How to make a petal top
Like, wow. This is one of those "oops... got too excited and didn't do my research before jumping in..." projects. Let me back up.
Since spring of 2009 when I saw I Love You, Man in theaters, I have been gaga over bright yellow and I loooove the wardrobe of Rashida Jones's character. Seriously, when you need some eye candy and wardrobe inspiration, watch this movie. One of the items I really covet is this little yellow top she wears:
I didn't really care about the sleeves, so I used this pattern that I've come to like for the basic top structure:
So anyway, here's the tutorial.
- Get a basic top pattern that you like. Cut out the front and back and whatever other pieces you need (I just needed bias strips for binding the neck and sleeve openings).
- Cut out your petal shapes (on a band), in alignment with the neck edge of the top. See, I matched up the neckline to my petal pieces so that they would curve perfectly around the neck. I left that extra 1/2" on the petals because I figured my bias edge would cover it. I didn't really think ahead to the other rows of petals. Oops.
- Some of my petals were cut in half, so I sewed them up and pressed the seams open:
- Total, I used 25 petals. Cut this many, and read the next step below:
- I had petal trains of different sizes, which was fine since they will lay staggered on the top. Here's the funky part: depending on the fabric you use, you could do this part one of several different ways. I used heavy linen look fabric, but if you used a lightweight or semi-sheer cotton, you would CUT TWICE AS MANY PETALS, sew them right sides together, press and turn them right side out, so the petals would have no raw edges. You could apply them to the shirt differently, too. If you had medium-weight fabric, you could turn under a 1/4" hem on all the petal edges, so they would show topstitching but no raw edges.
- I have heavy fabric, so my petals will hold up without a second layer or hem. To protect their shape a little and give them some finish, I will stitch through them 1/4" in from the edge.
- Using whichever finishing method you need based on fabric weight, pin your petals down at the bottom row.
- Sew those down and pin the next row, and the next (I used four rows of petals in the front, each 1/2" above the next).
- Next, I looked at my extra petal pieces and decided to arrange them around the back of the neck, too. I used some of my individual petals for this:
- Sew those down.
- Now, finish the neck and sleeve edges however you want to. I used bias strips, you could give it sleeves or facings. A hidden neck facing would have looked good, I should have done that... darn.
- That's it! See?
I said this was a sort of frustrating project. Here's why. About half way through the process I explained above, I did some more internet research and found more pictures of the top.
There was some buzz about it when the movie first came out, and I was able to ascertain that it is by Pringle of Scotland, sold for $750 on Net a Porter. Oh, and it's sold out. Seriously, $750??? Seriously? Here it is. It's called the "Disc detail top"--yeah, that's right, "discs," not petals.
I still like how it turned out, mind you, and I will still wear it. But stay tuned, because I am planning on doing a tutorial for a disc top sometime soon. I am determined to copy that shirt!! I have some semisheer navy cotton that would be nice. Trust me, I will do a tutorial for this exact top. ;)