in a woven sleevehead for me. The instructions are also excellent, with lots of informative pictures and a nice bite-sized layout so you don’t feel intimidated.

The design comes with two options, top or dress length. Though I went with the top option it was still a little too long for my tastes, finishing on my thighs. I chopped off 2 inches and used a turned over 2 inch hem as well. It now hits me on the hip.

Though I prefer it tucked in, it looks pretty cute hanging out as well:

Having it untucked doesn’t make me look as up the duff in real life. No one gave up a seat for me on the Tube anyway (though that’s because I crush their insteps to get a seat at the start of the commute, go hard or go home).

The style isn’t really a sell the goods kind of top but you might need to wear something under it otherwise the opening can give everyone an eyeful. Here’s me not giving you an eyeful:

Definite plus, I cut a straight size S, and didn’t have any fit issues across the bust. Presumably because it’s not a close-fitting design and there are no darts in the bodice pieces. I do have to take it off over my head like a toddler though but meh, don’t care.

Sewing in the insert piece was a little awkward, probably because I don’t have any experience sewing a square shape like this to a larger U-shaped piece.  In addition, there’s quite a bit of gathering on the bottom edge, so when you come to sewing around the bottom curve there’s a lot of fullness in the main bodice piece. I ended up having to unpick and redo the corners because I was catching the fabric.

I used the overlock stitch on my machine as a seam finish. Having never used it before I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I found the correct distance to get the stitch along the edge of the hem difficult to judge. Wear and tear should tell me how effective this stitch is but it certainly doesn’t look pretty. The armhole seams aren’t finished, you know, for…uh, control purposes.

My only real problem was when it came to sewing the two collar pieces together. I found it hard to tell which was the bottom or top edge and I think I ended up sewing them on to the bodice pieces the wrong way up. As a consequence the front collar piece pokes out on the inside on the insert as you can see in the pic below. Since the fabric and the style means the collar often flips open this is visible but if anyone’s getting that close to my clavicle, well that’s when you crush the instep.


  • The design: cute sleeve length, relaxed shape.
  • This is my first time with rayon (if it is indeed rayon, let’s say yes) and it was straight-forward to sew up. It doesn’t fray crazily and the silky hand and drape makes me feel elegant.

Love less:

  • I messed up the collar. That’s it!

I strongly recommend you pick up the PDF for this, which is available here from Wiksten patterns. Paper versions have been available in the past so if you loathe printing then keep an eye out for a new run. If you’re umming and aahing about them, check out the Wiksten pattern Flickr pool which has a lot of great versions.

Phew! I’ve now nearly run out of un-repeated MMM items. So either I sew like a dervish or I’m going to be re-styling aplenty for the next TWENTY-ONE days.

This entry was posted in Me-Made-May '12, Modern patterns, Tops and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Polka dot Tova stars in MMM ’12 day 9

  1. __cui says:

    I miss collagearmageddon.

  2. shivani says:

    love love love it. I’ve actually just cut out pieces for a polka dot version too (black on grey) – my third Tova. I love this pattern! The second time I made it, I basted the inset bit before sewing, which made it much easier.

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  5. Aileen says:

    Falling down the rabbit-hole after following your kimono top (which turned out lovely, btw, and I had the same confusion with the cuffs!)… and I am finally convinced by your version of the Tova! I just haven’t liked the amount of gathers at the front but in a drapey fabric, like yours, it works. Lovely work and great job managing the MMM!

    • Glad it wasn’t just me with the cuffs! I love your versions too, it’s a real showcase for a favoured fabric.
      Run and get the Tova! I’m wearing mine right now, it’s one of my favourite projects.

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