T-shirts are a common summer wardrobe item. Sometimes you want to dress up your look without sacrificing comfort. So-Sew-Easy has some great beginner patterns for women’s tops/t-shirts that are fancy and I decided to sew two of them. This is a how to sew a women’s fancy t-shirt So-Sew-Easy Waterfall Top and On-A-Roll T-shirt project review.
The link to So-Sew-Easy’s Waterfall Top pattern and video tutorial is: Waterfall Top
The link to So-Sew Easy’s On A Roll T-shirt pattern and video tutorial is: On-A-Roll T-shirt
These patterns are for personal use.
For the purposes of my review, I’m going to summarize the basic steps, tell you what I did differently (if anything) and share my general thoughts about sewing these projects.
I don’t have a lot of experience sewing clothing or sewing knits, so these two beginner sewing projects from So-Sew-Easy seemed like a great way to increase my sewing skills. Both projects make women’s tops/t-shirts that are fancier than traditional t-shirts. The Waterfall Top has an asymmetrical neckline with an optional shoulder strap on the lower side. The On-A-Roll T-shirt has a fancy neckline and three options for sleeve length: short, 3/4 length and long. Both tops fit a variety of sizes/body types.
You need stretchy knits for both of these women’s fancy t-shirts and your choice of fabric can impact the final outcome. My solid knit is quite thin and rolls easily along the cut edges. As per the Waterfall Top video tutorial, this is a poor fabric choice for this project. It didn’t drape well and the finished top is too shear. My striped knits are heavier in weight and drape beautifully. Unfortunately the blue one is more sheer than I would like. It’s not is issue for the Waterfall Top where the blue fabric is used for the back and waterfall detail, but it did make my blue On-A-Roll T-shirt more revealing that I would like. I’ll probably wear a camisole under it.
I was pleasantly surprised by how few steps there were for this project. There is literally one piece of fabric to cut. That being said, knits can be difficult to work with if you’re not experienced. I had a lot of trouble cutting the thin, solid fabric, square and ended up creating a fabric template (half the required width and cut on fold) for my second Waterfall Top. My elastic isn’t as stretchy as the elastic Debie used and a 16” long piece wouldn’t stretch to the 36” length of the my fabric. I used 18” of elastic for the side with the most gathers and 16” of elastic for the other side.
I tried on my incomplete top and used safety pins to pin the shoulder seam and to mark the center of the shoulder strap position along the top edge of the top. I cut my shoulder strap fabric 12” long and 5” wide then sewed the long edges together with a ½” seam allowance. This created a shoulder strap that was 12” long and 2” wide. You can make your shoulder strap any width or omit it all together. I pinned the shoulder strap in place and then tried on my top again to make sure I was happy with the shoulder strap length. I ended up cutting off several inches of the shoulder strap.
This is a long flowing top by design, but I find it quite long on my short torso. I think I will make my next Waterfall Tops shorter.
The instructions for this pattern made it fairly easy to select the appropriate size. I compared the pattern to some of my store bought T-shirts for added piece of mind. If you do so, keep in mind that the seam allowance for this t-shirt is 5/8”. I would have preferred a vertical stripe, but the fabric’s direction of greatest stretch needs to go around your body. This t-shirt has five pieces of fabric to cut out, and still took less time to sew than the Waterfall Top. I was surprised by how quickly I was able to sew this shirt. The method of sewing the shoulder seams, sleeve seems then side seams is so efficient that I can only image that all t-shirts use this method.
I really like the length of this T-shirt as it’s not overly long on my short torso.
Here are some photos of my finished Waterfall Tops and On-A-Roll T-shirts:
These two beginner patterns make it easy for even novice sewers to sew women’s fancy t-shirts. Knitted fabric, thread, and some elastic (for the Waterfall Top) are all that is needed. The written patterns and video tutorials make it easy to get great results in a short amount of time. I recommend these projects and look forward to sewing them again in the future.
Have you sewn your own tops or t-shirts? Have you tried these patterns? Did you like this post? Comment below and/or Pin me for later!