But Lose the Issy

1 Stylearc Issy

Sophisticated figure-hugging folds redolent of a classical statue, or a dog’s dinner?

Yeah…  1 issy pattern envelope

About that….

I’d had this Stylearc Issy Knit Top on the top of my to-do list for so long that I forgot it was given to me.  This meant that I made the mistake of assuming it was a size 8 like the other Stylearc patterns that I’ve bought (for those uninitiated to this company, the pattern comes in the one size you order).  In fact, it’s a 12.  Even so, and despite my taking it in at all seams, this is huge and the ruching which pools below the waist bears little resemblance to the drawing on the envelope.

A previous review warned that the asymmetric neckline (i.e. the diagonal slant at centre front) is difficult to finish and the underneath tends to flip to the right side.  To prevent this, I decided to trace the top section of the pattern to the bust and make a facing.  This worked fine.  I also found it easy to construct the ‘clever’ and ‘distinctive’ neckline formed by folding back the inner wings of the pattern towards the shoulders.  It’s certainly a style unlike any I’ve tried before and the instructions were thorough.1 issy front pattern1 mournful shroudBut the result is this cowled look which I’ve been seeing on womenswear for a few years now.  At first it seemed an elegant alternative to the simple jersey top but I’ve come to the party too late and it’s all a bit hackneyed.

I’d be happy to post this pattern to anyone up for the challenge of making a better job.  You need to be a UK size 12-14, though there might be less ease if your jersey is tight or thicker than my drapey viscose.  Leave me a message and if there’s more than one ‘applicant’, I’ll do a draw.  The paper is only in an OK condition: it has the inevitable pin marks plus a rip and a scratch where Blogstalker loyally savaged the pattern on my behalf!

Stylearc Issy: Back View with diagonal hem

Stylearc Issy: Back View with diagonal hem

15 thoughts on “But Lose the Issy

  1. Looks like you did a great job, Marianna, with a challenging pattern to get right. My own opinion is that the ruched, cowled look – especially on a top so long – is not for someone with your svelte figure. But then again, what do I know? Hope the pattern goes to a good home. Love the last line about the Blogstalker!

  2. I’m wondering how nice this would look made in a woven cut on the bias Marijana? Your picture seems to suggest it might be quite pretty? Thorough instructions are not something Style Arc are usually accused of! I fit a Style Arc 12, I can imagine it would swim on you! Despite how often these cowls pop up, I am curious as to how they’d look on a larger bust, flattering or frumpy? Hmmm. Send it my way if no one else wants it, but be warned… I’d be forced to send you something from ‘the boxes’ in return! Perhaps we could keep sending it around the world in a ‘Sisterhood of the travelling pants’ homage?

    • I had to Google “Sisterhood of the travelling pants” (muttering ‘what’s she going on about now?!’ 🙂 ) I’d love to send the pattern to you Lesley; I hate waste. Just don’t make it in black; methinks that’s part of the problem as it just looks so forlorn!

  3. Well done for finishing this. I know I would have given up! I always think somehow that asymmetric garments look like you’ve made a mistake somewhere, so making something that looks like you’ve made a mistake even when you haven’t doesn’t appeal ,if you see what I mean!

    • Hi Suzie, lovely to hear from you. I hope you’re all well 🙂

      You’re so right: it’s as if we’re programmed to be suspicious of asymmetry. One of my favourite hairstyles (on me) is the side bun but I do wonder if anyone thinks ‘that woman doesn’t know where the centre of her head is!’.

  4. You’ve definitely got some draping going on there at the front but I don’t think it’s so unattractive – just doesn’t look like the pattern. You made a new design!
    Shame you’re not keen on it especially after all your effort.

    • Well, that’s a lovely and positive interpretation 🙂 I’ve had encouraging comments on SPR too so I’m now soaking the top in a hottish wash and even if it doesn’t shrink, I’ll still wear the top once or twice to see if it surprises nicely!
      Oh, and thanks! 😉

  5. It’s sad that you don’t like this. I know it doesn’t look like the pattern picture but I think it looks nice. Would you be brave enough to add a picture of you wearing it?

  6. The more I read about Stylearc patterns the more I feel I want to avoid them.

    It looks very well made (of course!) but I have a thing about cowls – they make me look too busty and I feel like I’m drowning in fabric. You’re on the petite side aren’t you? Do you feel swamped?

    • Yes, that’s it: swamped. There’s a great comment on my SPR review suggesting that with draping, too much or in the wrong place can add on years. And I feel Victorian (the black doesn’t help)!

      As for Stylearc, I think you can get some interesting and stylish designs usually unafflicted by too much ease! If you’re confident, you can bypass the relative lack of instructions. But I’m amazed at how quickly they churn out new patterns: I can’t keep up!

    • That’s something a few people have said. As I increasingly measure bodies and study people’s figures, when I concentrate on detail I find we’re not naturally symmetrical so maybe we seek symmetry to compensate.

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