MBM - Tessuti Frankie

The Tessuti Frankie pattern has been high in the queue, pretty much since it was released last year. It’s taken me a while to get to the point of posting a result though. 
The first attempt failed, because I mistook a PDF joining line for centre back, and cut the back about 5cm too narrow. When I took the piece to the sewing machine, it was immediately obvious it was too narrow, but it took me ages to figure out why. There’s was no going back from that one, especially I had no fabric to cut another back.
I'm blaming my husband. He printed the pattern off for me at work, but because of some printing kerfuffle, the print came to me out of order. So I was confused (or more confused than normal :)) 
So this is the second attempt.

The fabric is quite a thick cotton jersey from Spotlight that I picked up on a 40% off sale. The jersey is probably a bit too thick for this pattern, but I liked the print so I went with it.
The Frankie comes in three dress lengths, and four sleeve lengths. This is the top length, with elbow length sleeves. I cut a Size Medium, which is what I normally cut in a Tessuti pattern. I made a 1”FBA, and added width to the sleeves by slashing the sleeve pattern piece from bottom to top, leaving a hinge. I spread the bottom by 5cm. That strikes me as quite a lot to add to a sleeve. I normally have to add some width, but my normal 1”was nowhere near enough.
The jersey print was off-grain. Sigh. Just had to do my best with that!
Sewing the pattern was straightforward. The front neckline is turned and stitched. The back neckline has a facing, which wraps over the shoulder seam allowance for a neat finish. The facing is topstitched down.
The resulting t-shirt is wearable (even if the fabric is a bit heavy for the hottest days of summer), but I have some reservations which I will address in future versions. The front neckline is high on me, so I’ll cut that a bit lower next time. But the big bugbear is the short shoulder seams, which end about 1.5cm short of my shoulder “points” (hope that makes sense). I suppose that is the design, because adding length to shoulder seams is not something I’ve had to do before. Anyway, I find it annoying, so I’ll  be adding length here next time.

I’ve had a few nice comments about the top, and I will wear it as is, even with my reservations. I would really like to improve the fit of this pattern, because I think a version in wool jersey for winter would be something to aim for.


  1. Despite your issues with the pattern, this top has turned out very well. Your fabric choice is lovely and I'm sure it will be well worn over the coming months. I have noticed lots of other Frankie's having short shoulder seams too. It must be a design feature.

    1. Thanks Jean - yes, I've noticed a lot of reviewers have mentioned the short shoulder seam, which makes me think it's a design feature. Not all of us can have broad shoulders, and narrow shoulders isn't something I've noticed in the Tessuti draft before.

  2. This looks lovely and due to the fabric you've chosen - different!. I think I will have to get this pattern, as for once it sounds like I wouldn't have to shorten the shoulder seam!

    1. Thank you - if you have to routinely adjust the shoulder seam to narrow it, I think you've found your pattern!

  3. Your fabric choice is really nice so perhaps you will get some more use for it during autumn but I see what you mean about the neckline. I find pressure there is a bit choking. I can too that the shoulder seam looks short but it doesn't look bad. Does that bit feel uncomfortable for you ? Hope your weather has cooled down now. I was certainly glad to be living in Victoria this past summer.

  4. Thanks Janine - the combination of the high neckline and the narrow shoulders feels not exactly uncomfortable, just a bit odd. Not enough to stop me from wearing this version, which I hope to wear often as the weather cools down. This summer, especially January, has been a doozy. It's been raining for the last week, so hopefully that dry, hot stuff is over!

  5. That neckline is high and even though the shoulders look good, they do look a bit short. All said you have a very wearable top in a great fabric.


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