Category Archives: Tops

Red Top, White Top, Tropical Top, Grey Top…..but … fish

I purchase two pairs of Rollie’ lace up’ shoes to take on a vacation to the USA,  Mexico and Cuba.  I was inspired from the feet up  to create a new capsule using the shoe colour :  white  and  grey as the neutrals.   I needed a colour  and  decided on RED,   although it was difficult to source,  I found some nice spots and a fun tropical print for T-shirts.

Participating in the SWAPs and 6PACS at Artisan Square has changed the way I sew.  I have adapted to sewing and thinking in terms of a collection  and  spending  more time in the planning  phase of creating a ‘family’ of clothes.   I have boiled down my pattern selection,  limited my colours and  concentrated on  basics  that I hope will mix and match to create a co-ordinated and workable travel wardrobe.   So,  it will be darks for bottoms and lights for tops .


I will be holidaying in hot humid weather,  which I love,  first up I made a few T’s using my TNT Burda pattern.  Super quick with an overlocker and twin needle to finish the hems.

Next up a few tops…..I need something to go over swimmers and under a jacket for a dressier occasion.  As well,   I will be attending Louise Cutting’s sewing retreat at Florida and felt the need to make and wear a few of her patterns.  Both the white linen tops from ‘My Hearts A’Flutter’ pattern and the oversized navy silk from ‘Anything But Ordinary’pattern made one size larger without the sleeves.

Now….I have 4xTs,  a swim coverup and 2x dressier tops.  Almost dressed…..

Happy Sewing



Top it OFF


I wanted to make some new “going out pants” for the trip so that I could   mix +match with pretty  tops.  These Burda Style pants from 2/2014  with their panelled fronts caught my attention  and I decided  to make them from heavy navy blue satin, using  both the shiny and dull side of the fabric.  I cut and made a size 44 ,   adding a little to the waist  The pants went together perfectly and were a pretty quick sew,   but now I needed some matching tops.

I became inspired when watching this Fit 2 Stitch video to make a few basic Tanks from Burda 7075. I like the idea of working to get a perfect basic pattern.  Tanks are great for wearing under jackets and I love jackets!

I pretty much followed  Peggy Sager’s procedure for fitting  her model.  I made the first tank without any alterations.    With the second I changed the angle of the dart  to a french dart.   The third was conceived  because of a trip to SPOTLIGHT  where I came across pleather.  I just had to purchase four colours to make the coloured blocked version.  I often think about making a travel wardrobe in red white and blue.     Before we left  DH took a few photos.


First Tank,  made from a stiff navy silk.  Maybe a little bit small and could be made more flattering by angling the darts. The fabric has a beautiful silk sheen and a deep  inky look.  I have a little more of it and can picture it as a crisp shirt,  with a pointy collar and lots topstitching.

silk geometric print tank

silk geometric print tank

Second tank from a polyester…which I purchased because I thought it was silk  and loved the colours.  The geometric pattern  was distorted when printed which made  it  a bear to cut out.  The straight line are really curved!  I changed the angle of the darts and feel that it is more flattering overall and I getting closer to TNT.    Although yellow and orange are not my  colours the geometrical pattern and other cool colours are…. and I think I can get away with it.  This little top is fun and I love it’s 60’s vibe….  wish I had some large plastic earrings.

Pleather geometrical tank.

Pleather geometrical tank.


Tank 3 in pleather.  The sales assistance mentioned  to use tissue paper between the pleather and the needle TWICE.   While the white, blue and red were difficult to sew the black was a nightmare and I decided to use the navy as my main colour because of this. The black was clammy and kept sticking on the feed dogs,  causing the machine to miss stitches …. and creating irregular size stitches.

I used Peggy’s method of dividing up the front…..making the vertical cut first.   Then cutting each section into the smaller areas.    A  very stretchy navy woven was used for the back which makes putting it on easy.  This top is a little warm to wear;   it is plastic after all,  but  great for those air-conditioned restaurants and cooler nights.

So what made it into my suit case???   The pleather coloured blocked top!!!

Simplify Your Life…..

Just completed ‘Simplify Your Life’ the new pattern from Cutting Line Designs that arrived in the mail on Friday.  I cut between the medium and large lines and choose this ‘stiff’ navy thread dyed shirting for my fist one.  This is a piece of fabric that I really like,  it is superfine cotton that is interesting on both sides.  I did contemplated combing both sides but felt it was a little dramatic and may look too ‘crafty’.  While I love the fabric I feel like I am in a ‘doctors’ or ‘nurses’ uniform and that  it is a little masculine.    I have it cut out in a tomato red peach skin silk that I am sure I will want to wear.  I made this when I felt a little under the weather and when overlocking the sleeves  I somehow caught a part of the sleeve band and had to replace it.  The pants are My Swing Set made from a micro fibre.

‘Simplify Your Life ‘ contains 2 tops, the other has a high round neckline  (jewel) and buttons from the shoulder down the sleeve,  pretty sure I will not be making it as high necklines are not my best look.  As always the instructions are great,  being very detailed, well illustrate and with helpful hints.  It is easy to create beautifully  clothes with Louise Cutting.