So, guys, here’s your disclaimer: I’m a bit of a Paprika Patterns fangirl. I adore the Jasper Sweater/Dress, and when Lisa asked for testers again for her new pattern, I jumped at the chance—even though it’s a woven T-shirt, and how many more of those do we really need?… Lisa didn’t disappoint me, she came up with something slightly different (dropped shoulders, a fun crop top version with interesting waist darts)—and she was as lovely to work with as she was last time. She takes her testers’ feedback very seriously, and I really appreciate that.
I made three versions of the Onyx before the pattern was even released. It’s quick and easy to make—particularly the sleeveless version—and everything fit together nicely for me. I first made the crop top version in a plaid, so that version still shows some flaws that were fixed in the final version of the pattern and/or that I figured out after my first try: 1. the bias binding around the neckline and armholes is too wide (the width wasn’t specified in the test pattern, but now is), which makes the neckline, in particular, not sit quite right; 2. the armholes are too small for me and not quite comfortable; and 3. the crop top is too short on me.
This is the test version of the Paprika Patterns Onyx Shirt. The plaid version (which is my “official” test version) is a straight View B in a straight size 2. The floral viscose version is also a View B, except for the View A length—in a size 2, graded to a size 3 for the hips.
The matching pyjama shorts for my summer pyjama set are another pair of Measure Twice / Cut Once Darcy Boxers, with the exact same adjustments as I made for my boyfriend’s tractor-print version. Yes, my boyfriend and I wear the same size of boxers. They fit us slightly differently, but they look fine on both of us, so I didn’t feel like adjusting them any further for myself. I left off the (faux) fly and French-seamed them this time.
The plaid fabric was left over from a tank top I made last summer; it’s off grain and so I figured I’d finally use it for something in order to get rid of it. I cut the back on the bias because I really didn’t feel like matching the plaid on my test version, but I couldn’t just not match it either.
The floral fabric is 100% viscose and really soft and drapey. I got it for a steal from Müller. I don’t love the print, but the quality felt nice and I liked the colours well enough, so I figured it would work for a possibly-wearable toile, or something like summer pyjamas.
The plaid crop top was my “official” test version, and thus I made it exactly as drafted.
For the pyjama top version, I made a few little adjustments:
I graded from a size 2 to a size 3 for the hips. The fit of the pattern is somewhat roomy, but I hate it when my tops are too tight around my derrière, so I wanted to make sure there would be enough ease—and I’m quite glad I did.
I shortened the pattern by 3cm. I think that the original length actually looks lovely, but I measured the finished length as stated on the pattern while wearing the matching boxers, and I thought that it was slightly too long to look good with the very short shorts. I think that I was right about that and I’m quite happy with the proportions of the set.
I lowered the armholes by 1cm. On the original crop top, they are slightly too small and cut in a bit, which isn’t very comfortable. I don’t know whether the original armholes would work for me if I added the sleeves, but I do know that I like my adjusted ones a lot more for the sleeveless version.
What I want to do differently next time
I generally despise high/low hems, but I kinda like the dramatic one on the Onyx crop top, and overall I think that that version is fun. But it’s definitely too short on me—I’m not a teenager any more, and I’m already wearing high-waisted shorts with it in the photos! I’ve actually made a slightly lengthened version already, but I made the mistake of lengthening both the front and the back pieces, and now the fabric pools in the small of my back—so I’ll have to unpick the hem, shorten the top a bit in the back, and sew a new hem, and I haven’t felt like doing that yet.
I’m really happy with the fit of the longer version. If I’d meant to wear it as a regular T-shirt rather than a pyjama top, I wouldn’t have shortened it, but together with the boxers, I think the length is great. When (not if!) I make a T-shirt version to wear outside the house, I’ll probably stick with the original length.
I want to try out the sleeves, and when I do, I’ll try the original armhole again. It might feel fine with the sleeves even if it doesn’t (on me) without them.
Photos taken by my boyfriend.