Like a lot of bloggers I set myself a few sewing goals at the start of January. Tying in with my fitness goals for the year, the McCalls 7634 tracksuit patterns really caught my eye.
I can't lie, what I instantly loved about this pattern was the deep neckline and the sexy crossover lacing. I thought this added a really unique twist to the standard tracksuit drawstring and I was excited about trying eyelets for the first time!
There are four different views to play about with for the tracksuit top, including a pouch pocket, crossover drawstring, cutaway shoulders, ribbed cuffs and waistband and longer length. I chose view A as I was excited about the matching cuffs and bottom band as well as the lacing. I made a size 12- with the only alteration to the pattern being adding an extra inch into the bodice length.
It looks a little short when you're cutting out, but you have to remember the ribbed band adds about 2.5 inches to the length. Size 12 was the largest in the small size. It's not meant to be too close fitting- I was really happy with the fit.
My fabric choice was the sportiest looking jersey from Abakhan. I'd intended to buy something a little fleecier, but I was really excited about the different grey gradients in the fabric so bought the lot. For the contrast (cuffs, drawstring and go-faster arm stripes) I decided to use all black. Cutting out the fabric was awkward as it was SO off-grain! The stripes on the fabric were not even remotely parallel to the selvedges, which meant I couldn't cut anything on the fold. I lined up the grainline on the pattern pieces so they were all at right angles to the stripes, it felt so wrong!! It literally looks like I was cutting everything out diagonally. I'm so glad I did though. Once the top started to take shape it really does rely on those stripes not being wonky!
The pattern is really easy to follow. The little neck panels are interfaced so we can bang those eyelets in later, then inserted into the front piece. The arm stripes are just grosgrain ribbon stitched onto the sleeve before the underarm seam is stitched. Make sure you transfer all the pattern markings to make sure the ribbon is straight when you sew it on! The sleeve stripe joins a shoulder stripe, so you gotta make sure they line up perfectly when you stitch the sleeves in.
Would absolutely love to make a black and white one next but worried Adidas might already be after me ;)
There's not much to say about the hood construction. It's really easy, you just sew the two hood pieces together then press the seam and topstitch. The head hole is turned under 6mm then a further 3cm then topstitched. To insert you just line up all the notches and markings then go for it!
The cuffs are cut from rib knit. They are deliberately shorter than the bottom of the sleeve so that you can stretch them out as you sew, then they gather up the sleeve fabric to make for a lovely fitted cuff. The bottom band is inserted in exactly the same way.
The final stage is the scariest!! Inserting the eyelets! I'm going to do a separate little step-by-step post on how to do this. It's not as scary as it first sounds though! You just have to make sure all your eyelets placements are marked out clearly and in line, then you can ensure the little hole you snip for the eyelet is in exactly the right place.
Threading the lace through the eyelets is probably one of the most satisfying things I've done in my sewing-life! So pleased! It's guaranteed my next make will be the matching bottoms. I have so much fabric left over I'm probably going to make the shorts too. This pattern is so great, it's really simple to put together but looks really professional when it's done. Can't wait to hit the track.
Wonder what blog post is coming next........?????
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