Our favorite beginner sewist, K. C., has made her first top. She’s learned new skills and had a few challenges but she kept the faith and finished!
Downloading the Pattern
I’m still working my way through the Sew News Sew Quick + Easy patterns and decided the Antero Tank Top would be the next project because of the versatility of tank tops. The directions for printing the pattern were a little confusing so I started by just printing the first page of the pattern. The bottom of the first page gives you a template overview with a sizing test square to use to ensure your printer aspects are accurate. After checking the sizing and printing the pattern, I put the pattern together like a puzzle.
Ms. Roz suggested a Viscose/Linen Blend, and I specifically chose this color because I knew the gold would look great on my skin tone. Now that I’m writing this, I now know the actual color of the fabric is Amber, but for this writing purpose, I’ll continue to call it gold. 🙂 I wanted to go with a bold color and I knew I would be able to pair the tank top with many pieces I already owned. Tank tops are so versatile, it would be easy to create a few looks with it.
To prepare for the sewing process, I pre-washed the fabric separately in the washing machine in a cold setting. I honestly didn’t notice any shrinkage with this fabric.
Pinning and Cutting Out the Fabric
This pattern was much more complicated than I thought it would be, and it had many more pieces compared to the skirts I made previously. The size lines on the pattern were a little challenging to read accurately because some of the different size lines were very similar. I definitely pinned the fabric before cutting it. The fabric is very lightweight and much easier to actually cut in comparison to the denim and corduroy. My mom and I decided to cut the top with some extra room, not realizing the tank top is already oversized, so at the end we did have to take up the sides because I didn’t like how low cut the armholes were.
Experience sewing on the machine:
This was the most comfortable I have been with sewing on the machine which is great because that means I’m growing. Because the fabric is so lightweight, the fabric would crawl while I was sewing. To prevent this, I pinned the fabric down while sewing panels together. I did have some trouble with the needle and thread while sewing the bottom hem. Some kind of way the thread came out of the needle and I tried for about half an hour to get the thread back through the needle. I honestly could not see the hole on the needle even with my glasses on, so after failing to rethread the needle, I had to call my mom to come help. Thanks, Mom.
I think I love each project more than the last one. I love the versatility of this tank top. The armholes are rather large which will show my bra so I’ll definitely pair it with a sweater, cardigan, or even a blazer.
Putting the Outfits Together
Putting the outfits together was quite easy. So easy, I could have put more outfits together but settled with just a few because I knew I would have a limited time to work with the photographer. I decided on the navy blue pants because the pattern on the pants includes a little gold and I knew it would create a nice professional look. I actually have the same pair of pants in forest green, which I will be pairing the tank top with in the future. Blue jeans always make a nice casual look, so that was a given. I love how well gold pairs with forest green so I opted for the green flannel to give a layered look. Being able to create a look with the denim skirt from my last project was very special to me. I almost forgot about the chocolate jacket, but I’m so glad I didn’t because I love the contrast between the gold and the chocolate. Reminds me of Reese’s Peanutbutter Cups. Lol Fun fact: Reeses was my favorite candy as a child.
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
The Good– Sewing the front and back together went really well, so I’m getting better at sewing in a straight line. Again, learning to sew from my mom is really special to me, so that will always be a positive for me. I’m grateful she is here to help when I need it.
The Bad– When I was preparing to sew the bottom hem, I realized the presser foot was off the machine. I immediately began to panic, so of course, I called my mom and she walked me through reattaching the presser foot. The needle and thread debacle was bad, too. I really could not get the thread back in the needle. It was horrible. I thought the needle was broken. It wasn’t. (face palm)
The Ugly– In my opinion, the bottom hem of the tank top is ugly. Sewing it was when I lost the thread from the needle and the debacle began.
The last project set a bar that I did not meet. However, this tank top was the most challenging project yet and I was able to see it through to the end. I think it turned out great, but I want to push myself to sew all of the next project. Although the needle and thread created conflict for me, my confidence in my sewing abilities is still continuing to grow as I learn more with each project. I know the best is yet to come. Stay tuned for my future projects and check out my youtube channel here.
Things I Learned:
What a simple facing is
How to use simple facing for a clean finish
Use zig-zag stitches for raw edges
Still needs work:
Removing and replacing the presser foot
Threading the needle
How to stitch/sew by hand
I’d like to make another Antero tank top because my mom helped A LOT with this one, I want more experience with the pattern on my own.