I want to show you all the Bo Top I made a bit ago! This is my first foray into woven tops and it was one of the things I made during my Covid-19 lockdown sewing burst.
I’ve been meaning to make a woven top for a while, probably thought about it each of the past two summers. For all that doddiling about, the thing that finally made it happen was stumbling on this fabric during a large fabric scraps reorganisation. The latter effort being inspired by both lockdown and a wish to make my scrap dealing efforts more focussed, but more on that in a later post.
The keen eyed among you may recognise this double gauze as leftover fabric from my well worn Myosotis dress. I had originally planned to add another tier to that dress, but left it off in the end, and as a result I had quite a piece left. Most of my scraps are smaller pieces, but this one seemed to be enough to try and get a bigger project out. When I found it I instantly started thinking of a purpose for it and my mind wandered to tops. Printing out and taping a pdf pattern later confirmed that it was indeed doable (but only just), so I went ahead and cut the pieces out straight away.
There are a myriad of sewing patterns out there that I could have chosen to go with – The Maya top, Wiksten Shift, Kalle, Cielo, Jo – are some of the patterns that spring to mind. Picking any of these patterns would probably have been fine and I will likely try them at some point in the future. The pattern I settled on this time is the Bo by Seamwork because it has a lot of the features that I like in a woven top and it’s minimal style lines would allow the colour of the fabric to shine. Additionally I like Seamwork and the design was readily available for me through their credit system.
The Bo top is a cropped boxy tee with a wide and oversized fit. The neckline is finished with a bias tape facing and the armholes with sleeve cuffs. All in all, a straightforward easy sew that you could finish in one sitting if so inclined.
I almost never get a bias tape faced neckline right on the first go. I’ve learned that I am quite particular about how necklines drape though so I learned to take the extra time and effort in stride. The neckline is quite wide, much wider than I expected it to be, which isn’t ideal when layering over things. So that is my main squib with the top, and something I would alter to be more narrow in future versions.
I chose the size based on the bust. I have a large bust size, and you can see that depending on how it falls it creates somewhat of a high/low hem effect. I could probably have done something about that if I had tinkered with the pattern more but honestly I can’t be bothered, it is a minor thing. Also I am a person with a large bust, and it is OK that things fit me as such.
This finished top surprised me. I mainly wanted to make a woven top for summer to wear with culottes, specifically the Ninni’s I made two summers ago. I was eager to see how the two pieces would combine, so the moment I finished I went to try it on together…and absolutely hated the combination! Haha, not the result I anticipated, but I think I might try it with a more tapered pair of trousers and see how I like that. Both the Bo and culottes are quite voluminous and boxy in a way and perhaps you can have too much of a good thing? I do like it worn over high waisted skirts and luckily it surprised me in other ways too; as I discovered it pairs well worn layered over dresses and tops, which I hadn’t thought of before.
Overall I’m pleased with the tee. I think this has the potential to be worn a lot on it’s own and layered under and over things, even with the wider neckline. As with the Myosotis, I love the colour and it combines well with other pieces in my wardrobe and that obviously helps a lot. I also think the pattern offers some hack possibilities that I might explore at some point. One thing I learned is that woven tops definitely have a place in my wardrobe so I don’t think this will be the end of my exploration in that area.
Hope you are all well and are able to set aside some time to spend doing something that fills you. Until next time!
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