You can’t believe how happy it makes me seeing that you’re loving my Very First Pattern for sale… recently, I’ve seen a version that Alison (aka Thimberlina) has sewn starting from a red super soft throw she bought from Ikea.

On my pattern, one of the most fabric consuming parts is the collar, which is cut on bias and doubled… and she discovered that she hadn’t  enough fabric… but she ended with a really clever (and cute!) variation: ruffles!

I asked Alison if she had something to say about this pattern, and she told me:

“What started off as an afternoon of sewing a simple top turned into a weekend of battling with a really tricky fabric. I love the result tho, and I’m looking forward to making the top as per the instructions.  I imagine I’ll have floaty ones for summer and cosy ones for layering as the temperature drops.”

When I’ve seen Beatriz brown version, poncho style and then Magda’s mustard, I was sure I NEEDED a wool version me too!

Then, when Diane @ VintageZest (and Stitch Once, Rip Twice FB group creator) announced that our next Challenge was

Simple Top Challenge

I was sure what I was going to sew for it: a Sheer Plaid Top, well, maybe  more a Wool Plaid Top, this time!

 Serger Pepper Simple Top Challenge: a Wool Plaid Top Colorblock

Just to add some spice, I’ve decided to change the style of the collar and add a nice colorblock feature on front and back. Would you like to know how I did?

 Serger Pepper Simple Top Challenge: a Wool Plaid Top Colorblock

Let’s go!

What you need:

– My Sheer Plaid Top PDF pattern 

– wool fabric (I used 2 m of a 150 cm height)

– 2 buttons (optional, mine are 1,5 cm)

Print the pattern and decide if you prefer printing it twice then taping or if you will draw the other half on some white paper, taped together. This is because the original pattern is cut on fold, but my colorblock design is asymmetrical, so you need to have a full back (=front) pattern piece to alter.

 Serger Pepper Simple Top Challenge: a Wool Plaid Top Colorblock

When you have your full bodice piece, trace a straight line starting from a side seam, (10 cm higher than the bottom hem) and ending on the opposite  shoulder seam. Cut your pattern piece along this line, marking at least one notch along the line on both pattern pieces, to help you putting them together later.

Cut your pattern pieces from two different fabrics or, if you have a woven wool like mine (not a print!), you can cut the two halves one from right side of the fabric, the other from the wrong side: it looks like a sort of positive/negative design to me!

 Serger Pepper Simple Top Challenge: a Wool Plaid Top Colorblock

For the collar, add 2 cm in length and double the height from the original pattern. It’s cut on bias, to add some texture and because I like how it lays.

Check my Pythagora’s trick about how to cut a bias piece, given its measurements here!

Tip: check that your fabric looks good on both sides, sometimes (often), on wrong side you’ll find knots or little defects that were pulled there purposely from the right side…

I chose using french seams between the two pieces, and I topstitched with a honeycomb decorative stitch. I didn’t do that here but it would have been awesome matching the pattern on seam… if only I thought about it!

Complete your top as per instructions, except for the collar.

Fuse a piece of interfacing on one short end, then fold in half lengthwise, right sides facing.

Stitch short sides closed.

 Serger Pepper Simple Top Challenge: a Wool Plaid Top Colorblock

Turn inside out the collar, then press well to flatten it. Mark with chalk the side where your interface is, it’s where you’re goig to sew decorative buttons. Sew (or serge) closed the long opened side.

 Serger Pepper Simple Top Challenge: a Wool Plaid Top Colorblock

Attach it to the neckline, overlapping ends for 2 cm (nearly 1″) on the same shoulder seam you split in two colors. Leave the interfaced side on front side of the bodice.

Add a couple of buttons along the short front sides (remember, the interfacing!)… ta daaaaa!

Do you like this version? Check also what did the testers do here, and here, and here (check SergerPepper’s Flickr group too).

 Serger Pepper Simple Top Challenge: a Wool Plaid Top Colorblock

I have one more new version (it’s on my mind, at the moment, but I hope I’ll be able soon making it real) coming, featuring woven and knit fabrics! Stay tuned and you won’t miss it 😉

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