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Five Things: Tunic Time

Five Things: Tunic Time
May 12, 2014 Mary Jo


Some time last summer I had an important revelation about the jersey knits that dominated my wardrobe’s upper half:  they weren’t doing me any favors.  They have no filter.  They reveal all – every. topographical. detail. of this worn-in Momma body.  These shirts are Captain Obvious.  They’re not doing me any favors.  Woven fabrics, however, like the linens and cottons I favor, are rarely prone to stating the obvious.  They merely suggest.  They may even create illusions of a sleeker core.  I’m not opposed to a little well-placed magic.

So I instituted a mass exodus of said jersey knits from my wardrobe and found that not much remained.  And yet cultural norms dictated that I wear something on my upper half (as did my own sensibility) so a little problem-solving was in order.  The answer:  tunics.



It is not at all hard to find a fantastic tunic pattern.  I had several to choose from.  What I ended up with as a Master Pattern was a synthesis of several patterns, peppered with my own modifications and tweaks.  I made a muslin, which came out pretty darn close to perfect.  Then I cut up an interesting nubby cotton bedspread and paired it with a dark plum velvet and made myself my new favorite shirt.


I love the way it fits, the way it wears.  There is no rude clinginess, no blurting out of all my secrets — I could have a killer body under there!  Only I and The Mister know for sure.  Wink.  I feel like a million buck in it.



A pattern like that deserves to be duplicated, varied, celebrated.  With that burst of confidence I found I was finally able to cut into the lovely Nani Iro double gauze that I snagged in Portland, ME two years ago.  How does this pattern translate to a dress length?  My quick slap-dash muslin says “very well indeed.”


Another piece of Nani Iro double gauze has done significantly less time on my shelves; the deep blues joined my collection in March, while on a trip to Indianapolis.  The shimmery grey/taupe loose weave linen also shown here marks last fall’s trip to Savannah.  Maybe it wants to be a tunic with a boat neck.  Maybe you should also note that fabric and/or yarn make the best souvenirs.



Find the whole Five Things: Finished Objects series here:

Tunic Time

Tunic Time


Solstice Garb

The Nay Sweater

The Nay Sweater

The Yea Sweater

The Yea Sweater


The Epic Winter Quilt

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