I have to tell you that I almost gave the game away this month! I’ve been wearing this Seamwork Kari romper on and off since I made it and I allmooossttt put a picture on my Instagram account for Me Made May. Argh! Luckily, I realised in the nick of time and didn’t post. This romper is just a perfect summer garment – breezy, so easy to fit and with secret shorts – what’s not to love?
It’s also named after my fellow Seamwork Ambassador who is called Kari (I bet you guessed that already) She makes so many great garments and is such a nice person – check out her account at @littlebrickhouse on Instagram. Her namesake pattern is, as you can see, a romper. For me, that is such a funny name, because where I come from rompers are only worn by babies. We would call this lots of other things, but not a romper. Still, now that I’ve used the name, it’s stuck in my head, so I’ll probably be calling it a romper forevermore, although it will still definitely, definitely always conjure up a mental image of me wearing a giant babygro.
Pattern and Sizing
The Kari comes in Seamwork’s two ranges: the Misses C cup range, which runs from sizes 00 to 16 or 32″ to 44″ bust and the Curvy DD cup range, which runs from 12 to 26 or 40-54″ bust. There is a ton of ease in this garment, so the bust measurement is likely to be the most important measurement for most people. Technically, my measurements are a 16, but I actually have a frame around the 12-14 mark, judging by past makes. Normally I would cut a 14 and do an FBA and grade out at the tummy and hips. However, due to the large amount of ease I just cut a straight 14 this time – and a 12 would doubtless have been fine too. All Seamwork patterns are drafted for a height of 5’8″. I’m 5’6″, but made no adjustments to the height as I wanted to see where it fell, and I liked it the way it was in the end.
Whew! Okay, so the pattern itself is actually fairly simple. The front and back both have a centre front seam, and I’m not entirely sure as to the reason other than to use less fabric, but I would consider eliminating them another time, if fabric allowed and I was trying to match. The pieces are pretty large and unwieldy and you need a lot of fabric to get your seam to match – especially if the fabric is directional. My fabric was only 45″ wide, so I had to make do with what I could cut (I used alll of the 3.5 yards) and one of my pieces had to be cut upside down, and one of the lining pieces pieced together. It’s not a big deal, but it would be annoying if your plans go array because of this.
Once the front and back are sewn together, it’s really just a matter of sewing the legs, performing the same initial steps with the lining pieces and then sewing the lining/facing and outer garment together. The instructions are super and I breezed through construction. There are no closures on the Kari and so you find your perfect fit by tying the lovely little straps together at the shoulder and adjusting as you like. My one complaint is that my pockets were really low. This could be partly because of the height discrepancy, partly because I wear my neckline a little lower than some, or… they could just be low. I don’t know, but I recommend checking the placement before you sew them up.
Oh – one other tip. The lining is attached at a seam allowance of 3/8″, so don’t do what I did and staystitch automatically at 1/2″ since you know Seamwork’s seam allowances are normally 5/8″. You can see my staystitching on the right side in some pics and, while, it doesn’t really bother me, it could potentially look bad. I know I shouldn’t really be telling you all my cock-ups since now that’s all you’re going to see, but, – ach, hopefully it’s of some help to someone!
The fabric is a beautiful piece of rayon challis I’ve been waiting to use. It’s from the Airflow collection by Sasha Ignatiadou for Ruby Star Society. As I was saying to someone on Instagram, it’s a good job more of it didn’t come in rayon or other garment weights or I’d have bought a lot more! As it was I bought another piece or two in cotton, it’s so lovely. It’s perfect for the Kari, although I think the pattern would be just as nice sewn up in linen or a soft lawn… lots of things really.
The bonus adaption for the Kari is a dress version, which is another fun option. My fellow Seamwork ambassadors have sewn lots of cute versions this month, so head on over to the #seamworkkari hashtag on Instagram to check them out, or I guess the ladies at Seamwork will be featuring them at some point.
Now that I’ve been wearing it so much, I really want to cut another one, so there’s no better indication of a successful pattern than that!
Note: I’m a member of the Seamwork ambassador team, which gives me a chance to have some input into the behind-the-scenes workings over at Seamwork HQ, giving feedback on patterns, magazine articles, etc. In return I am subscribed to the service for free for a year. Nevertheless, I’m not under any obligation to write subjective reviews of Seamwork patterns and all opinions remain my own.