Choo's Ruby Star Society Uniform Tunic & Willow Tank

Posted by Julie Miles on

Choo here for my first blog post!

Normally I’m a SENCO by day and sewist by night. However, it’s lockdown here in the UK at the moment and sewing has really helped me find some headspace and purpose over the last few weeks.

I’m a huge fan of the Grainline Studio patterns and especially the ever-faithful Willow Tank pattern. It was the pattern responsible for my love of bias bound necklines and never again will I use a facing unless I really have to! Anyway, more on that pattern later.

bias bound neckline

The Uniform Tunic, also by Grainline Studio, was originally part of a collaboration between Grainline and Madder. When the love for the tunic led to it becoming released as a stand-alone pattern, it was a no-brainer for me.

For my first blog post, I chose the gorgeous Ruby Star Society ‘Horizon’ fabric in sand. It comes in three other colourways but it was mustard for me all the way. The fabric is a 70% cotton and 30% linen mix which makes it perfect for a range of sewing projects. I’ve seen people use it for all sorts from bags, to pinafore dresses, to home furnishings.

It’s probably worth noting that Grainline Studio is an American company and this is reflected in the sizing and instructions. I graded from a size 4 underarm to a size 8 hip and put washi tape on my machine to show the required ½” seam allowance as my Janome 7025 plate is primarily in centimetres.

grainline studio uniform tunic

Maybe not so obvious in that picture above is that I mistakenly cut the bodice in two pieces instead of on the fold! I’d just made a Grainline Studio Hadley Top and had that pattern in my head! However, I just matched the two pieces up, sewed them together, top stitched and I actually really like the end result.

grainline studio uniform tunic

Top tips:

The pattern doesn’t tell you to finish the edges on your pocket pieces before attaching them to the bodice. I would definitely do this first next time as it’s tricky to finish those well once constructed.

Assembling the pockets

Also, there are no notches on the pocket pieces to show where to align them with the notches on the bodice. To overcome this, I folded the pocket pieces in half and pressed them and did the same between the notches on the bodice so I knew everything was central.

And this was the finished article! I’m pretty happy with the fit, the length and I’m really glad I unpicked and reset the right sleeve when it just wasn’t quite right first time round.

grainline studio uniform tunic

The fabric also matches my favourite headscarf, which is the only thing keeping my hair under control at the moment. Hands up if you can’t wait to see a hairdresser post-lockdown?!

lockdown chic hairstyle

And the bonus was that I’ve had enough left over for two-ish other projects. I squeeeeeezed a Willow Tank out of the left overs and even used the scraps in an improvised wall hanging.

grainline studio willow tank

Grainline Studio Willow Tank

Improvised wallhanging - we love this! What a fantastic use for scraps!

I think this pattern is going to become an absolute staple in my wardrobe. I want to make another that’s hacked into a summer top and maybe another without sleeves that is hacked into a summer dress.

Thanks so much for reading and happy sewing to you!

grainline studio willow tank and uniform tunic in ruby star society horizon canvas

A very efficient use of 2.5m of 110cm wide fabric!

You can see more of Choo's stunning makes by following her on Instagram.

Choo was provided with £30 towards this fabric in exchange for her blog post and photos. She was allowed to choose what she made with the fabric, and all thoughts and opinions are her own.

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