Sewaholic’s Renfrew Tee Review and Giveaway // Stretch Yourself

This series is sponsored by Baby Lock. For over 40 years,  Babylock has been dedicated to the love of sewing by creating machines for sewing, embroidery, quilting and serging – all with ease-of-use, high quality and a touch of elegance.stretch-yourself-logo

I’m not the first person, and I won’t be the last to fall in love with the Renfrew Tee. It’s everything a t-shirt pattern should be—flattering, functional , and fast.  This will definitely become a staple, and more than that—a fantastic base pattern. It’s got a beautiful fit so it’s a perfect jumping off point to alter or draft any number of different styles and looks.mad mim_stretch yourself_Renfrew pattern review_01

mad mim_stretch yourself_Renfrew pattern review_05

The very first thing you notice when beginning this project is how commercial the pattern is—sort of. It has the tissue paper patterns, which I love, and also the traditional flow and fold-out format.  What’s very UNcommercial, is how fresh and very clear it is, with awesome step-by-step diagrams.  The instructions are detailed and thorough, and perfectly illustrated.

It comes together smoothly and pretty quickly. One thing that I really loved was the neckband to neck opening ratio, as well as the markings for matching them up. She’ll nailed it! Usually—like always—you have to work with that distribution to get it to lie perfectly flat, but this pattern really took the guess work out of it and resulted in a lovely-looking neck band.   This one was a picture the very first time, so that was great.  Instead of turning the hems under, this pattern finishes both sleeve and hem with bands. I lengthened the sleeve a tad and did the sleeve bands, but opted to hem mine normally because I (foolishly) only bought a yard to work with and didn’t have enough fabric.  It’s an easy alteration though; just add 5 or 6 inches to the bottom and turn it under. Next time I’ll make it even a bit longer.

The last thing I want to mention about this pattern is it’s versatility, and flattering fit. It has lots of variations (round neck/v-neck, sleeve length), and I really love that it has a cowl option.  I think that variation would look killer with some sweatshirt fleece—very much like the cowl hoodie that I’ve seen popping up on Pinterest.  The fit is so nice! It’s fitted, but not tight, and the sizing seemed spot on.

The Renfrew makes an ideal entry level project , but really, it would be a great addition to any pattern collection.  A good solid tee pattern is worth it’s weight in needles, and in my opinion, this is the one to get.

mad mim_stretch yourself_Renfrew pattern review_03

Details. Pattern: Sewaholic‘s Renfree Tee, Fabric: Fabric Fairy‘s Meridian Garden Cotton Knit (I LOVE IT!!

Head over to Miranda‘s to see her Renfrew version! Love the pink floral!

To win your own copy of the lovely Renfrew Pattern, simply leave a comment below by January 20th, 6 pm MST! **closed**

And congratulations Tabitha, it’s your lucky day! You are the winner of our Fiskars giveaway! “What a great series. Thanks for all the tutorials and I’d LOVE to win the fiskars set!”  We’ll be in touch to get you your new cutting stuff!




  1. Posted January 14, 2013 at 6:28 am | Permalink

    fingers crossed!

  2. Posted January 14, 2013 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    I’ve heard great things about The Renfrew Top even though I haven’t used it. I’m sticking to lingerie!

  3. Jillishness
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    I’ve not had the financial means to purchase renfrew since it arrived.. I’d love to win this, as I have a mountain of knits that beckins it into my collection.

  4. alexa
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    I’ve really been wanting to try the renfrew pattern since everyone is raving about it. It looks wonderful.

  5. Posted January 14, 2013 at 7:50 am | Permalink

    The Renfrew does look like the kind of pattern that you’d make over and over again. A great wardrobe staple.

  6. Posted January 14, 2013 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    I’d love to win the Renfrew tee pattern! I’m working on developing a TNT because I wear tee’s so often. I’ve read reviews on Pattern Review and it really is drafted well. Thanks for the chance!

  7. Esmeralda
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    I’ve been longing for a Renfrew pattern but my old (old) machine didn’t like to zig zag stitch very well so I avoided patterns that called for stretchy fabrics. This Christmas, however, I became the proud owner of a Singer Sew Mate and quickly loaded up on all sorts of good stretchy knits so now I’m ready to tackle the Renfrew!!

  8. Kelly
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    I’d love to try this pattern!

  9. Elise
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    Wow, what a beautiful tee! I would totally wear that all the time :) Hope I win :) And thank you so much for doing all these tutorials-they’re all fantastic!

  10. Erin
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 9:18 am | Permalink

    I have been considering the Renfew for a while… I’m just still a newbie and overwhelmed by the idea of sewing knits.

    • Posted January 14, 2013 at 9:19 am | Permalink

      The Renfrew really is a great place to start!

  11. Posted January 14, 2013 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    This looks like an awesome pattern! I love the cowl option!

  12. Amanda
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 10:43 am | Permalink

    Thanks so much for the tutorials and the chance to win, I’d love to have the Renfrew pattern! The cowl option is definitely my favorite.

  13. Susanne
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    Hey Miriam,

    as always great sewing and I would love to win a pattern, too :-)

    By the way: I just had the new ottobre design issue in the mail today. (I suppose your issue is on its way, too – probably takes a few days longer to get from Finland to the US than to good old Germany) As usual quite a few pieces I would like to try. There is a T-Shirt-Style Tunic that would probably look great on your big girl (Nr. 28) – I already see mine sporting that one to “kindergarden” and I spontanously fell in love with the Nr. 14 + 15.

    Have a great evening. Mine already started – clingy, feverish toddler is in bed finally…
    Greets, Susanne

    • Posted January 14, 2013 at 11:20 am | Permalink

      Susanne, I wanna hang out with you. Next time I’m in Germany let’s get together;) Oh man, I can’t wait for the Ottobre issue, that was a tantalizing little preview! Yay!!
      Hope you’re little toddler starts feeling better, we were all sick last week, so I can completely sympathize!

  14. Posted January 14, 2013 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    The Renfrew looks like a great pattern…I’ve liked all the versions I’ve seen sewn up in the Sewaholic Flickr pool.:)

  15. Crystal
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Looks great! I’ve been eyeing that pattern myself

  16. Lorraine
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    I have been looking at this one and would love to try it!

  17. Jessie
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    I’ve had my eye on that pattern for ages, this might be the impetus I needed to grab one!

  18. HollySharp
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    Oh man, I would love to have this pattern! I’m bad about only sewing for my daughter, so I need a simple but exciting place to start for me!

  19. Meg
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    This pattern looks great. Would love a chance to win. This series is AWESOME!

  20. Deana
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been learning to sew knits lately; I’d love to try out the Renfrew!

  21. marseille
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    i’d love to win this pattern!

  22. Kaydee
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

    Such great fabric choices for your shirts! I’m totally in love! :)

  23. Katy
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

    I’ve had my eye on the Renfew pattern for a while now. Thanks for the opportunity to give it a go!

  24. Posted January 14, 2013 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

    The Renfrew is top of my ‘patterns to buy’ list!
    This series has been really great, there’s so many things I want to try making now!

  25. Ness
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been eying the Renfrew for sometime now; I think I’ll scoop it up regardless of whether I win!

  26. Posted January 14, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    What a great t-shirt! I can imagine making it in many colors too. :) I would love that pattern!

  27. Kate
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

    Am really enjoying this series, and would love to give the Renfrew a try!

  28. Posted January 14, 2013 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

    Would love to own this pattern! It looks like the perfect basic tee pattern.

  29. Posted January 14, 2013 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

    I would love a basic t!

  30. Posted January 14, 2013 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

    This is so cute, I love the fabric. Thanks for the chance at the giveaway!

  31. Posted January 15, 2013 at 3:04 am | Permalink

    What a great fit that tee is on you! I would love to give it a try – thanks for the giveaway :)

  32. JGarcia
    Posted January 15, 2013 at 4:12 am | Permalink

    I would love to win this pattern!

  33. Posted January 15, 2013 at 6:12 am | Permalink

    That’s a very pretty tshirt. The fabric looks like Liberty. Re the Renfrew giveaway, I’ve never used one of Tasia’s patterns so it would be awesome to have a go. Thanks for setting this up.

  34. sizzle04
    Posted January 15, 2013 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

    I love Sewaholic Patterns, they are so well done and fit me just right. I hope I win this one!

  35. Posted January 16, 2013 at 1:11 am | Permalink

    oh it’s so cute on you! i’ve seen so many awesome versions of the renfrew – i NEED it. fingers crossed and thanks for the giveaway!

  36. Posted January 17, 2013 at 1:12 am | Permalink

    I´d love to win this pattern!!! I love your series about knit fabric, I found your blog when I was reading Novita´s tutorial.
    Thanks for all these helpfull posts!!!

  37. emily
    Posted January 17, 2013 at 3:59 am | Permalink

    Love this pattern. Would be a great introduction to sewing knits.

  38. eva
    Posted January 17, 2013 at 11:40 am | Permalink

    I have this pattern in my pool to buy patterns.
    It will be a great opportunity to sew it!
    thanks for this giveaway

  39. Posted January 17, 2013 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    I’d love to make this shirt!

  40. fenna
    Posted January 17, 2013 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    Would love to give the renfrew a try!

  41. Emma
    Posted January 17, 2013 at 8:29 pm | Permalink

    I’ve heard so much about the Renfrew pattern, and love all that I’ve seen of it! Love the variations, especially – would love to try the cowl neck one!

  42. Megan D
    Posted January 18, 2013 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    I’ve wanting this pattern for awhile!

  43. Posted January 18, 2013 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

    I would love to try this pattern, I have seen so many cute versions.

  44. Posted January 18, 2013 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

    This pattern is definitely on my radar/wishlist. Thanks for the giveaway.

  45. Christina
    Posted January 19, 2013 at 1:41 am | Permalink

    Wow, I love how your renfrew top turned out. Lovely print, kind of fresh and retro at the same time. I just sewed my first t-shirt with a scooped neck last week and I did have troubles with the neckband and I thought the pattern should have had more markings to make it easier to sew. So if the renfrew has some and is as versatile as you say, I better hope I win the pattern :) Thanks for this great series on knits, by the way.

    All the best,

  46. Julie
    Posted January 19, 2013 at 8:00 pm | Permalink

    I’d love to win. This shirt is so great!!

  47. Brittany Dunlap
    Posted January 19, 2013 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

    Basic tees are my favorite clothing item!

  48. Hayley
    Posted January 20, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    Somehow I still haven’t bought this pattern. Why?!

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