For Mini Capsule Wardrobe Month we’re bring you a Royal Rumble! Part Pattern Throwdown and part Same Pattern, Different Bodies. We came up with the idea for this post when we realized that both of us (Michelle and Jessica) were planning to do a side-by-side comparison of the Cashmerette Springfield and the new version of the Colette Sorbetto woven shell patterns. Someone made the comment, “Hey, you both have very different body types–how about combining that with a Same Pattern, Different Bodies post?” Hence, the Royal Rumble was born.
Woven shells are a natural fit to a capsule wardrobe. They can be made out of a wide variety of fabrics and can be worn with pants or skirt and can be layered with ease. They are also quick to sew and take little fabric yardage. Win!
Colette’s Sorbetto – Free PDF available in sizes 0-26 (bust 33-54 inches).
Cashmerette’s Springfield – $14 pdf or $18 printed in sizes 12-28,C-H (bust 40-58 inches). The Springfield doesn’t include any sleeved views, but does have a cap sleeve add-on that’s available through Cashmerette’s Pattern Hacking for Curves online course.
Will the popular freebie prove to be a worthy competitor, or will the Springfield prove that you really do get what you pay for?
- Bust: 55
- Waist: 48
- Hip: 54
- Bra Size: 44GG
- Sorbetto size: 24
- Springfield size: 26 G/H bust graded to 28 waist/hip
Jessica from Always a Crafty Lady a slightly hippy hourglass who is just now losing her breastfeeding cup size. She used Free Spirit Voile for both shells.
- Bust: 42
- Waist: 36
- Hip: 47
- Bra Size: 34F
First up is the popular and free pattern Colette Sorbetto, which was recently re-released with extended sizing and additional views. The pattern comes in 22 files to make printing easier. Note that the Sorbetto has two different block options–a misses’ block for sizes 0-16 and a curvy block for sizes 18-26. Sizes 0-16 are drafted for a C cup bust, while sizes 18-26 are drafted for a DD cup bust. In addition to the traditional sleeveless shell, the updated Sorbetto includes a view with short sleeves. The download also includes a table of contents to help print only the pieces you need.
For this rumble, Jessica sewed the Sorbetto using the misses’ block sizes, while Michelle used the curvy block sizes.
Colette Sorbetto: Michelle’s Take
I was super curious about the newly offered sleeved view–both for myself and as “research purposes,” given that I’d seen a ton of questions on the CSC Facebook group about the sleeved view (View 3). I know that many curvy women prefer sleeved over sleeveless, so if it worked out, the sleeved view seemed like a nice offering to include in the Sorbetto download package. Before I did anything else, I printed out and whipped up a quick muslin of the sleeved view. While this post concentrates on comparing the two sleeveless shells, I wanted to include a bit of info and photos for the sleeved Sorbetto for anyone who might be curious.
As you can see, this muslin has some major issues with the armscye/sleeve:
- The sleeves are huge, but there’s some sort of weird binding going on that’s constricting my arm movement.
- There’s a weird flap of fabric coming from the armhole and extending towards my bust. This goes well beyond the typical “folds above the bust” that many of us with large busts see.
As soon as I tried this muslin on, I went “nope, not going to proceed with this” and moved on to the sleeveless version. Out of curiosity, I compared the pattern pieces of the sleeved vs. sleeveless views by overlaying the sleeveless pattern piece on top of the sleeved one:
I highlighted the edge of the sleeveless version in red so that you could see the difference. You can see how much wider the shoulder is on the sleeved version. The sleeved version also has about 0.5″ (1 cm) more ease at the side seams, adding up to about 2″ more body ease all around.
Thankfully, the sleeveless version fit a lot better than the sleeveless, although this wasn’t without considerable tweaking on my part:
First, I muslined the sleeveless Sorbetto and found that it had two major fit issues:
- Major armhole gape
- Darts that ended on my bust apex (as opposed to being backed off by 1-2″ for a large bust).
In the version pictured (my first non-muslin version), I backed the bust darts off by 2″ and raised the armhole by 3/4″. Even with that adjustment, I still needed to add a an armhole dart (before I did the bias binding step) to mostly eliminate the gape.
Unusual for me, I did not need to lower the bust darts–the positioning was fine for me; the darts were just too long. However, I nearly always need to lower bust darts, which makes me think that these were drafted to sit lower than a typical commercial pattern block
Colette Sorbetto: Jessica’s Take
I found downloading the pattern somewhat overwhelming. So many different files to sort through! I really rarely wear sleeves, especially in our hot summers, and opted to go straight to Version I. Once I found the correct file the printing process was easy. The pdf was quick to tape together as everything matched up well and was clearly marked. My biggest gripe is my bust and waist fit into a different size set than my hips. To accommodate the difference I graded out the hip an extra 1/4 inch on each side seam. In the end I made a size 12 shoulders, 14 bust, 16 waist, and 18ish hip.
Sewing the Sorbetto together went well, but the initial fit was slightly off. Before adding the bias trim I gave the Sorbetto a quick try on.
It is a little hard to see, but the arm hole is deep enough to show my bra band and the bust darts ended too low. I ended up taking the shoulder seams up 3/4 in which solved both the too long arm opening and the dart placement.
The finished blouse fits decently well. I’d re-do the neckline next time to make it lower. The neckline also sits strangely as you can see it stands up away from my neck in the back. I also think it has too much volume in the back or needs more ease. To be honest Sorbetto feels a little like a maternity tunic when worn untucked.
My husband and I both agree we like it better tucked in, though it could still use less volume in the back. My husband also thought this was the fancier of the two patterns due to the pleat and higher neckline.
Next up is the Cashmerette Springfield! The printed pattern comes with the typical high quality instruction booklet and easy to decipher printed pattern. It includes all the sizes in the envelope including separate fronts for the C/D, E/F, and G/H cup sizes.
Cashmerette Springfield: Michelle’s Take
Out of the envelope, the Springfield was much easier to fit than the Sorbetto. The Springfield had no armhole gape for me, and if you look at the pattern pieces (Sorbetto laid over Springfield), it’s easier to see why:
I had made the Springfield previously (albeit in more forgiving printed fabrics, including a soft double gauze), so I knew pretty much what to expect. For the sake of this blog post, here’s the Springfield in the same cotton lawn as the Sorbetto, just in a different colorway:
The thing that I love about the Springfield is that it’s a sleeveless woven top with no armhole gape–something that I’ve never experienced in any other sleeveless commercial pattern. There are no armhole tweaks in these photos, and no bra or extra side boob/back side boob flesh showing.
I did make two pattern alterations to my Springfield
- Lower the bust darts by 1.5″ (a fairly standard adjustment for me)
- Grade from a size 26 G/H bust to a 28 waist/hip
From these photos, it looks like I could still use a little more room over the rear high hip; however, I don’t get those same pull lines in my (more forgiving) double gauze version of this top.
Cashmerette Springfield: Jessica’s Take
I used the printed Springfield pattern and it was easy to use. Looking at the size chart I settled on a size 14 C/D graded out to a 16 at the waist and hip. The sizing surprised me because in the past I’ve used the G/H pattern pieces, but since this is my first time using the Springfield I went by my currently (shrinking) bust measurement.
The pattern went together really easily and quickly. I love the yoke detail in the back as it give the shell less of a I-made-it-at-home look. More polished.
I really like how this fits in the front above bust line. Slightly big across the back yoke, but with enough ease to move. I also like the neckline, but as with the Sorbetto, the Springfield hangs oddly in the back. This time with too much length instead of width.
I also prefer this shell tucked in rather than worn out. My husband commented it was more of a weekend style for me, but I could see it working well for the office if I threw on a cardigan. Easily done as the office is usually chilly in the summer.
For my next version I want to try the princess seam back to see if it work better tucked in. Not quite so voluminous. I’ll also work it in a nice and forgiving print. Solids really show off every little fit issue!
My pattern pieces weren’t very different. The front armhole is practically identical and the shoulder line was also nearly the same. The biggest place there Springfield and Sorbetto differ is in the back armhole. Sorbetto was both deeper and wider! Otherwise the differences were mostly in the style lines.
While the final fit of these two patterns (at least the sleeveless versions) isn’t terribly different, for me, the Springfield wins by an armhole. It’s a joy to be able to sew this pattern straight up without having to pin and dart out armhole excess to avoid exposing my bra. However, given some of the negative early buzz (and my disastrous sleeved muslin), I was pleasantly surprised by the sleeveless Sorbetto.
Oh, this is a close one for me. I’d read a lot of reviews online about both patterns. Some wrote about the Sorbetto having armhole issues, and others finding the Springfield’s shoulders too wide. In the end both fit me decently well right from the start. I’ll give it to Springfield mostly because I didn’t need to alter it to have the bust darts and shoulders sit well, though I do still like the Sorbetto pleat for the office. Also because the Springfield is the shell I most reach for in my closet. Isn’t that what really matters?