The Plantain by Deer and Doe is a brilliant pattern; I’ve made quite a few. This time around I wanted to give it a different vibe with a split, square, high-low hem.
Pattern: The Plantain is a free download. I especially like how well it fits around the bust and then subtly flares out to skim the rest of the torso. I also find the neckline great – not too high and restrictive or low and revealing.
As per pattern, the hemline is just straight around at approx. hip level but I decided for this hack I’d like a cropped version that would work well with high waisted skirts (such as the MN Axel I’m wearing here) and jeans.
The length in the back hem makes the top a little edgier and also has the bonus of hiding VPL’s. Hehe!
Fabric: The fabric is a polyester spandex stretch knit with stretch in both directions. It’s extremely soft but with good recovery and I’m considering purchasing more as I think it would make a great bodysuit. (I purchased it from here but I think it is labelled wrong on the website as it’s more like this fabric.) I think the black, red and white tartan works well the the style of this hack.
Conclusion: I really like this alternative version of a Plantain tee. I think I managed to get the hem lengths spot-on and should be able to mix and match it with quite a few of my existing wardrobe pieces.
Here is a quick tutorial on how I created this simple hack…
- I used an existing Plantain tee to determine how high I wanted the front hem and how low I wanted the back hem. If you don’t already have a Plantain sewn up you could hold the pattern pieces up to yourself and mark directly onto the pattern.
- I created the new hemlines by transferring the soft curve of the existing hemline up (or down) to the new markings. This will be where your hem ends so you’ll also need to allow extra length for turning the hem up – I allowed 2cm. On the front pattern piece I marked a notch along the side seam that was 4cm up from the hemline – this is to create a small split in the side seam.
- I decided I wanted the tee to hang a little more straight and boxy so I removed the slight curve in the side seams. To do this I made a mark 1.5cm out from the existing pattern notches on the side seams, connecting the bottom of the arm scythe to this new mark to create straight side seam lines. I then cut out the front, back, sleeve and neckband pieces out of my fabric.
- I finished the side seams of both the front and back pieces with an overlocker, taking care not to remove any of the seam allowance.
- I sewed the shoulder seams and neckband as per the instructions.
- The instructions have you sew the sleeves in flat – which is great – but because I was pressing my side seams open and didn’t want to do this to the sleeves, I sewed the sleeves seams so I could set them in once the side seams were sewn.
- I Pinned front to back, matching existing pattern notches and making sure to stop sewing at the notch marked for the side split. I pressed the side seam open and continued pressing the side split edges so the 1.5cm seam allowance was folded to the wrong side.
- I sewed the edges of the side split at back and front using my coverstitch machine (you could also use a zig-zag stitch or twin needle. You may want to reinforce the where the side seam ands and the split starts by sewing back and forth over this.
- I folded the front and back hems up by the 2cm hem allowance and also used the coverstitch to sew. In this picture you can see where I have used a dissolvable tape – this tape is brilliant to use when your machine decides to try and ‘eat’ fine fabric (as my coverstitch was doing) – I usually lay it under the fabric and on top of the feed dogs and then sew as normal. The fabric just glides through easy-peasy. The tape then washes away (as you can see in photo 8.)