I’ve been churning out tops recently. I had a lack of ‘summer separates’ so I decided to take action – amazing! Practical sewing by me!
To start off the sewing binge, I made Simplicity 1589 – a ‘learn to sew’ pattern.
I had always been drawn to the peekaboo and lapped backs of this pattern – so when a pattern sale came along, I decided to buy it. I don’t particularly mind whether a pattern is advanced or easy – if it works, it works. I also love that this pattern is a fabric miser.
I made this with less than a metre of fabric – left over from my first Grainline Alder (Jillian of Sew Unravelled… you were so right about not making a belt for the Alder – the fabric was perfect for a top). It’s a woven rayon – I love rayon, it straddles the divide of man-made and natural fibres. It’s perfect for my climate.
View A, which I have made here, takes just 90cm of 150cm wide fabric (or 1 yard at 60 inches wide) so it’s an absolute stash buster. View B takes slightly more 1.3m of 150cm wide fabric (or 1 3/8 yard at 60 inches wide).
These are easy, easy tops to make. If you are looking for a nice woven top pattern with a difference – then this might be an option. I also suspect it is a great option for fabric busting all those smaller pieces from bigger projects.
The armholes and neckline are finished with bias binding. I confess I do struggle to get my bias binding as neat as I would like – but it’s a challenge I’ll continue to embrace.
There are no bust darts. I suspect some may find the fabric in this top falls like a waterfall… I wouldn’t know and I don’t speak for FBA department of the sewing community – but if you have knowledge/advice to share, please comment below for others. What I can say is that it works for me. The side panels and back also cover up most bra straps which is a nice feature.
Due to the lack of bust darts I personally think a fabric with some drape will work best – otherwise it may be a little tentlike.
I made a size 4 – this top has A LOT of ease. About 5 inches of ease at the bust – which I just think is too much, even for a loose fitting top. If I had made this according to the sizing chart, I would have made size 8 – which would have been two more inches of ease than this one on me. I like the fit of this. The armholes are comfortable and the back sits nicely.
If you get stuck with what size to make, check the finished bust measurements at the bottom of the envelope back – put a tape measure around you and figure out how much ease seems reasonable. I do this with almost every make. This top isn’t meant to be tight or close fitting but I don’t think you need to swim in fabric either.
I also think this would be a nice pattern for teenagers. It is loose but has cute details that I think would appeal to many young girls I know. My daughters are too slight for this pattern at the moment although I think many of their friends would love it.
I absolutely struggled with my stitching with this make… the tension was all over the place and I could not for the life of me figure out why. It was funny that it happened on this make as it was supposed to be ‘easy’! As it turned out, a drunk monkey (or a small daughter) had fiddled with my machine tension at some point – it didn’t occur to me to check the tension dial because I hadn’t touched it. I thought it was a bobbin case screw issue which has happened once before. Oh well. At least I know not to make the assumption that no one else touches my machines 🙂
Once I found the source of my stitching woes, I unpicked the topstitching at the armholes and neckline then restitched the topstitching. It was too late for the back neck and side panels… thankfully the tension issues only shows on the inside – and it’s not that bad (suck it up Princess Lizzy).
I briefly considered throwing this out or not blogging it for a bunch of reasons… but it’s escaped the charity bag and made it to the blog.
To hell with imperfection.
Pattern: Simplicity 1589
Fabric: Rayon from Spotlight. I picked some more up at the 40% sale the other day to make a little dress for my youngest daughter.
Skirt: Target – I found this in the kids sale section for $10. It’s a bit ‘out there’ but I love it – I have a weakness for anything denim, especially skirts. It looks fab dressed up with a white shirt and heels. Plus I think it would be fun to copy the spray paint concept on a future make.