Chronic illness and perpetually scrambling to keep up with commissions kept this project on the shelf for two years. As I rebuild my strength, I've been tackling the 'small' projects, and finally took this fabric off to try and do something with it.
I actually don't mind that I had time to think about the design. When I originally bought this fabric on sale at fabric.com, I was envisioning it as a comfy knit dress. However, like most white base fabrics, it was too thin for this to become a reality. I then played around with making a skirt out of it... but I kept seeing poofy sleeves. And that meant I needed to make a top with it.
Because the fabric is so thin, I knew that I was going to have to layer this top. Due to my fibromyalgia, layers and long sleeves can get uncomfortable/constricting. Since this design was going to have both elements, I needed to come up with a versatile solution. I decided to construct it as a wrap top that could function either as a removable shrug OR a blouse.
I draped the pattern on my dress form. No darts, just some gathers along the front shoulder edges.
This fabric was a little fussy to work with, so I had to proceed delicately.
I chose to finish off the collar and front edges with a band of fabric, rather than a hem. This worked well, as it would likely have stretched out in an unsightly manner had I gone with a hem here.
At this point I was thinking along the lines of keeping it a shrug, but I didn't like how unflattering the silhouette was. I started considering the different ways to turn it into a secured wrap without losing the shrug option.
I barely had enough fabric to eek out the sleeves. I actually added a 2 inch strip of scrap fabric into the inner seam to ensure that I got the volume I wanted in the sleeve.
The first cuff size was a little too big, so I tightened it up a bit.
After attaching the sleeves and trying the top on, I was not happy with all of the volume in the back. So I decided to create a shirred panel, with rows of gathering and securing stitches.
Very, VERY happy with how it turned out!
This print is a tad on the busy side for me, but the top is really comfortable and turned out more flattering than I was anticipating. I definitely want to replicate this style in the future!