Summer time, summer time. It’s time to get that summer time wardrobe in check. I was looking for something breezy and cute to pair with jeans or shorts, but I didn’t want the typical tank top or T-shirt. I perused through my stash of patterns and came across this…Kwik Sew 4160 is a flattering top designed for knits. Options include sleeveless or long sleeves, collar or no collar, and it has a very feminine gather design at high waist to give it a bit of flare and fit without being constricting. I knew I had some thin flowy jersey fabric in my stash too so it’s a win-win!
Sew … Here we go!
If you have been reading my blog you know the drill by now. Prewash your fabric. Use tools that make your life easier such as pattern weights and a rotary cutter. Change the needle in your sewing machine for each new project. Keep your machine clean especially around the bobbin. Enough of me getting on my soap box… let’s get to cutting the pieces out and reading through the directions so we have a plan of attack. Seam allowances are 5/8″ on this pattern. Mark all your notches and don’t forget to mark the center sewing guides for the elastic.
I chose to make view A; a sleeveless no collar beauty for summer. Since I’m using a slinky thin jersey, the fusible interfacing is also a Pellon thin knit interfacing for my neck facings. I also have some super cool fusible bias stay tape to hold the neckline, shoulders, and armscyes in place, AND my ultimate favorite thing of all for knits is WONDER TAPE! Yes… wonder tape is magic two sided sticky tape that washes away in the laundry!!! I’ll show you how to use it when we do the hem.
Stay Tape… yes it too is magic. Well, I think it is. Stay tape is thin fusible bias tape that you iron to the seam line to keep your fabric from stretching out of shape. I use it on necklines, armscyes, and shoulder seams. Many brands are out there so try them out.
Fuse the interfacing to the neck facings. Once that’s done, sew the facings together at the shoulder seams and press. Finish the raw edges of the facing. I used an overlock stitch on mine. Use a zigzag or other type of stitch if you want. Sew the shoulder seams of the main bodice and press.
Lay the facing on the bodice with right sides together and sew the neck all the way around. Clip your curves. Understitch the facing. Understitching is when you sew the seam allowance down on the facing close to the seam to keep the facing from “rolling” out. If you do this you will be amazed at how nice and neat it makes your neck line. Now, since this is my blog and my project, I get to make adjustments along the way to include this one: After I understitched and turned my neck facing inside the garment and then gave it a good press, I decided I wanted to so a little top stitching to give it a bit more stability to hold the neck facing in place.
Cut a piece of 1/4″ elastic the size of the pattern guide (about 4 1/2″ long). Now this is where I had to scratch my head a bit to figure out how in the world this small piece of elastic was going to stretch the length of my center markings.
No matter how hard I tried, it would not stretch the length needed. SEW…I improvised and made a gather stitch along the center markings and gathered just enough to where if I stretched out that little piece of elastic it would make it end to end. You don’t want to gather the entire bit with thread because you need a little stretch when you pull the top over your head and onto your body. Now…you are going to sew the elastic in place on the WRONG SIDE OF FABRIC by S-T-R-E-T-C-H-I-N-G it as you sew it in place.
Take the front tab piece, fold it in half with right sides together and sew the long side 5/8″ seam leaving about 1″ in the center unsewn, so you can turn it right side out. Now, fold the tab so the seam runs down the middle, sew the sides, turn right side out and slip stitch the remaining open seam. Place the tab on the right side of the bodice matching the markings and sew each end in place. Do not sew the long sides as this will inhibit the elastic from stretching.
Sew the side seams and press. Finish the seams as you like. I suggest an overlock stitch if your fabric ravels.
For the armscyes, I used a single fold bias tape. On the right side of the fabric, I placed the edge of the tape and attached it using a 1/4″ seam.
Then I turned the bias to the inside and gave it a good press. Topstitch your bias tape in place.
Are you ready for a little MAGIC? Wonder tape! On my hem, I pressed my desired hem allowance of 5/8″. I then applied wonder tape to the edge of the hem, peeled off the double sided paper and finger pressed the hem in place. This will hold it until you wash it. It gives is stability to sew and won’t gum up your needle. Now tell me that isn’t amazing. Before I found this little gem I would dread working with stretchy, slippery fabric. But now, it’s easy breezy.
That’s it on this make. I love my summer top and it was a delight to make. I hope yours comes out marvelous too!