Top Ranked Tanks


I appear to have been a bit MIA for the best part of April - but thought I'd pop back in for a little post on tank tops! Vest tops? Camis? Whatever you may call them... little useful jersey tops.

The best bit about sewing a tank is that it takes both very little fabric, and very little time! I've been short on the latter so a few scrap busters and palette cleansers have occurred. 

Winnats Tank

I'll start with my favourite - The Winnats Tank by Wendy Ward. It's a simple classic and I find the fit stop on. I have lost count of how many of these I have made over the years, in many variations. 

The pattern can be found in Wendy's book - A Beginner's Guide to Sewing with Knitted Fabrics - this books seemed to be underrated/not often mentioned in the sew'osphere however it's absolutely brilliant. There's 20 great patterns in there people - and it's only £8!!

 This is my most recent version in the prettiest ladybird jersey ever from Beyond the Pink Door. As the tank is a super simple standard, you can hack it each way to Sunday. My version has the neck and arm bands on, and a little strip of elastic at the center front to create a gathered neckline. 

 For 'cute' overload I went for a little bunny label as I made this at Easter.

Zoey Tank

A new found favourite of mine is now the True Bias- Zoey Tank. I didn't initially buy this pattern as I thought it was very 'skin-tight' in style but I was pleasantly surprised with how it fits. Skims the right bits! (I made a 16/18)

This pattern is a brilliant scrap-buster for leftover pieces of jersey as you don't need to get any shoulder straps in as part of the main bodice. It's 2 small bodice pieces and then some strips for the straps and neckline. 

The construction is quite fun as you pop all the neckline and straps on first and then whizz it up the sides to finish. The pattern also comes with a dress version and neckline expansion pack for different looks. 

This is made from leftover scraps of Monet Jersey (listed as 'Lily Pond') from Hey Sew Sister - left over from my Agnes tee.

Another in leftover scraps from my Westcliff Dress. 

Weiland Tank

Another new-to-me pattern is the Elbe Textiles - Weiland Tank. Also another rogue entry as I really wasn't sure about the 'cropped' nature of this and definitely didnt want my mid-riff hanging out. 

I had a little insta-browse and actually it's not a drastic crop at all, it sits just at the top of high waisted jeans. I am so glad I tried this as the pattern is gorgeous and sizing brilliant. There are 2 cup options and a serious of sizes for each. The charts put me at a 'G' and that's what I made with 1" added to the length. It fit, no adjustments or changes needed.

The fabric is Meet Milk Derby Ribbed Tencel Jersey and I cannot tell you how silky soft and beautiful it is. It is pricey but I got the top and lining from 1m and it was totally worth it.

The pattern has a shelf-bra lining option which is great, this folds inside the tank and creates that lovely smooth neckline finish. You can add foam inserts but I didn't bother. You can wear a bra with this as although the back is low, it does still cover straps. That back!

One Shoulder Tank

I'll throw a random curve ball here - a one shoulder tank! I made this as I wanted something to mix and match with skirts, trousers, shorts for a holiday. 

The pattern is Pattern Emporium - One Shoulder Tank and in true PE style, there are a million variations and about 300 pages of instructions!  Definite value for money.

This was made from bamboo jersey from the stash and may be a little too thin for purpose however it's very cool and comfortable. I started off with a size 16 but did have to reduce it to make sure the sides were secure. I think it's now about a 14. 

This pattern also comes with the option of a shelf bra (which due to the thin fabric you can see a bit) - a great addition to make this top more practical if you hate strapless bras. A little flash of the innards here!

The neckline and arm is finished with binding, or bands...or a ruffle... I did say there were choice! I went for a classic binding for an unfussy version.

Many thanks for joining me again today. I you have any favourite stretch tank patterns do let me know in the comments!

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Kalle Hacking

 I don't think a year has gone by when I haven't made a version of the Kalle shirt pattern by Closet Core

It has been on the blog several times in several guises but I thought it was worth another mention. If you came here for construction and sizing do search my site as there is plenty there.

This time I went for a little pattern hacking to see if I could pop some interesting details on my favourite shirt. 

 After browsing Pinterest I came across a really pretty two-tone collar detail and fell in love. Lo' and Behold, I then saw it again some time later on a sewing pattern! Ose Patterns have a shirt called the Polly Top with this exact detail on it. I must be clear, I would absolutely have bought the Ose Patterns version had it been in my size, unfortunately I fell out of their size range and it was not possible.

Not to worry - I cracked out pen and paper and just drafted my own which was a lot easier than expected. I took the original collar piece, traced it, drew on my new lines and snipped it apart. Add some seam allowance and there we have a new collar. 

The not so easy bit was constructing the collar and sewing that inside corner...twice. Let's just say it took some practice!

 Once the collar was done, the rest of the shirt was as normal, save for a little strip of black fabric across the back yoke to add a bit more detail. 

I have now made the dress, tunic and cropped versions of this pattern - this one is a hybrid. I straightened off the hem and it's now hip length and sits nicely with jeans.

This fabric is PawPrint Patrol by Minerva, one of their exclusive prints which you can find here. (Paid for not gifted!) I just absolutely adore the soft blue and contrast colours on it. I'm also pleased to report I have already worn this shirt - woo!

 Excuse the photos which looks like I'm half asleep with a cat whizzing on me. 

The trousers here are the Saguaro Pants by Friday Pattern company made in a heavy crepe. I'll do another post about those soon as I have adjusted the pattern slightly and do have plans for more. To summarize though - comfy. 

 I also just realized I never posted my 2022 version of this shirt, also made in March - so here you go - double whammy. Also if you are like me and have forgotten what the sun looks like, here's a quick reminder.

This is the cropped version in some super cute fabric called 'Warbler Birds' from Lamazi

Different year, same ol' pose. I haven'#t worn this very much due to it being very cropped however I will give that look another go this year when it warms up a bit. 

I don't want to mislead anyone into thinking all my sewing is wearable, you just get to see the good projects as a whole. There have been major disasters along the way and I have blogged about those. That being said I must have been pleased with this make:

Many thanks for stopping by and seeing, yet again, the Kalle shirt. 

Feel free to comment and come and say hello on InstagramFacebookPinterest and Bloglovin too xxx

March Making with Norwich Sewcials

 I appreciate it is now April however March was crazy crafty! There have been some fantastic things going on in Norfolk if you love making and creating. 

Makers Festival took place at the beginning of the month, where I was giving a talk on all things gadget at a Norwich Sewcials meet-up. The lovely Fabric Wrangler dealt with needles and caused a stir when she pointed out the 8 hour stitching lifespan of a machine sewing needle.... (Guilty. I do not change mine that often!)

Whilst we represented dress-making, there was every kind of craft you could think of to have a go at! I absolutely loved trying lino printing with Stella Box Designs and even came away with one of her pieces of art.

 The next day was the East Anglian Yarn Festival which is in it's second year. Fuelled by a coffee and snack with a lovely sewing friend it was around the showground for a spot of shopping. 

There was an incredible amount of local yarn dyers and spinners and all sorts I felt a bit out of my depth! I did however hit up Sincerley Louise and fan girled her again. Then bought a shark knit kit. As you do.

The future Squish the Shark

Rounding off the month nicely was then the Norwich Sewcials Spring Retreat! A three day stay at Barnham Broom overlooking lovely green countryside, surrounding by people all sewing together, bliss!

Much hilarity was had, cocktails drunk and tasty food consumed. Here are a few highlights! Do check out our website if you think you might enjoy a Spa & Sew weekend.

I tried my first ever attempt at cross stitch with this cute little kit from Sew Sophie Crafts. The best bit of sewing retreat is the wealth of knowledge in the room all sharing tips and ideas!

There was even time to make a little knitted frog during the weekend as people were happily stitching away. This is the Dot Pebbles Knits pattern that has taken on a life of its own on Instagram. (Search for #imadethisfrog and you'll be astounded). He has wire knitted into his arms and legs to make him pose-able! I figured he should be called Barnham after the place he was made.