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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Bow Top Tutorial with Emily of Replicate Then Deviate

I love today's project, and today's guest blogger. Emily from Replicate Then Deviate is about the sweetest blogger out there.  She always takes the time to comment, and is a trooper about participating in sew alongs and challenges.  I'm lucky enough to get to bump in Emily now and again around town, as we live in the same city.  I was thrilled when I ran into her last month at Joann's, too bad it was at the exact moment I was yelling for Clark to quit hiding from me...she pretended not to notice though.

Today she's sharing a sweet bow top tutorial.  I want this shirt for me. 

Hello! I'm Emily and I blog at Replicate then Deviate. I'm super excited to be participating in Top-tober Fest. What a fun series! I'm a big fan of Tricia's blog and even got to meet her. She is fantastic!

I made this bow top for Ansley. I used a really soft jersey knit (leftover from these leggings) and used an existing shirt (that I thought was a bigger fit on her- she's totally in a growth spurt right now)to pattern the body of the shirt. I lengthened the sleeves (the "pattern" shirt was short sleeved) and eliminated the puffs at the shoulder. I also cut a lower wide/soft v neck (more v shaped than curved but doesn't ever come to a point). I also tried out some knit stay tape (purchased from this shop) on the bottom hemline (after reading about it here) and am really happy with how the bottom hem turned out not stretched out at all and with no skipped stitches or anything crazy. :) The hardest part was ironing it on the curly knit. :) Anyway, I started with my top like this (note the neckline is not finished yet):

(not pictured- I cut a strip of fabric 3.5 inches wide times the length of the fabric (about 58 inches. I clipped (with my wonder clips, not scissors) the strip together hot dog style right sides together and sewed down one end and the length of the strip with a narrow width zigzag stitch. Clipped (with scissors) corners and seam allowance to about 1/8 inch. Turned right side out. Ironed. Folded raw edges in a sewed close to the edge.) I clipped the center of the long tube with the sewn edge lined up with the raw edge of the center of the back neckline on the outside of the shirt. Continue clipping or pinning until almost the center (but leave a small gap for the half square knot that goes under the bow (about an inch or two). Sew with a narrow width zigzag stitch.

(not pictured- press the long strip up with seam allowances facing down (towards the bottom of the shirt) Topstitch all the way around the shirt. When you get to the front gap between the long ties, fold the shirt fabric down the so you can topstitch that raw edge down (probably not the correct term) when you're top stitching all the way around the neck opening of the shirt.

Tie the bow and you're done! I'm still thinking about whether or not I should tack the bow down. Ansley loves trying to tie it but some days I just don't want to re-tie it a bunch of times.

After finishing Ansley's and not having enough pink knit leftover for myself, I wondered what this top would look like in a non knit. I was thinking about something lightweight and had a bolt of chiffon that I bought before Joann's moved to my side of town. Tricia posted her Easy as Pie Tank with some great tips for chiffon but I still had a crazy time getting everything to line up properly and not be wavy. I wished I had remembered about this post with more chiffon tips b/c they would've helped. ha. Anyway I used the Colette Sorbetto Top pattern (minus the pleat, which they have a tutorial for but I forgot about it until now when I googled for the pattern link), with a lengthened sleeve based on this sleeve pattern. The side seams and the top seam are french seams (wahoo) and I tried really hard to get a decent bottom hem but it's totally wavy after unpicking it like five times, finding that this method finally worked. I also probably should've ironed the fabric but I was really scared of melting it. Thank goodness the chiffon is so flowy, it kind of hides some of the flaws. I really didn't like it when I was making it and nearly gave up several times. This one is wearable and looks pretty cute in pictures and I almost want to make another but not for a while. :)

I tried three times to get an even strip of fabric for the tie. (hint- don't fold the chiffon in quarters to save time unless you want a really wavy "rectangle"). I finally just eyeballed a tiny discoloration in the fabric and ended up with a strip about 4.5 inches wide by about 58 inches (width of fabric). I do kind of wish the tie was longer but I was done fighting with the chiffon. If I make another shirt with knit or a lightweight cotton I will probably double the length (sew two pieces of width of fabric strips together). After sewing it on the shirt, I didn't like how it stuck out like a reverse collar (like this) so I folded it down (folding the collar part approximately in half) and sewed it down from about 3 inches behind the top of shoulder seam on both sides of the shirt (ie sewn only in the back, starting in the back). You could also try bunching it in the center like this top.

Thank you again for having me Tricia!!

Thanks again Emily.  Be sure to stop by her blog, Replicate Then Deviate, and if you like her project let her know.  Comments are always welcome on this blog.


Simple Simon and Company said...

Absolutely darling Emily!!!

Emily said...

Thanks for having me!!! :)

Unknown said...

Ahhh OMG that is so funny Tricia! I worry about running into Portland bloggers around town when my critters are acting up too! And that's all the time ;-)
And YEAY for Emily!!! I absolutely concur that she is one of the nicest bloggers! She is one of my online besties, lol. Such a cute little tutorial, and very useful!! Way to be awesome Emily!!

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Usually I never comment on blogs but your article is so convincing that I never stop myself to say something about it. You’re doing a great job Man,Keep it up.
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