The majority of this back detail top by Amanda Walker is made with a four thread overlocker. A sewing machine will also be needed to make buttonholes and gathering stitches; however it can also be made entirely on a sewing machine if it has a stretch stitch function.
- Jersey fabric, 150cm wide x 1.4m
- Lightweight iron-on interfacing
- Matching thread
- Six buttons
- Small, medium, large
- Cutting guide
- Front: cut one on fold
- Back: cut one pair in fabric;
- Button facings: cut one pair in interfacing
- Sleeve: cut one pair
- Neck band: cut one
- Cuff: cut two
- 1cm seam allowances are used throughout.
Stitch a button back top
1 Download and print the pattern, above. Cut out the pieces according to the cutting guide. Iron interfacing onto the back button facing positions and press the button facing onto the wrong side. Neaten the edge by overlocking. Match the shoulder seams of the front and back pieces, pin and stitch together.
2 Fold the neck band in half lengthways with right sides facing. Stitch down each end then turn the band right side out and press flat. Sew the neck band to the front and back neckline, starting and finishing on the fold line of the back button facing. The neck band is slightly shorter than the neckline, so it will need stretching to fit. Fold the button facing over onto the right side of the neck edge and sew along the neck band stitching line, then fold the button facing back to the wrong side.
3 Lay the back and front pieces together with right sides facing. Match and pin the side seams together, then stitch. Sew a row of gathering stitch around the head of a sleeve, starting from the front notch and finishing at the back notches. Match, pin and stitch the underarm sleeve seams together with right sides facing, then turn the sleeves to the right side.
4 Pull the gathering threads up slightly, then place the sleeve into the armhole of the top, right sides facing. Match the side seams and the underarm seam of the sleeve together; align the notches in the centre of the sleeve and at the end of the shoulder seam, then adjust the gathers to fit the armhole. Pin and stitch in place, then pull the gathering stitches out.
5 Match the two shorter ends of a cuff together, pin and stitch. Repeat on the second cuff. Fold the tube cuffs in half, matching the raw edges together. Place the cuffs over the base of the sleeves, matching the cuff seam and the underarm seam, plus the raw edges of the sleeve and the cuffs together. The cuff is smaller than the end of the sleeves and will need stretching while stitching.
6 Overlock around the base of the top, then fold and press up a 2cm hem. Unfold the base of the button facings and stitch the base in line with the pressed hem. Fold back to the wrong side. Stitch the hem in place; this can be achieved by either hand stitching with a loose herringbone stitch, or on your sewing machine using the stretch stitch function.
7 Mark the positions for six buttonholes on the right-hand button facing and sew in place. Hand stitch buttons on the opposite side in corresponding positions.