You may have noticed, I’ve been on a roll with linen, and I hate to waste scraps. So, it makes sense that I’ve been building a little pile of white linen remnants, but I’ve gotten sick of using white! Enter this puffy sleeved dream of a top, that uses just a little bit of fabric, perfect for squeezing out of scraps….and a couple bottles of Rit Dye!
I wanted to make something with a low fabric requirement and/or small pattern pieces, so I wouldn’t have to patch anything together. Preferably a pattern I had sewn before, so the whole process would go smoothly and I wouldn’t have to think too much about fitting or sewing. McCall’s 7900, View B fit the bill….sort of: I had sewn it before (different view, C) but the fit was odd (baggy through the shoulders & upper bust), so I considered it a muslin. I transferred my alterations to the pattern as my first step.
Once I had the pattern sorted, I laid it out on my scraps. Everything fit, but I had to cut the sleeves on cross grain. It’s important to adhere to pattern grain lines, but this is a stable, plain weave fabric, so I knew it would be fine. I gathered up the scraps, and tossed them in a dye pot with some Rit Dye. I combined Petal Pink and Purple dyes with some salt in a pretty diluted dye bath, and let it boil for about 20 minutes before pulling the fabric out and tossing it in the washer and dryer.
This color came out exactly as I envisioned….maybe even better! Though linen is a matte fabric, the color has unexpected depth, and shifts between pink and purple, depending on the light.
I knew I needed special buttons. I found these gorgeous, heavy abalone shell buttons at Pacific Trimming. I’ve made a few garments with flower shaped buttons recently - it feels so special.
Sometimes I forget how satisfying it is to sew tops - don’t sleep on em! They’re fun to make and faster than a dress. I’ve already worn this twice, enough to know I should make another one in black. Hopefully I can get to it soon, but first I have to make some major repairs to some pants that I screwed up last night. Oof. Ok, ttyl XO Martha