The “Not So Fast” Top
Fabric: Thrifted polyester, $5; discarded men’s shirt
Pattern: Colette Sorbetto
Notions: Bias tape, 10 cents
Time to complete: about 5 hours
First worn: To the park with my family
Wear again? I wish I could say yes, but it needs to be reworked again. I like the idea, though.
Total price: $5.10
For no very good reason, I’m a little buttonhole-averse (and it was a relief, reading through the introductions, to know I am not the only one). So, I wanted a pattern this week in which the buttonholes were the only complication – no set-in sleeves, no fussy collar.
None of my patterns really met the criteria, so I decided instead to add a placket to the Sorbetto tank. There are some examples online, and I was all set to follow one when I remembered a sweater I used to have in which the buttonholes were sewn into a piece of grosgrain ribbon, and I thought, “Oh, that would be even easier.”
It was a promising start, anyway.
I cut and assembled the top as directed, turning the front piece into two. Then I spent what felt like a month cutting and gathering bias strips, basting the ruffle to my ribbon and attaching the resulting “placket” to the front of the blouse. It was turning out well, I thought.
With nothing left but the buttonholes, I was feeling pretty confident. Still, I figured it would be smart to practice on some leftover ribbon. Good thing I did – It took a lot of adjusting to find the right settings. After that, the first couple of buttonholes were a breeze. Why had I been avoiding buttonholes?
When it came to the third one, though, the machine completely chewed up the ribbon. Had I been working with higher quality ribbon, I might have been able to salvage it, but as it was, the thing was totally irreparable. So disappointing.
I didn’t have it in me after that to try again with a new piece of ribbon. Instead, I cut a section from the front of a shirt my husband had thrown out and sewed it, Frankenstein-style, into my blouse.
I’m glad I finished, and I think I can get the blouse into wearable shape. I also don’t feel so anxious about buttonholes anymore, so there’s that.