When I was in my early twenties, I used to wear bodysuits a lot. Comfy, cute, and very nice to wear. I wanted to sew one, but I didn’t want a lycra-type of bodysuit. I wanted a woven top/lycra bottom one.
A sewing friend told me about the Charlie bodysuit by Apolline patterns. I had a look and it was exactly what I was looking for. I bought it straightaway.
Charlie and its options
You can sew either a plain shirt or a bodysuit.
It offers 2 collars and 3 types of sleeves.
Sizes range from 36 to 46 (French sizing) and the PDF costs 9.90 euros.
I chose to sew the bodysuit version with the Peter Pan collar and long sleeves.
I had this wonderful poplin by Art GAllery Fabrics, found on the Minerva website.
Pattern and fabric were meant for each other.
The bottom part was sewn with a remnant from my purple loungewear garment, a great stretch velvet with awesome recovery. La partie culotte a été cousue dans un restant de velours extensible qui me restait de ma tenue loungewear.
When things start to go awry
First things first: reading the instructions. Well, they sounded a bit light. My sewing friend told me that might be because of a Youtube tutorial. Ok, then. We’ll compensate with the YT video. Shirts will be shirts, right? Nothing new under the sun.
The ize chart put me in a size 44 for the bust (just under size 44) and 46 for the bottom. I’m at the end of the chart. Not very inclusive, IMO.
A quick look at the pattern pices convinced me not to do my usual alterations i.e. narrow shoulders and small upper back. The height it was drafted for is 168 cm, I’m 164 cm, we should be good.
And off I went cutting into my beautiful AG fabric…See, what’s looming ahead? I DIDN’T SEW A MUSLIN.
Spiralling into disaster
I’ll make it short because you can read it on my Minerva blogpost, but everything went from bad to worse. Nothing could be saved. Every drafting error was made.
The only thing I like is my collar!!!
I really wonder if sizes 44 and 46 were thoroughly tested. How can I feel so constricted in a garment with measurements slightly below the size chart? And with an adequate printed square.
I should have sewn a muslin, that’s my first mistake, especially with a new-to-me designer. I’m so sad to have spoilt such a beautiful AGF coupon.
For now, the infamous Charlie is on the rubbish pile. I may unpick its seams one day and cut into it to make something for my tiny teenage daughter.
Have you ever tried a pattern designer and got an epic fail? Please share in comments (I won’t feel alone!)
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