When I saw lovely Lisa’s brilliant jersey version of the Sophia top I knew a lot of you would like to see that adaption so I’m over the moon to introduce my first ‘guest poster’ Tiny Stitcher to show you how…
Well hello there!
I’m here to show you how to make your Sophia Top in jersey and it’s super simple! The only major change is the neckline as it’s bound rather than faced and to do this you have to make a new pattern piece for it.
You need to start by measuring the neckline of your pattern, you can do this by standing your tape measure up and measuring along the front and back neck curve. You can also use a piece of string and mark the curve length on that, then measure it with your tape measure.
I normally measure it more than once to make sure that the measurement is correct, once you have your measurement you need to take 10% off the amount as your neckband should be 10% smaller than your overall measurement. Now you need to decide how wide you want your neckline to be, I decided to make my 1.5 cm so I drew a rectangle 57 cm x 5 cm as you fold your neckband in half, we’ll get to that later. Now the reason the width is 5 cm not 3 cm is that I’ve added 1 cm for seam allowance on either side, so don’t forget to add that to your pattern piece. Now the final step before you cut it out is to add 1 cm to the length of your neckband, again for seam allowance as the neckband is sewn together. I promise that there’s no more maths involved!!
Now cut out your front and back pieces out of your chosen jersey and cut the neckband on the fold. And we can start sewing!
Firstly you’ll need to stabilize your shoulder seams, you can do this be stitching a cotton tape, invisible tape or even a strip of fabric selvedge, as I have done, to the back shoulder seam. This will stop you shoulder seams from stretching out of shape. Cut a piece that’s slightly longer on either side, pin and zig zag in place. Once it’s sewn trim whatever you’re using to stabilize the seam down to size. Sew the shoulder seams together and press the seams towards the back.
To prepare the neckband start by pining the edges together and sewing them, then trim down your seam allowance to 0.5 cm. To get the band ready to sew you need to fold it in half lengthways wrong sides together and press, give it a good old press until it sits nicely.
The final neckband prep is to mark the points on the band where you’re going to attach it to the neckline of your top. Start by folding the neckband in half and marking with chalk and then folding it again, so essentially you are dividing the neckband into quarters.
Now we need to do the same thing to the top, so fold the top in half making sure you line up the edges and mark the points and then fold it again and mark.
With right sides together pin the neckband to the neck line of the top at the corresponding points.
I prefer to sew my neckbands only pinned at these four points and stretch the neckband to fit the top as I sew, I must stress that you need to be really careful not to stretch the actual garment as then you’ll end up with a bit of a gapey neckline going on and no one wants that. So if you feel more comfortable stretching the neckband to fit and pinning it all the way round before you sew it then go ahead and do it that way.
Once you’ve attached the neckband give it a good old press again so it sits it place, if you want to now you can topstitch around the neckband on the right side of the garment a couple of millimetres in from the edge. I chose not to do this on mine as it was quite narrow and I preferred it without the topstitching, if your neckband isn’t behaving itself then topstitching it will make it stay in place.
Now you’ve done the most complicated part go and get you self a cup of tea and/or gin as the rest is a doddle! Sew the side seams together and to finish off the armholes press up 1cm for a hem on the inside and sew round. You can use a zig zag stitch for this or a longer straight stitch. The same thing applies to the hem, press the hem width and then pin in place and stitch with your choice of a straight stitch or zig zag.
You can obviously use a overlocker/serger to do all this but I did this all on my trusty sewing machine because I have an irrational fear of overlockers and I haven’t bit the bullet and bought one yet!
Ta Dah! You’re all done and you can show off your fancypants new top!
THANK YOU so much Lisa- what an amazing tutorial! I can’t wait to see all your knit versions sew-a-longers and do go visit Tiny Stitcher and her amazing blog! X Gabby