I have a soft spot for sleeveless 1950's tops. Or to be specific, I have a soft spot for button fronted, notched collared, darted sleeveless tops made from vintage 1950's patterns. Tops like this one…
I made this first version almost exactly two years ago and I love it, even though it's far, far from perfect. I completely lost my way constructing the collar and ended up doing my own thing. It's made from cheap, shoddy gingham which I didn't even attempt to match up. Nothing is interfaced etc etc. I'm getting very critical here (sorry top) but the thing is, none of that matters because I love it to death, it's one of my most worn handmade items and is just so perfectly me it's ridiculous. So when I was going through the remains of my stash (which is reducing at an alarming rate I'm happy to report) and found just under a metre of navy stretch polka dot fabric, I knew exactly how it could be put to good use. I would make another sleeveless top from the same pattern (vintage Simplicity 4238).
The fabric, which is left over from my Ruby dress, is awesome. It's got a slight stretch to it which is perfect for fitted garments as it yanks you in. And because it's medium weight and holds its shape pretty well, I didn't have to bother with interfacing.
I was pretty inexperienced in sewing with vintage patterns when I made my first version so it was good to be able to come back to the pattern with a bit more experience under my belt. Instructions that made no sense whatsoever two years ago, suddenly became crystal clear. I still really like the pattern details too, lots of strategically placed darts (12 in total) which give a great 1950's shape.
I used pale blue vintage fish eye buttons. Normally I'd go for white or red buttons with navy but fancied a change. Plus, they're a perfect match with this cardigan….
On Brighton beach with my boy
Talking of buttons, buttonhole placements on patterns never quite manage to be in the right place for my shape. More often than not there's a bit of gaping, which is really frustrating when the rest of the make is perfect. This time, I followed the brilliant advice Sunni from A Fashionable Stitch gave on buttonhole placement here and it worked a treat, no gaping whatsoever.
Verdict? Love it!
I've already cut out another gingham version and I'm now thinking I might need to make yet another version in white. A white sleeveless top is supremely handy to have in the wardrobe and would be a good match for my yellow Miette skirt (inspired by Marie's lovely styling here). Actually the navy polka dot version would go well with the Miette skirt too… it seems to go with everything else! Enjoy the sunshine while it lasts. x