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Top with front knot

4.5/5

Style analysis: sleeveless top with front knot and loose fit, separate neckband. One front section is extended upward and has added volume for pleats, then it is split so that one part passes on top of neckband and one passes below it, creating the knot.

The pattern can be lengthened to create a dress, which would look great with a belt, or can be shortened to waistline and combined with a full skirt or trouser pattern to create a 50s dress or jumpsuit.

You can sew it in any light to medium weight fabric (plain cotton, viscose, satin, crepe...).

To draft the pattern start from a basic bodice with darts. You can learn our method for drafting perfectly made to measure basic blocks (contoured ones, and the ones with and without darts, with wearing ease) and for fitting them in our basic blocks course/module 1.

Step 1

Trace front to hipline and mirror it to have full front.

Drop armhole by 6 to 8cm, then reduce shoulder top this way:

  • from high shoulder point, move sideways along shoulder line 2 to 3cm
  • from shoulder point, move inwards 5 to 6cm.

Redraw neckline from the new high shoulder point – if you want, drop neckline by 1 to 2cm in center front.

Erase waist darts and straighten side seam from armpit point to hip.

Get back (not shown) and change side seams and armholes the same way.

Step 2

Cut through the new neckline and armholes.

Draw a line parallel to neckline 4cm below it: this creates the neckband. Cut through it to separate the pieces and close shoulder darts on neckband.

Along bottom neckband line, measure 4 to 5cm from center front and draw lines to bust points: these are the lines for dart manipulation. Cut through them and close original shoulder darts.

Step 3

See how darts were manipulated.

Keep neckband aligned with front in center line, then draw a slanted line on right part of front from a point on hemline 10cm from center to a point at neckline 8cm past center (I’m talking about the red line separating numbers 1 and 3).

Then, draw slanted lines from same point at hemline to center front at neckband bottom line. Mirror the line on left side so it separates pieces 3 and 2.

Trace separate copies of pieces 1, 2 and 3 making sure to notice that they have small overlap areas. Piece 1 has a part that extends on top of neckband. Piece 3 is then cut in the middle.

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