With the heat wave we've been experiencing (not unusual as it IS summer in Texas!) I've found myself wearing sleeveless dresses and tops frequently. That way I'm comfortable when I have to be outside, and if I happen to be in place where the A/C is rather freezing (why do they do that?!?) I can simply add a cardi.
When the call went out to test the Spirren Tank Top from Itch to Stitch I quickly signed up. I knew it was something that would work with my lifestyle, and the design looked to be flattering.
The fitted tank top includes options for regular and full bust, with a slightly curved V neck, gathers at the shoulder seam, pleats under the bust, and a lined front bodice.
I decided on that sizing after sewing a a straight size 10, with full bust option, for my test version. I felt it was a bit large around my upper bust area, and under my arms.
I would not suggest stripes as it gives a bit of a droopy bust look :-) Since this was sewn just to test the fit and instructions I wasn't too concerned about the fabric.
In fact the fabric began life as an XL Lularoe tunic I found for $1 at a consignment shop. Normally I won't purchase larger sizes to refashion as I know a few people who have mentioned how hard it is to find larger sizes in thrift and consignment shops. However, once it hit the $1 sale I knew it was not of interest to most people.
I have a six inch difference between my upper and full bust measurements, and found there was plenty of room in the bust area.
I will lengthen the front bodice slightly next time, as I discovered it hits me at the lower edge of my bra rather than under my bra. With this floral fabric its not too noticeable, but if I can achieve a better fit with a slight alteration why wouldn't I?
When I first saw that the upper bodice was completely lined, my first thought was "ugh, that's extra work". Ha!Ha! BUT, oh my, does it make sewing that V neck easy and is a lovely look on the outside of the garment! Plus, with the lining it provides a little extra coverage in the bust area.
The only sewing part I found a bit difficult was the gathers at the shoulder line. I had to really watch and make sure that the back armhole and neckline matched up nicely before stitching. The back armholes and neckline are finished before the back is attached to the front. You end up sandwiching the back shoulder seam between the front and lining pieces. It sounds confusing, but follow the instructions. It works!
I wasn't going to show you the inside as I was having trouble with the tension on my serger stitches, but I think it's helpful to see if you end up sewing this one. I didn't have enough fabric to self line so I used a knit lining. The neck, V front, and armhole seams are all stabilized with strips of interfacing or fusible stay tape. You also understitch the lining (as much as possible) and it really helps encourage the main fabric to roll slightly to the inside.
The reason I didn't have enough fabric to self line is because this top began life as a knit dress I purchased for $1 at that consignment shop! I think it had been left unsold as the button at the back of the neckline was missing. It was a cute dress and I considered wearing it for the summer, but I really like this fabric as the Spirren Tank Top!
My plan is sew another soon, and no, I'm not going to use a $1 item next time :-) . I think I'll sew an animal print one as that will transition very well into the fall season.
The PDF pattern comes in sizes 00 - 40 (bust sizes 31-1/8" to 60") and requires knit fabric with 50% stretch. It was released today (August 5, 2021) and will be on sale (20% off) through August 11, 2021. You can read more about the top here BTW, that link is an affiliate link (which means - at no additional cost to you - I get a small commission if you use it to purchase the pattern. I use those funds to help support the Sharon Sews YouTube channel).
The day I took these photos it was 90 degrees F at 8 am, and it appears that type of heat will be continuing for a while. Which means I'm going to get a lot of wear out of my new Spirren Tank Top!