Thursday, 10 February 2011

BurdaStyle 12-2009-120, Tunic top in hemp knit

I am prone to sunburn. Usually at the beach I wear a long sleeved rash top and knee length board shorts to reduce sun exposure. However, within the next fornight I am staying briefly at Noosa (tourist beach town), with friends who tell me we will be walking down to the beach, then going out for coffee or lunch on Hastings St. Sounds tough, doesn't it? Hastings St is full of people wearing resort clothes. I thought I would attempt something a little more dressy than a rash top as a cover up.

This tunic length top is loungewear from Burda 12-2009, number 120. In the magazine it has a hood, and I have made it previously as a fully opening jacket, rather shorter, and as the t shirt version, which was not very successful due to placket issues.

This is a very unusual shape of top for me to wear. I am thinking it might look better with long trousers than over this skirt. Keeping out of a clothing rut is very difficult for me!

For this version, I used the 1m (shrunk to 95cm, much better than the sheeting) of cotton/hemp knit I bought from Margaret River Hemp Co. The fabric does not have a great deal of stretch, and is heavier than most cotton jersey or interlock I have come across. This heaviness is disappointingly not sufficient to prevent show through of white underclothes. I will pretend this is deliberate when I wear it over my dark brown swimming costume!

I did not use the Burda instructions for the placket this time. (I do learn from my failures ;). Instead I sewed the raw edges of the folded placket pieces along the vertical seams on the right side of the fabric at the opening (interfacing with silk organza), before cutting the slit, then cut the slit and clipped to the bottom horizontal seam, turned the placket pieces to the inside, and sewed the overlapped placket pieces to the bottom seam from the inside horizontally. I topstitched the seam allowance with a machine embroidery pattern, which helps to stabilize the placket. I used the walking foot on my Janome for most of the sewing, and finished the seams using my overlocker.


The placket is fastened with snap fasteners sewn so that the stitches are not obvious at the outside of the placket. To my mild annoyance, you can just see the outline of the nickle fasteners through the fabric. I am vaguely considering swapping these over for white or clear fasteners next time I come across them, but suspect this may be too much work for a mere beach top.

For the neckline and sleeve hem finish, I used the curly-raw-edge finish that Hen describes as her third method of neckline binding at this excellent post on how to vary t shirts.
I am pleased with the curliness.


You can see at the sleeve that I had to piece the fabric to squeeze such a long top from 1m of fabric. I am telling myself that this is a design feature. The fabric came as a tube, which helped with layout efficiency.

When I wrote about the hemp sheets I made last week, some Australian seamstresses commented that they did not think it was legal to grow hemp in Australia. I was pretty sure I had actually seen some growing near here, with big signs everywhere saying that it was a non drug crop, so I looked this up.
I was pleased to find that despite previous restrictions under early drug acts, where all types of hemp were assumed to have high THC levels,Industrial Hemp (low THC) has been grown, legally, in Australia for several decades, under license and regulation by the department of primary industry or agriculture in each state where it is permitted.

It is currently legally grown in Queensland (1986), Western Australia, Tasmania (1991)and New South Wales (2008). I am not aware of any hemp fabric production here.


Gardams said...

Your top looks great, perfect for cruisung the shops or a coffee on Hastings Street, enjoy your time away.

sewing spots said...

Great details on your top!

Carolyn said...

That is so interesting, I had no idea this was the case! Thank you for looking this up.
The cover up top looks really well finished off. Enjoy your time with your friends on Hastings Street!

Mary Nanna said...

That placat looks like WORK. It's one of those things that has to be done so accurately I do not envy you at all.The holiday in Noosa sounds envy worth though - hope you have a great time, now that you have the right beach coverup you are at least putting best foot forward..

a little sewing said...

I really like your placket technique and the piecing on the sleeves. It so much more interesting this way! And I did not even notice the nickle color of the snaps until you pointed it out. I hope it escapes any further annoyance :) because it's a great looking top. Do a lot of people wear long sleeves as sun protection where you are? I'd be worried it's too hot, but I am very concerned about having adequate sun protection when on the beach.

And the binding - I like Hen's binding technique. It's cute.

Carol said...

I love your design details. I've seen legal hemp plantations here. If only people could get past the whole drug thing and realise that hemp is a really incredible plant. As you know, I live in hippy country and every year bear witness to the helicopter raids on the THC laden hemp. In fact, last year there was a raid in the valley where I lived that involved road blocks, police dogs and a SWAT team!

velosewer said...

You top looks great. When I visited the Margaret River Hemp Co they had all the details about it being legally grown. Now you can 'endure' Noosa in comfort and style - lucky woman. Enjoy the break. I've worn a knit hemp top and it was worth it.