Hot Patterns Blouse Back Tee: Woven / Knit Combo

20150615-DSC_0064 photo 20150615-DSC_0064_zps9yfrxjh8.jpgYo, I had like the best hair day today. I wasn’t even going to blog these shirts again. But, my hair looked so good I wanted to memorialize this day. I gave myself a little hair trim and have been doing some new things to it and it totally paid me back today #TeamNatural.

Now, to the sewing: I’ve managed to step away from my knitting machine for a few days. Mostly because I don’t have enough clothes for our trip to Canada in two weeks! And, my casual summer work wardrobe is lacking. So, I figured I could whip up some fast tops to take. And, this Hot Patterns Blouse Back Tee might be a near record for me. I’ve made it up four times now. And, I can’t promise this will be the last. For the two  (navy blue and teal) I’m posting today, I took some of your suggestions:

  1. Used a woven sheer for the back
  2. Went down a size for the front
  3. Made my FBA with darts
  4. Decided to keep the original length of the back hem from the pattern.

20150615-DSC_0100 photo 20150615-DSC_0100_zpsblswhr6t.jpg I really like these versions too. I mean, I like this top because it goes together fast, is visually interesting and because it hides a multitude of sins. 20150615-DSC_0105 photo 20150615-DSC_0105_zps8xi1ydzn.jpg Both the sheers are from Kashi at Metro Textile (purchased with MMS photos and texting I might add) were supposed to be beach coverups. And, this navy was supposed to be a University of Michigan shirt for Jordan. So much for that…

Construction Notes: To stabilize the gathers at the back yoke, I used clear elastic. I was concerned that the woven vs knit friction might make stitches pop out if stressed. The clear elastic nicely reinforces my stitching and allows the woven to ‘give’ more. 20150615-DSC_0059 photo 20150615-DSC_0059_zpstmdcv2lr.jpg The rolled hem on the teal went beautifully. Not a single problem. The rolled hem on the blue and white was a nightmare. The hem wouldn’t catch, but I was trimming away at the seam allowance with each pass. I had to shorten the knit side seams on the navy version by four inches to get it to match the woven hem when all was said and done. 20150615-DSC_0098 photo 20150615-DSC_0098_zpstcvag3gr.jpg On the teal, I didn’t have enough fabric to to bind the neckline. So, I just turned it over and coverstitched. I wish I had done it a bit narrower as I have non existent shoulders to begin with. 20150615-DSC_0034 photo 20150615-DSC_0034_zpsyvsi6s1q.jpg For the navy, I did have enough fabric and I finished the sleeve band and the neckline with a bit of trim and coverstitching. Both the fronts are also hemmed on my coverstitch. Looks like I could have pulled that neckband snugger too.

FBA or No?

After my last post on this top, a few suggested I do an FBA with darts. I thought, why not? I’m not a big ‘cheater FBA’ person. I like to do things ‘right’ even if it’s the slower old fashioned way. So, I made a 1 inch darted FBA in the teal version first and felt I could see it rising at center front (below). For the navy version I made a 1.5 inch FBA and think that’s the ticket for me. I added more length than width though. But, I was playing around with the navy version in the mirror and I think I need a larger dart to address some of the drag lines. 20150615-DSC_0083 photo 20150615-DSC_0083_zpstvgiiauv.jpg Anywho, People LOVED these tops on me. I have two knit versions and no one said anything about them. But, out and about the last few days I had people stopping to tell me how cute they were.

Both of these tops were posted on Instagram. But, I know not everyone is one it. And, I can’t babble on like this for a photo site now can I? 20150615-DSC_0089 photo 20150615-DSC_0089_zpsm7zm1ckr.jpg


  1. Even though you posted them on Instagram it’s nice to see them on you! I can see why you love this pattern and why you want to make more – they look great on you!

  2. Both tops look great! Love the teal color on you. And yay for good hair days! It’s been so wet/humid in the Midwest the last few weeks that I’ve given up on my hair for now.
    Also, thanks for posting on your blog. I know it takes more time than just uploading to Instagram, but I’m not on it and already spend too much time on social media to join.

    • Thank you! It helps that my cell phone camera is just ‘ok’. So, I really don’t use it to take photos of my outfits.

      On Mon, Jun 15, 2015 at 9:47 PM, Miss Celie's Pants wrote:


  3. the shirts are beautiful. I love that you can just whip up whatever you want to wear whenever you feel like it

  4. You are an amazing seamstress!   I love every one of your posts.   I’m always excited to see what’s going to be up your sleeve next.  Please excuse my ignorace *grin* but,  I’d love to know what an FBA is.  All this lingo!  I think I’m finally getting better at all this.   I can deviate from a pattern but then i kinda stress out the rest of the way.  If you ever want to elaborate on how you do your sway back alterations I’d love to learn about.  I’m one of them too. You’ve got a winner on your shirt patterns,  they look great on you.  Anyways,  have fun in all your travels.   One of these days I’ll bring out my knitting machine and we can swap stories since you’re the only one i know besides me who has one.  Noelle

    Sent from my Sprint Samsung Galaxy® Note 4.

    • Thank you! A FBA is a full bust adjustment. Usually needed if you are above a B or C cup (depending on the pattern draft). I have a narrow back but a full bust so I really need to make an FBA in everything if I want it to not strain or ride up at the front. Also, I’m all about knitting machine friends!

      On Mon, Jun 15, 2015 at 9:59 PM, Miss Celie's Pants wrote:


  5. Your hair day was pretty epic and needed to be documented. Also Linus is a cutie photobombing you. Love the tops and I can’t wait to hear more about the knitting machine!

    • LOL!! Yasssss! And weirdly, my husband sang/rapped that to me this morning.

      On Mon, Jun 15, 2015 at 10:31 PM, Miss Celie's Pants wrote:


  6. Love both tops. Knit & woven is interesting. How do you like how they wear as the woven back wouldn’t have much give. And you’re coming to Canada? Where abouts?

    • I think the elastic makes all the difference. I’m not ‘careful’ taking it on and off because I can feel it giving when I pull it on. I used a serger for the side seams which also helped add a bit of stretch to the construction. We’re going to Montreal for a few days then Ottawa.

      On Mon, Jun 15, 2015 at 10:32 PM, Miss Celie's Pants wrote:


  7. I don’t know if my first comment will show up at some point, but for fear of repeating myself, I will just say the tops look good and I totally understand about the hair. Twist outs are a gamble. You never know how they will turn out. I am assuming of course that you did a two strand twist out?

    • Twist outs are a total crapshoot. This was day two hair and I couldn’t believe how great it was looking. Lately, I use Curlformers to stretch my hair, updos for a week and then taking it down and wearing a twist out for a few days. I think the twist out works best on stretched hair. Oh, and only aloe vera gel, coconut oil and leave in conditioner to set it. I’m also getting much better about spritizing my hair with water (and aloe vera juice). That’s way more info that you asked for, isn’t it?

      On Tue, Jun 16, 2015 at 3:55 AM, Miss Celie's Pants wrote:


      • My hair is probably the polar opposite of yours, and I confess I have no idea what you’re talking about… (I just blow dry my hair and try to forget about it for the rest of the day.) But your hair looks fabulous!

        Love the shirts, too. You wrote that they hide a multitude of sins, to which I respond, what sins? You look great to me!

  8. It’s good to see these on you, they look great. I was curious about the FBA as well since I’m a 32g, will probably do better with one myself. With the woven back, a cheater FBA likely wouldn’t work out well anyway, so your real darted way is best. You were having a great hair day, hope it’s a great hair week. Have fun in your travels.

  9. OK, you’ve inspired me. I have this pattern, but have’t made it up yet. Guess I better hit it.
    Love the mixed media versions, but I liked your first knit versions also 🙂

  10. Fabulous hair and fun tops! If your rolled hem was on the serger, you can feed it through with strips of wash away stabilizer to help it catch. I also do this if I’m serging lace fabrics together.

  11. I”m going to go random and say, love the tops, but wondering if you ever got on the Ginger Jeans train? I remember you saying something abut wanting to sew some jeans.

    • I promise you they are on the top of my summer sewing list. I have so much denim to try them out in. I have the copyshop of the first version but wonder if I should redownload the rerelease…

      On Tue, Jun 16, 2015 at 4:57 PM, Miss Celie's Pants wrote:


  12. I made this pattern last summer and loved it. Your post reminded me how much , so I am cutting out another one. First thought when I opened your blog was how cute your hair is. Love that kind of loose twisted curl. Very becoming.

  13. Lets see where to start.. 1. Love that little photo-bombing baby peeking around your legs. 2. #TeamNatural. Yes indeed your hair was CAHUTE (Cute with lots of emphasis) Also your make up was very natural looking and pretty (assuming you were wearing makeup) 3. Love the tops. I have several RTW tops like this. I love them.

  14. I wish a little sewing fairy would sprinkle magic dust on me so I have more time to sew these days… I am desperate for these exact same sort of shirts. These are really great!

  15. First I love your hair the twist out really looks good. Second I purchased the pattern after seeing how good the top looked on you. Now I just have to make it. Have fun in Canada P.S thanks for the tip about the aloe vera jel and coconut oil I purchased some natural product and it made my hair itch so bad so now I and going to only use natural ingredients I hope this was not TMI

    • Not TMI at all!! Weirdly, I could talk about natural hair almost as much as sewing. I also like to mix water and aloe vera juice as a daily spritz. I’ve been doing that the last week and my hair was much softer and I think helped a lot with dry scalp. And, an excellent leave in conditioner that’s good for twist outs too is Sleek and Shine by Fructese. Seriously, these five products are the only think I use now to style. For color and conditioning, I use coconut milk mixed with henna once a month

      On Sun, Jun 21, 2015 at 10:52 PM, Miss Celie's Pants wrote:


  16. I never have a good hair day without plenty of work. Everyone wants stick-straight hair, except those of us who have it…gah! Your tops are cute, but I really liked seeing Linus peering out from behind you in a couple of the shots. Nice to know he’s doing a proper job supervising your work and/or photo shoots.

  17. I absolutely adore this time I agree with you, it’s one you definitely have to have! They look so freakin’ cute on you too! Sorry I missed this post when it first came out and I have to say your hair is SO GORGEOUS! Good luck on your trip to Montreal, can’t wait to see some photos and have fun!


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