Made by a Fabricista: Fun with Stripes

Happy September! I’m definitely ready for cooler weather and I am starting my fall sewing with this little striped top in an unusual color combo of black, cream, clay and mint green.  I used this Milly fabric.

I really love working with stripes.  There are so many fun things that you can do.  For example, I decided to put the lower back on the bias, the yoke on the straight grain, and the collar on the cross grain for this top.   Because this is an uneven stripe, it was a little tricky to get this bias chevron effect.  How I did it was this:
1.  Cut my yardage into two pieces.
2.  Lay one piece right side up, single layer.
3.  Turn the other piece 180 degrees and wrong side down, so that the stripes match when you put them together.  Check your stripes all the way across- they can be together at the selvedges, but shift on you in the middle! 
4.  Place the grainline on the pattern piece at a 45 degree angle and pin to your fabric.

 Here’s the back- I love how it moves:

Apparently Milly likes having fun with stripes too- take a look at some of the images I found online of Milly’s designs:

Pretty awesome, right?  I couldn’t find this particular fabric made up into apparel online.  Let me know if you can find it anywhere.  I’d love to see what Milly made with it.

For my pattern, I chose McCall’s 7985- I believe it came out in the summer releases. It’s a Khaliah Ali pattern, and I always love her styles- very dramatic and great for us tall gals.  I did do a slight full bust adjustment- I should have done my regular, but the finished bust measurements on the envelope indicated that it had plenty of ease.  That ease must have all been in the back, as the front ended up a little on the snug side!  The other thing about it was the neckband ended up way too big for my neck.  That might have been the fabric, as it is pretty loosely woven, but I will definitely check that against a neckband that fits before I make it again.   I did not add any length (I’m 5’9″ for reference), and wouldn’t have wanted it any longer.  So, if you are average height or shorter than average, you will need to shorten it.

I had enough fabric to make the longest version, so I went for it.  The high low hemline contrast is quite pronounced, which won’t be everyone’s cup of tea.  But I really enjoy wearing something that’s out of the ordinary, and don’t mind it at all.

I had saved some of my favorite clothes from my youth, in case I ever had daughters that would get a kick out of them, and my all time favorite top when I was a teenager was this one with the mint green, peach and beige stripes.  Surprisingly, none of my daughters found this old, pilly sweatshirt attractive!  But, look how similar the stripes are to my new top-  no wonder I couldn’t resist this fabric!

You can see here that the front and back skirt sections are open at the sides, so you can put your hands in your pockets, and sit down without the skirt pulling down, which is great.  I dyed cording instead of making a fabric drawstring for the waist tie.

After taking these photos, I experimented with taking the drawstring out of the underbust seam, and I think it looks better- less poufy in the front.  I will probably just wear the drawstring inserted through the side openings and around the back, not the front.  It gives less of a ruffle effect and de-emphasizes the bust.  I’m not sure- which way do you think looks best?  Without the drawstring under the bust:

Or with the drawstring under the bust?

The fabric was really lovely to work with, as I’ve come to expect from the Milly fabrics!  I wish that they had it in some different colorways!  How about you?  Do you enjoy working with stripes?  Do you notice that you still like color combinations that were your favorites as a child?

Happy Sewing!

Ann

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *