I am officially obsessed with ruffles! I feel like the only thing that’s been getting me through this chilly and extremely foggy weather is planning some fun summer wardrobe. I created the swing top with 2 layers of ruffles using this organic bamboo fabric from The Sewing Retreat. I have eczema and constant Rheumatoid Arthritis flare ups so I really enjoy wearing breathable, loose fitting clothes made from natural fibers. And since both my kids have bad eczema as well, I’ll be making outfits for them from this fabric which I’ll post the patterns as I make them. I’m looking forward to a super comfy summer wardrobe for all of us!
Also, I’m collaborating with The Sewing Retreat – one of my favorite online shops for organic fabrics and trims – to give away a $5 gift card as well as a 5% discount code so go treat yourself to some eco friendly fabrics and sew some pretty tops with me! Scroll to the bottom of this post to get the discount code, instructions on how to enter the giveaway and how to get this ruffle top pattern.
This ruffle swing top was one of the 7 looks from my capsule collection which was voted by several sewing groups on Facebook as the most fun to wear and easy to make for all sewing levels. A big shout out to my fellow sewists for taking the time to vote!
Let’s get started!
Things You Will Need:
- Knit fabric – 1.5 ~ 2 yards
- Polyester thread
- Stay Tape or fusible knit interfacing – recommended
- Pattern here
*This pattern does NOT include any seam allowances . Only the half circles for the ruffles have an extra 1/4″ seam allowance added.
Don’t forget to prewash your fabric! I put mine in a laundry bag, washed it in cold water, and then hung it to dry. A warm iron will get rid of any wrinkles after drying, but be sure to test a small area first or use a pressing cloth when ironing. Also if you’re worried about the weight of the double ruffles pulling down on the neckline, try just 1 layer. Trust me, it will still look beautiful! See here for the single ruffle look. If you’re making the top in woven, add a hem allowance as well as seam allowances for the ruffles. See here for the rayon challis version.
To start off, you should have front and back bodice pieces as well as 4 circles to make the ruffles. From the self fabric, cut 3 1” wide strips cross grain – 1 strip being 1/2” longer than the entire neckline measurement, 2 strips that are 1/2” longer than the armhole measurement.
Use a knit stay tape around the neckline, shoulders, and armhole if you’re worried about the fabric drooping during wear. I like to make my own stay tape from a yard of fusible knit interfacing – it takes a bit of time but it’s so much cheaper than the rolls. I just use my rotary cutter and a self healing cutting board to cut bias strips that are 1/8” larger than my seam allowance.
Put the front and back bodices right sides together. Sew and finish only the shoulder seams. Either stay stitch the V or draw in the V with a chalk or disappearing fabric marker. Then clip about 1/8” from the point of the V.
Cut open each circle. Sew the same sized circles together with a 1/4” seam allowance. Knit won’t fray so you don’t have to worry about finishing the edges but you can double stitch and trim off the edge or use an overlocker if it bothers you. Place the smaller circle above the larger one and stitch them together within the seam allowance.
Place the ruffles around the neckline aligning them with the V. Stay stitch all 3 layers within the seam allowance.
Neck binding…Take the longest 3/4” strip that you had cut and sew it into a loop with a 1/4” seam allowance. After pressing the seams open, pin the right side of the band on the right side of the neckline above the ruffles and sew all the layers together. Then wrap the binding over the seams and sew another seam. *You can trim the seam allowances if they’re too thick. Fold the binding over onto the wrong side of the top and then topstitch.
The neckline is pretty much done except the fact that it will now look rounded instead of a V shape. To turn the rounded neck back into a V, fold the front bodice in half inside out and you will notice how the binding sticks out. Sew a straight line stopping before the topstitching and when you turn the top right side out, there will be a beautiful V neckline!
Now let’s put the bodice together by sewing and finishing the side seams. Moving onto the armscye which is finished the same way as the neckline – sew the ends together to make a loop and press the seams open. Pin the right side of the band to the right side of the armhole and sew with a 1/4” seam allowance. Wrap the binding over the seam allowance, sew it in place, and then fold the binding over onto the wrong side and then topstitch. And you’re done!
$5 THE SEWING RETREAT GIFTCARD GIVEAWAY + 5% OFF CODE
- Visit The Sewing Retreat and pick your favorite organic fabric or trim
- Comment below what you would buy if you won along with your email address
- Use code HAPPYSEWING at checkout to get 5% of any purchases. Enjoy!
The winner will be randomly selected and notified on March 22nd. Please check both your inbox and junk folder. Don’t forget to mark zune@zunessewingtherapy as a safe sender. Good luck!