Sunday, July 27, 2014

Top with Contrast Binding


This binding detail was inspired by a top I saw in RTW. If you own a coverstitch machine or serger that can attach a knit binding, this detail would be easy peasy to construct. But even without a special machine, it's not that hard to do.

I started with a TNT pattern - the Renfew, which I've made here and here. This knit is not very stretchy in the vertical direction, so I sewed in the bust darts. (By the way, I used a version of the Renfrew where I raised the neckline a bit.)

The binding is first attached vertically to the front pieces. In the RTW garment, they then placed the fronts, right sides together, and sewed a scant 1/6th of an inch seam to attach them together. I assembled them a little differently: I abutted the bound edges and whipstitched them, by hand, from the back. Once the fronts are attached to form a single unit, then the shoulder seams are sewn and the neck binding is attached, leaving a gap of about 1".

I used a black rayon/lycra jersey for the binding and I cut the strips 2" wide. I folded them in half, the long way, with both raw edges together, and sewed them to the front with a 1/4" seam. I then wrapped the folded edge around to the back and hand-stitched it in place. This makes a nice, beefy, double binding. If you have a thicker fabric, you might prefer a single binding.

I purchased this fabric last May at Santa Fe Fabrics when visiting Santa Fe, New Mexico. This printed knit is slightly crinkled and has what can only be described as a perforated texture. Very interesting.

Unfortunately I did have one mishap during construction. When serging the armscye seam, I caught the sleeve fabric in the serger blade.

Oops!

Luckily I had enough fabric to cut another (slightly shorter) sleeve, but I was already thinking of a plan B and C in case that wasn't an option. (Plan B - solid black sleeves. Plan C - some sort of elaborate patch/seaming.)

For the last two days, I've been using my long walks to head to the mall. On Friday I walked to Union Square in downtown SF, and yesterday I walked to my local mall, also in SF. I just love checking out designer RTW and the fall fashions are arriving! Woot! Fall is my favorite time of year, fashion-wise. My mojo is flowing and I wish I had more time to sew!

Nordstroms in Union Square

And, just for fun...
A very tall sculpture at work, silhouetted by the sunrise.

29 comments:

  1. I really like this top. The "V" is different and reminds me more of a keyhole.

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    1. Thanks, Dorothy! Yes, it is reminiscent of a keyhole neckline and I almost called this a keyhole detail, but I didn't because the shape is a bit different. It's quite easy to do and adds a very flattering vertical line!

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  2. The old "serger ate my sleeve story"! This is a cute top. I like black and white on you with your red hair, nice look.

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  3. I like this a lot! And it looks terrific on you.

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  4. Love the fabric, style and fit. Looks great on you!

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  5. I, too, have red hair and stay away from black & white prints staying with warmer colors. Maybe I should give B&W a try. Love your top and execution. I also love how you often use hand sewing on your garments. They do add a nice touch and good control.

    Karen

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  6. LOVE everything about this top! And it looks great on you. I was thinking of you today while hiking up a hill (not intended as exercise; I just needed to get somewhere!)...I need to start doing long walks.

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  7. Love this top, simple but very effective, now to improve my relationship with my knitbinder!

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  8. I think my mojo just received a transfusion, it seems to be waking up a little. Thanks! You look terrific, such a nice detail for the t shirt.

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  9. very cool piping, i am filing that one away for future reference!

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  10. This top is absolutely fabulous!

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  11. This is such a lovely top-I like the B/W (of course) and the opening is sophisticated.

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  12. Wonderful take off of a RTW style...very flattering with that cool vertical line...

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  13. Classy, elegant top. You did good!

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  14. Love this idea, Shams. Very flattering.

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  15. I love this RTW detail.
    So easy to execute, so flattering.

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  16. I like everything about this top, Shams. A question, if you have time. What's it like to work with a textured fabric? Thanks!

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    1. Thanks, Sandra! I had no problems at all working with this textured knit. It was very easy to sew.

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  17. Ah, I have seen a similar feature on the shoulders of a rtw boat neck top recently and being possibly a little unimaginative I was unsure of how to reproduce it, whip stitching the back is such a good idea! I love the neckline feature how you did it, too.

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  18. I really like the detail the binding adds. Very slimming lines, too. The print is a good one for you. The top looks great on your bod!

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  19. What a fabulous top! I love the print and the neck detail. You look great in it!

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  20. I always enjoy seeing your sewing projects, Shams. This top is a real winner for you. Thanks too for posting the "very tall guy" photo. I love its quirky vibe.

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  21. Dusting off my coverstitch now! Great top. I could see it also with an Alabama Chanin-style handwork. Maybe backstitch the bindings on the front and then featherstitch together or something.

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  22. Love your top, Shams. Very flattering on you. I can empathize with you regarding the serger/sleeve incident!

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  23. From Creative Hormone Rush:

    Zehr cool! And you always look so happy when you're wearing black and white. The color combination definitely is dramatic on you and really pops your face.

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  24. I love the fatter piping on this. I amused myself by imaging you did just ONE of the sleeves slightly shorter, haha. Maybe that was plan D (snort).

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