A fantastic summer top that can be casual or dressy depending on the fabric used or what you pair it with. My version is delightfully light and airy in double gauze. Which is perfect for the hot weather we’ve been getting earlier than normal this year. Except of course for when I want to take photos, then it rains, hehe.
This is the View Ridge Top from Straight Stitch Designs. Hot off the presses, just out this month, I snapped it up right away during the release sale because I’d been looking for a unique tank pattern for summer.
I had my doubts the ruffled version would work for my body type but decided to try it anyway in some beautiful double gauze I’d gotten from Style Maker Fabrics. I’ve never used double gauze before and it is really quite wonderful. Incredibly light and soft, just a bit puffy since two layers attach at intervals. You’d expect it to be a bit see through but it’s not, so basically perfect material for summer tops. The material was fairly easy to work with though it did fray a bit. I foolishly cut on the fold so can tell one piece is off grain because of the faint grid where the layers of fabric attach. Next time I work with this type of material I’ll know better and will cut from a single layer.
This garment is dressy enough for work with some capri pants or a pencil skirt and looks good under a cardigan. Yet it also can work casually, great with jeans and some flip flops for lounging in the park or drinks on a deck. Also, I think it looks ok without ironing and I sure love a low maintenance garment!
This pattern would have been quite quick to sew up in one evening but I had a sewing fail moment. Somehow on one armhole I sewed the bias tape onto the wrong side of the top, doh! I waited until the next day, when my brain was clearer, to unpick from the delicate double gauze and reattach. Thank goodness for seam rippers! The only other issue was I obviously broke a thread or two when trying to get the tiny fabric button loop turned right side out. After the first time through the wash my loop was all frayed at one spot. I made another loop and managed to pick out and replace the original one. Don’t you just love the little buttoned key hole back?
For this pattern I actually reached out to the designer with some questions/comments and she replied very nicely to my questions within 2 days. I was pretty impressed she got back to me that fast, it was right after the pattern release and I can only imagine how hectic and exhausting something like that would be!
Before posting this review I checked the most recent download and there has been a couple of minor tweaks to fix missing/vague instructions since I very first downloaded. However, at the time of my posting this review there are still a few things I consider missing or vague in the instructions.
- Doesn’t tell you to remove basted gathering stitches (on the lower ruffles) after attaching ruffles in step 16.
- Step 1 just says use a long stitch for the gathering stitches yet in step 14 it tells you a specific stitch length of 5 when doing the gathering stitches for the lower ruffle.
- Doesn’t provide a technique to turn the tiny loop for your buttonhole right side out after stitching in step 5.
- Doesn’t tell you to complete sewing bias tape up to the underarm seam after sewing bias tails together in step 21.
As you can tell these are all pretty common sense things one would know if they had sewed before, so admittedly this is just me being a huge stickler on detailed instructions. Please don’t take the above compulsive list the wrong way, I’m not trying to bash this pattern, just state things I noticed could be more clear. I actually really love this pattern and am already planning to use it again with a lightweight striped linen. Quite in awe of this design since I was very doubtful the ruffled version would work for me. The designer worked some magic and it has provided me a beautiful ruffled top which, despite my short torso, doesn’t make me feel dumpy or frumpy!! Priceless.
One last thing before my summary. I wanted to show a good shot of the cut of the underarm so you see how it is fitting at the arm scythe. Not showing my bra or gaping at the front. The pattern details a cheat FBA which you can use if your cup size is larger than the B cup the pattern is designed for. I followed this method and it seems to have worked very nicely for me! You will still need to have a bra that crosses in the back or connects below the keyhole though, if you don’t want bra straps showing at the shoulders and back.
Garment Cost $21.89 CAD (costs include taxes, shipping, exchange & duty)
- 0.9 m (1 yd) cotton double gauze $20.89 – Style Maker Fabrics
- thread $1.00
Pattern cost $10.66 CAD (purchased during the release sale)
- The base cost of the pattern is $12 USD at Straight Stitch Designs
Size chosen and modifications made:
- Size 8 combined with size 12 (for a “cheat” Full Bust Adjustment) chosen based on my measurement and the recommendations in the pattern instructions.
- Shortened bodice by 3″ for my very petite torso. I think 2 inches may have been enough though I don’t find this version too short.
What I liked
- The fit instructions provide a “cheat” to adjust for a full bust!
- Love the how the cut of the pattern gives a flattering shape to the bodice while still being comfortable and loose fit at the waist.
- That the ruffled front version works on my body type and ultra short torso!
- Optional cut chart which states sizes for rectangular pieces (ruffles & bias tape) rather than cutting out pattern pieces (those were still provided as well).
What I disliked
- Some minor missing info in the pattern instructions.
- No mention of seam finishes.
My rating for this pattern is 8.5/10
The pattern was well drafted and all the pieces fit together perfectly. The instructions are generally good, and included extra by linking to a video on understitching. I did note a few missing things in the instructions, minor common sense things if you have sewed before and/or they can be gleaned from other similar steps in the pattern.
In terms of fit there is a full page in the instructions talking about choosing size, mentioning grading between sizes and the cup size that the pattern was designed for. Also provides a unique method of adjusting for larger cup sizes. Although height designed for is not mentioned, there are lengthen/shorten lines and the finished garment length for each version to assist with determining adjustments for height.
This pattern is straightforward if you have sewed a few items previously. The description states it is for a “beginner looking for a challenge” rather than an absolute beginner skill level which seems reasonable. Of note, the instructions did not include a cutting layout but rather a cutting list. I actually preferred this list which specified # to cut and if cutting on the fold. I’ve never used a pattern that didn’t have a cutting layout though and wonder if this might be more difficult for a newbie.
Fabric recommendations were provide and certainly worked well for me. I managed to squeeze my top out from 1 yard of fabric but only by cutting my ruffles on the cross grain so the stated material requirements are accurate.
- Try the A-line version in linen.