I made myself a new top this week. I have been having a block about sewing anything for a while. But I finally decided I really wanted this top so I forced myself to do it. I saw this top a few years ago. It reminded me of tops we wore back in the 60's and 70's/ I filed the picture away and thought I would make it some day. Well a few weeks ago I decided to make it and what do you know, I could not find the picture. I looked everywhere and could not find a picture like it anywhere. Finally I found it and decided that now was the time to make it. So I sat down and figured out how to do it. The funny thing is, after I finished my top, two of my hippiesew friends found patterns for the same top. Oh well. It was fun figuring it all out myself.
I used 45 inch wide material. This I measured the length I wanted my top to be. I like them long so I cut the fabric 30 inches. You need two pieces that length. Lay one piece on top of the other so the folded pieces are on the same side. On the side that is not folded cut a half U shape out of the top corner. It should look like this.
The half U is about 3 to 4 inches across the top and about 8 inches long. (This should probably be only about 4 inches long. The way it is my bra shows a bit.) This makes the armholes for the top. You can certainly vary this depending on how you want it to fit.
Measure across your chest armpit to armpit. I ended up making this about 2 inches smaller because it made the neckline too open for my tastes. Cut a piece of two or three inch wide lace to this measurement. Then gather the top edge of the fabric on to this lace.
Do the same for the back.
At this point I finished off the armholes with double fold bias tape. This part does not show at all so you could serge it or hem with a narrow hem. THen I sewed the front and back together at the side seams. Your top should now look like this.
Next I cut the "wings" in a large rectangle. I cut two pieces about 14 inches by 36 inches. I hemmed the 14 inch sides with a narrow hem. Then I folded the long edge to the outside and sewed the lace down on the top and bottom.
Lay the wings on top of the top so the lace of the wings is directly on top of the lace from the front.
Stitch the wing down in a square just where the lace from the wing covers the lace from the top.
I just made a square but I remembered that back in the day we made a square with an X in the middle like the above picture.
Do the same for the back and the other end of the wing. Then repeat the process for the other side.
Hem the bottom and you are done.
I hope this explains the process. I've never written a tutorial before. Feel free to ask any questions you might have. Measurements can easily be changed. They are subject to the size of the person you are making it for. I made it very full because I don't like tight fitting clothes. The bottom is almost 90 inches around. I love my new top and can't wait to make another.
I am a stay at home homeschooling mom using Time4Learning.com with my eight year old son for online curriculum. I try to be as green as possible. Doing my part to help save the planet one stitch at a time.