Creative Use of Selvedges

BlueTopI never wear blue. Probably the last time there was anything blue in my wardrobe when I was in a local sorority, Tyes, at Florida Technological University (now University of Central Florida) and our colors were blue and gold. I made a blue jumper for a rush party. (Wait for it … you know the photo is to follow.)

For the next year I will be serving as campaign treasurer for my friend, Michele Lepore Hagan, who is running for the Ohio House of Representatives seat her husband, Bob Hagan, is vacating. I went with Michele to the Mahoning County Board of Elections office to file her paperwork declaring her intent to run, and—in my best patriotic intention—wore my favorite red sweater. My friend, who served as Bob’s campaign treasurer, said, “You can’t wear read. That’s the Republicans’ color.” Well, duh. So I came home and started looking for something blue-but-not-too-blue.

BlueTopFabricI found this blue rayon print at and grabbed enough to make another version of Katherine Tilton’s Vogue 8817. I’ve done this top before; here is a list of the blog posts. The fabric is very soft and cotton-y feeling. This will be a great three-seasons top.


Pattern Description: Close-fitting, pullover top has neck binding, seam detail, stitched hems, contrast variations, and optional double needle topstitching and silk screen motifs. A and B: sleeve bands. B:lower front cut on crosswise grain of fabric. D: purchased trim. Note: included are Katherine Tilton’s instructions for silk screening. This is view C/D.

Pattern Sizing: B5(8-10-12-14-16), F5(16-18-20-22-24) This is my fourth or fifth go-round with this pattern. I am 5’8″ and 38DD – I make no alterations in the pattern and love it as it is.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

Fabric Used: Rayon/lycra knit from Gorgeous Fabrics.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I cut the back a little shorter and straighter — left the length of the side seam as is and just straightened out the back a little.

I cut the middle front piece lengthwise along the selvedge, which was the darkest blue in the print.

The next time I make this top, I’ll do a vertical-only FBA, so the front won’t pull up. But really, if you don’t want to do an FBA, it’s fine as is.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? Absolutely yes – five times yes!

Conclusion: Easy, flattering top with two very different versions – both equally flattering and easy to make. Looks good in a variety of fabrics.

See the full write-up on my blog, with photos and links to the other versions.

BlueTopBackHere’s a view of the back. I wish the Spousal Equivalent had gotten the hem, but one must take what she can get when relying on the kindness of housemates. I like how the hem dips down a little on the sides after my slicing a little off the back.

That guy on my shoulder in the picture is Angel, whose disposition is anything but angelic. He is part Maine Coon and lives life on his own terms. “Pet me twice. If you pet me a third time, I will attempt to bite your hand off.”

TyesBlueGoldI’ll be wearing this top to our next campaign event. I guess any blue is better than my fave red sweater. Oh, well. Politics is not about fashion, right?

And, here’s my Tyes rush costume, circa 1969:

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About Jan

Musician and geek and Juris Doctor; lover of fine art and fine craft; mother and grandmother and significant other and friend. Passionate about sewing.

5 Responses to Creative Use of Selvedges

  1. Abigail says:

    Love the top and really LOVE the flashback photo… You turned heads in that lil’ outfit I’m sure!!! Wow…remember those “fIip” hairdos!! ox

  2. Kay says:

    You look very nice in blue, goes well with your hair — why don’t you wear it? I find my color preferences have changed over the years; I like red and black but find it somewhat too bold/stark at times and am wearing more peaches, cool greens, blues, lavenders, grays which are more relaxing and serene.

    Also, don’t you look cute in your mini! I remember those days, short skirts and flipped hair!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Kay,

      I had my “colors done” 30 years ago, and blue wasn’t on my list, so I’ve shied away from it ever since. Prior to that, back in my IBM days, I bought a bright blue suit. Every time I wore it, I was back in elementary school where our uniforms were white shirts, black skirts, and a bright blue scarf belt that was the same color as that suit. I never want to relive that gawkiness! 🙂

      And the length of that jumper – I look at it and wonder how my mother let me out of the house in it. But this is the mother who said, “When you were 14, I didn’t know what to do with you, so I just washed my hands of you.” I guess she wasn’t really worried about how much leg I was showing.

      Thanks for your note.

      • Kay says:

        Yes, it’s amazing how memories are evoked, good and bad…you are so right to surround yourself with things that make you feel better! Some colors I like are not my “best” colors but I still enjoy them as I’m less interested in how I look than how they make me feel.

        And as for the short skirts, looking back I also wonder how my mother could have let me wear them. But, I too, don’t say anything about my daughter wearing low necklines which are the style now and commonplace even with young girls. I don’t like them but then again, keeping my relationship positive by not criticizing her style is more important than my own feelings about what is appropriate. I guess I have turned into my mom!

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