Amazingly all three of these gorgeous garments are constructed using only two straight seams, a couple of buttonholes and a handful of rolled seam edges. Using techniques similar to those of traditional kimono garments, the tops are created from a rectangle of fabric, folded in half. Use soft, supple fabrics that will fit your body comfortably and with ease.
- Fabric: of your choice, 1.2m (short top);
- 1.6m (long top); 2m (dress)
- Short top: cut a
- 75cm x 1.2m rectangle
- Long top: cut a
- 1m x 1.6m rectangle
- Dress: cut a
- 1.3m x 2m rectangle
- For all: cut a 10cm x 2m strip,
- to create the self-fabric tie belt.
Create a summer garment
Decide which item you’d like to make (short top, long top or dress) and cut out the fabric required using the cutting guide provided. Press the fabric and fold in half right sides together along the lengthways grain. Find the centre of the folded edge and mark it with a pin.
Create the neckline. Cut out the template provided on page 83. Place the fold line of the template to the folded edge of the fabric and adjust it so that the shoulder line of the template is in line with the centred pin. Pin the template into place and cut out the curve.
Neaten the neckline by working a machine zig zag stitch or overlocking around the edge of the fabric to strengthen it and prevent fraying. Turn the neatened edge over to the wrong side of the fabric and work an edge stitch around the curve to finish.
Work a rolled hem on the outside edges of the fabric. Turn approximately 3mm to the wrong side on one of the outer edges, turn over once more and edge stitch to secure. Repeat the process on the remaining edges of the fabric rectangle.
Stitch the side seams, following the diagram on page 83. To do this, fold the fabric rectangle in half at the shoulder line. Find the centre of the folded edge and measure 27.5cm out from it on both sides. At this point, measure down by 28cm and mark with a pencil. Draw a line, starting at this marked point and heading down towards the bottom of the garment, 25cm long. Pin along the line and stitch.
Make two buttonholes in the centre of each side seam, which will be used to thread the fabric belt through. Mark a 5cm long buttonhole with pins in the centre of each line of side seam stitching. Set your sewing machine to work with a buttonhole stitch and apply as usual.
make a self-fabric tie belt
Cut a 10cm x 2m strip of fabric and fold it in half lengthways with right sides together. Cut each end at an angle. Pin the fold in place and then stitch along the raw edges with a 5mm seam allowance, leaving a 5cm gap in the stitching line.
Turn the belt to the right side through the gap, press and close the gap by hand slip stitching. Thread the belt through the buttonholes.