Top with drawstrings


Let's draft the pattern for this trendy top with drawstrings. It is perfect for spring and summer and would look great with a matching skirt.

You can sew it in any lightweight, stretch material as jersey or lycra.

To draft the pattern, start from a copy of your basic block with darts and negative ease (block for knits).

If you wonder how to calculate negative ease or how to create a block that fits perfectly your unique body...We prepared a course on drafting made to measure basic blocks: click here to learn all details!

Step 1

Trace a copy of basic block with darts and negative ease for stretch fabrics. The ease is reduced in % according to the amount the fabric stretches.

Draw the underbust line and widen waist dart as a rocket: the underbust to waist section is 3cm wide all the way, while the bust to underbust section is shaped as a classic dart.

You also need a copy of the basic sleeve – remember that sleeves on knits do not need ease at cap.

Step 2

Get the front and draw the V neckline and the keyhole opening.

Keep the V section slightly rounded (it fits better) and deep to bust height.

Cut on the new lines.

Step 3

Get front and back and draw the style lines for the separate pieces:

  • back is open from the lower section of armhole to center
  • front is open from a matching point on armhole to front neckline
  • front has a cutout in center, up to underbust.

Cut through the lines.

Step 4

These are the new pieces: one piece for back (on the left) and two pieces for front (on the right side).

On front upper piece, draw a slash line from bust point to neckline. Cut through this line to manipulate the dart volume. Close the previous darts.

On front bottom section, close the dart.

Step 5

See the front with manipulated darts and the new shaped.

Manipulate also back dart extending it all the way up to the neckline and then taping it close.

Step 6

On front and back pieces, draw some slash line to add volume for gathers.

On back, draw some evenly spaced slash lines.

On front upper piece, draw a couple of slanted lines from neckline to side seam.

On front lower piece, draw some slanted slash lines from keyhole opening and center front toward side seam.

Step 7

Cut through all slash lines and spread the pieces.

Space them by 2 to 4cm (depending on the fabric you will be using and on the gathers you like).

Redraw the whole back and front shapes filling the gaps.

Step 8

Your new pattern is ready! It includes:

  • back with side gathers, to be cut on fabric fold
  • front upper piece with side gathers and neckline drawstring
  • front bottom piece with side gathers and keyhole drawstring, to be cut on fabric fold
  • sleeve (we suggest a drawstring/elastic at sleeve cap)
Step 9

Here you can find a video where we sew a similar garment 😉

Can’t wait to see your new drawstring tops!

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