There’s nothing like a monthlong trip with one suitcase to give you a deep appreciation for a versatile garment. This top was inspired by such a trip. The original, in a tiger-print jersey, drew many compliments, and I found it could be worn alone or as a layer.
A cap-sleeve cowl neck combines T-shirt simplicity with a flattering cut and delicious fabric options. All winter, drop it on over a turtleneck or long-sleeve jersey for warmth without the bulk of a sweater. The draping around the neck and in the back is equally interesting in lightweight knits for summer.
Two yards of fabric with two-way stretch are required for this one-size-fits-most garment. The secret to a quick finish is purchased bias-cut strips of sheer nylon knit, such as Seams Great. It’s easy to use, with a natural curl to cover seam allowances neatly. It saves you from cutting and sewing any fabric bindings or facings.
Our wintry version is made in a loosely woven cotton/rayon with a touch of Lurex. Necessity drew me to a garment like this, but you’ll see it is a lot of fun to invent new looks for it.
Tip: Choose fun fabric. The top doesn’t require much fabric to make, so indulge in a rich fiber and/or color.
- Fabric with two-way stretch, 2 yards
- Seams Great seam and hem finish by Dritz (one package, 5⁄8 inch by 10 yards)
- Sewing machine
Construct the shirt
The top’s back is made with two pieces for fullness. You’ll sew the back together, then staystitch the neck edges before you sew the shoulder seams.
1 Cut out the fabric. Follow the pattern diagrams on page 94 to draft the pattern pieces full-size on gridded paper. Cut one cowl, one front, and…