February was “sew stripes” month on the Sewcialists blog and Instagram, and I joined in! Although I have never participated in sewing challenges , this is the second Sewcialist challenge I have completed. Although not blogged until now, I finished by deadline.
This was my first time sewing with stripes fabric. When sewing stripes two main aspects come to mind: stripe matching and playing with the grain of fabric, possibly switching up the stripes by using the cross grain or the bias.
I had this small piece of thick and thin striped woven cotton fabric. It was not enough for even a sleeveless top on its own so I paired it with a solid.
I was deliberating between patterns until I came across a free pattern from Peppermint Magazine , the Harvest Top. Perfect!
The pattern has a yoke, body, bottom band, and arm bands making it an easy choice for color blocking as well as stripes. I decided to change the back to keep the buttons only for the yoke, and to cut the body as a single piece.
The layout was a double thickness of the entire striped fabric, laying the front and back body pieces on the lengthwise grain as is customary, and the front and back yoke single layer on the crossgrain. The bottom bands, armbands, and facings were cut from the navy fabric.
Making the top seemed like a lot of work in comparison to the ease of sewing knit tees!! I had to deal with seam finishing, facings, buttonholes, and fitting adjustments. I opted out of sewing a muslin, and instead started with a generous size. The pattern has a lot of ease and I needed to take my basted side seams in considerably. (Well, the pattern is also called “boxy top”). I made the arm opening smaller to avoid the deep, body exposing armholes. I didn’t cut the arm cuffs on the bias as I was using solid fabric and didn’t need the stretch either.
Yep, I stripe matched the shoulder and side seams.
And the back:
And worn by me:
The arm and bottom bands are both doubled so there is no hemming. I’m thinking of a knit fabric version in the future.
I think adding a second solid fabric made the top even better. I have been loving this technique; my last four tops have all used two different fabrics:
Do you have a favorite? Mine is the black and white dotted tee.