Thursday, August 25, 2016

New Look 6374 top in striped silk

This year I have resolved to sew some different shapes and types of garments, with mixed success. I suppose the reason we (at least I) stick to the same things is that is what is comfortable, familiar, or even perceived to be flattering. Previously I have not sewn many woven tops - I do have a number of button front shirts but other than that all my tops are knits. However now that I took the plunge with this great result I predict more variations on this theme in the future.

So the latest foray into silk tops is this. Which I absolutely love. And labored over - due to the unusual fabric. Although it might not appear unusual as a finished top.

green silk top sq2

Here's a look on the dress form. This fabric is a silk, crepe de chine, I guess.  Which I got in the upstairs discount room at Stone Mountain. They have so many treasures to be discovered there, I rarely come home without something I find in that room. Which has even more fabric now as they have discontinued classes - so they have more space for fabric.

green silk stripe front view

What came first, the new pattern or the new fabric?  Actually I bought this fabric maybe 2 months ago? and keep thinking about what to do with it. It definitely presented a challenge because it is actually a border print, or I think you might describe it as an asymmetrical stripe panel print.

Anyway I did remember to take a photo of the fabric before I cut out the top. It was about 42 inches wide with the lighter section separating the black/green stripe sections. I think the yardage they had on the bolt was not cut along the panel so they cut me this portion which gave me some extra of the light portion you see at the top. The main top pattern pieces are there on the table so you can see how I used the stripe and dark/light section.

green stripe fabric

The uninspiring pattern envelope. My opinion, adding those bits of blue lace on the one in the photo takes it straight to frump town although the color is not my fav plus those elbow length rolled up sleeves rarely look good on anyone.  So why did I buy this pattern?  Well after my success with my previous New Look top (another version here) I noticed this one which has a nice small placket with a slight angle to open up the neckline, plus it has the shoulder gathers instead of bust darts, so good for stripes. Also the shirttail hem although basically you can add that to any pattern. I think the collar is a bit on the skimpy side and for a winter version I might add some width to it. OK for a lightweight top but it is really neither here nor there, not a binding and not really a collar. Odd. In fact I just made another version of this top where I opened up the neckline and made a round band which sounds complicated but is not really  - and I will try to show in another post. Because pattern reuse - I am all about that once I get a good one.

NL_6374 pattern evn

So how did I use the various bits of the fabric? First I cut out the body pieces matching the stripes for the front and back. Then I cut out the front shoulder pieces and the back yoke from the light portion of the fabric, also the collar from little scraps remaining, taking care to reserve as much of the light portion for the sleeves. Figuring I could also cut out the placket pieces from the remaining fabric. I thought about making the placket from the mostly black section although I wasn't sure that would look quite right. In any case once I was ready to cut the placket all that remained was the stripe section so DRAT! I had to cut it out very exactly to match the stripe across the placket and front. Which was a little bit of a pain but now I am so satisfied with how it turned out. Woo Hoo! Good thing I had all my recent placket practice, haha.

green silk stripe close up

A little construction view for those of you who like to see the insides. I used the Pro-Sheer Elegance Couture  interfacing for the placket pieces and the collar as well. They (Fashion Sewing Supply) just have the best interfacings and if I could only have one type on some imaginary desert island of sewing I would take all the Pro-Sheer Elegances in every weight and color. Which might be cheating as that is picking more than one but it is my self-imagined desert island of sewing. With unlimited deliveries of snacks from Trader Joe's and wi-fi for my podcast sewing accompaniment.

green stripe placket sewing

More views.

green stripe side view

green stripe silk back view

Sorry about the focus on this one - all the back views are slightly blurry but you get the idea. The back is about 4 inches longer than the front. Like I said, slightly new silhouette for me and in this fabric I think it works well.

green silk top back view on me

Quite breezy when these pics were taken, but you get the idea of how floaty and lovely this fabric feels to wear.

silk top side view on me

So another try at a new shape and I'm quite happy I did. I can see using this pattern for other types of tops, a long sleeve for sure for winter. And maybe even a drawstring waist. I'll have to see what strikes my fabric fancy in the next few months. Until then it is still summer here !!!! I hope. Although you can notice the evenings getting darker just that little bit earlier each week - boo I don't like that.

By the way, a little plug for Stone Mountain Fabrics - I saw they had this fabric in the store again, both in this color and in red/navy. I seriously love that fabric, it is an RPL knit I guess but the weight and colors are exceptional. Also I have bought two color ways of this fabric which is super soft and lovely.

Next up - more striped things. Including a dress that I showed on Instagram with my lukewarm reaction - and judging by the comments it might be better than I thought. Though still not my color! Stay tuned...

Happy late summer Sewing, Beth

today's garden photo - I found this on my camera roll from back in April, a yellow iris covered in raindrops. Sometimes these iPhone photos amaze me.



  1. This turned out beautifully Beth. Great use of the fabric and I hope to get to this pattern soon.

  2. You did a GREAT job mixing this fabric & pattern. I LOVE it & you look lovely!

  3. Another great top. I am liking this use of woven fabrics, inspiring and I might just have to get this pattern myself.

    1. Oh and your photo is lovely too. Sewing and flowers, my top favourites.

  4. The fabric was a great choice and makes a beautiful top! I'm glad you like it and that its great to wear!

  5. Lovely! That fabric is killer!

  6. I've always been a fan of border prints & this one is such a great one & a fab top

  7. Great top! I love your precision on those stripes! The iris is a beautiful picture...thinking back on all the pictures I took in high school with my cheap-o camera and all the money I spent mailing off the film to be printed, it makes the iPhone photos even MORE amazing!! Technological advances are awesome, and since they're so abundant, I'm confident that we'll all have Wi-Fi on our remote islands! :-)

  8. It is a beautiful top. The fabric is lovely.

  9. Gee, this is certainly a great pairing of pattern and fabric design. Each shows the nice attributes of the other. Really nice skill and execution, Beth.

  10. I might just come and steal this right out of your closet! It is SO CUTE and I adore how you laid the fabric out. A black placket might have been too focus pulling IMO and I think the striped one just perfect. I have made several things over the years with plackets and they never turn out for me so kudos to you for doing it so well. Those things aren't easy!

  11. It's a beautiful and flattering blouse. The fabric is stunning and I would never have imagined this elegant blouse from that pattern illustrations. I like the shorter sleeve.

  12. Beautiful top - well thought it - it really works well in this fabric. I am moving toward this silhouette this summer too. I hope mine works as well as yours has.

  13. Oh, this is so nice! I find woven tops hard to wear as well, unless they're true loose tunics. But you found the best in this pattern. New Look can be surprising - always worth a good look. Your fabric is wonderful and I love how you used it. Bet it was shifty on the cutting table!

  14. The richness of the colors and the drape of the fabric just work so well with your coloring and shape! Using simple patterns for gorgeous fabrics lets the fabrics show so well!

  15. It looks great on you. I'm a bit frightened of silk. It hangs beautifully though so you've inspired me to go it a go.

  16. Unbelievable job on that placket matching! I am often attracted to border prints and then can't figure out how to use them effectively, but you nailed this one.

  17. What a great summer top! And your placement of the border print is perfect. I actually prefer that the collar band was not in the contrast black, i think this way it blends and flows together better. I'm always afraid of border prints because i dont want to end up emphasizing the wrong bits, but when done right like here, any garment is taken one level up. Looking forward to see how else you make and modify this pattern!

  18. Bardzo ciekawy blog :) podziwiam Twoje krawiectwo, piękny top :) Pozdrawiam serdecznie.