Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Another Linen Top

I'm slogging slowly forward on this Mini-Wardrobe Challenge over at, and was all set to finally make something from some gorgeous stretch rayon in my stash. Until I realized that there was just enough -- maybe -- of the turquoise linen left over from making MWC garment #1 to make a simple tank top.

Inspiration credit goes to this top, with which I am much enamored, although I'm past the age where spaghetti straps in public are a good idea. Isn't that ruffled hem adorable?

Unfortunately, the Japanese pattern book it's made from is not among those on my shelf, and I don't have time to order a copy of it. Plus, I'm supposed to be making this challenge from stash, fabric and patterns.

Once bitten by this image, making a linen tank for my second MWC top seemed essential. Plus, it would use up that fabric. Which is a lot more appealing to me this week than putting a scant yard-ish size piece back in the stash. This is supposed to be the year of sewing from stash (and finishing UFOs, not that I'm doing spectacularly in either department, yet, but it's only April, I've got time). Plus, a sleeveless tank would be a nice counterpart to the long-sleeved Patricia tunic, and maybe even fit into a THEME for the challenge, which has so far been lacking. (More on theme later.)

I rummaged through the pattern stash, which yielded a couple of items that could be easliy altered into sleeveless tank-ish tops, but alas, not from the limited piece of fabric I had left. So I self-drafted one, very loosely based on a linen pull-on (no buttons or zip, yay) JJill top that fits well through the bust thanks to armscye darts.

So I copied that, sort of, adding to the length (aiming for lower hip area) and whipped up a quick muslin. Yikes. Okay on the top part, but wow, did I underestimate what would go around my hips with any kind of ease. So now it's more trapeze-ish in shape.

Then I trimmed the neck (very slightly gathered at center front) and arm edges with bias strips cut from the Anna Maria Horner "Guest of Honor" fabric left over from making my office curtains. So far so good. On to the ruffle. Which turned out not to be such a good idea. The cotton print is huge scale, and I planned a deeper ruffle to show just a bit more of it. But a gathered length of wider cotton, even quilting weight, was too heavy for the very lightweight linen. (Took a pic, but it was a dud.) So I cut the ruffle off drafted a straight lower border and went with that. Super-narrow double-turned hem, top-stitched at the seam.

It's okay, but not quite as super-delicious spectacular as I'd hoped. Which is about normal for my semi-experimental sewing. I'm happy with the fabric combo, though, and although there is still a yard-ish size length of the GofH fabric back in the stash, it was fun to use some of it for a garment purpose. Probably I'll make a simple skirt from the rest, but no tackling that until I've completed (or given up on completing) this mini-wardobe thing.

Finishing the white denim skirt is next. It's been hanging in the sewing room closet for a week, waiting for me to give it a waistband and a hem...

I'll post photos of me wearing this stuff when I have complete outfits to show off. Which will be sometime within the week if I'm going to make the challenge deadline.

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