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The colour blocked top from the GBSB 2016

A how do I do that post

I love the colour block dress from the Great British Sewing Bee book From Stitch to style, but before I invested in the fabrics I wanted to try out the top first in fabric left over from other projects

This top was made in some Gallery Fabric from,  the fabric is on the web site on this link Skopelos Chora from Art Gallery fabrics

The top is amazing don't you think and can be made fairly quickly.
 This tutorial shows you how to do an all in one facing.

The pattern is in the book "from stitch to style" and is the 2016 Great British Sewing Bee book

The top pattern is a hack made from the dress pattern

This is the dress which is fabulous and I cannot wait to make it. I think like a lot,of sewers I do not have many plain fabrics in my stash so I will be looking to rectify that soon!

If you have used a pattern sheet before which has multiple patterns printed in it you will know what to expect. You need to identify each pattern piece for the garment you are making and trace the piece off in your size transferring all pattern markings. I use a roll of baking paper for these projects as it is narrow enough to handle, cheap and long lasting, however you can purchase dressmakers tracing paper if you prefer.  Jaycotts have two options on this page  Tracing paper and you can choose between sheets of paper or buy it in a roll.

You will need to find something to weight your tracing paper onto the pattern sheets. I make my collection of piggy banks earn their pennies by using them as weights for all sorts of sewing projects. Trace each shape out, mark the grain line and all fitting points numbering each piece as you go.

When it comes to cutting your fabric out PLEASE do not ever cut a slash into the fabric to mark the matching triangles. Cut around them please. It takes a bit longer but by doing this you preserve the full width of the fabric piece. Imagine you needed to let your seam out - you have lost valuable fabric by cutting into the fabric, as much as 1/4" each seam so please don't do it.

Join the upper front pieces to the centre strip and add the lower strip, neatening the seams as you go.
Join the lower front pieces together and add them to the bodice front as well.

Iron on some lightweight interfacing to your facing pieces,  Light weight interfacing of course if you are using a heavier fabric you may need to adjust the weight of the interfacing. A word of caution, cheap interfacings are a waste of money so do invest in a good quality one.
Another tip which will protect your ironing board, is to use a piece of oven protector when pressing on your interfacing,  that way all your little melted bits (which we all get from time to time ) will peel off the oven protector and not spoil your ironing board cover.

Join the shoulder seams on both the interacting and the garment. Neaten the lower edge of the facings too, press the seams open.
Stitch the facing to the garment right sides together around the neck opening and sleeve openings

You will end up with this where the facings are attached at the neck and armholes. Press.
Another tip. When you are told to clip into the curves on something and turn it right sides out. Stop. Dont you think the edge looks somehow uneven?
Take your pinking shears Fiskars pinking shears and cut the seam allowance away close to the stitch line, if the fabric is bulky then layer the seam allowances .Press.
When you turn the garment the right side out you will have a lovely crisp edge! Clever!

How do I turn my garment to the right side you might be asking? It's easy,  attach a safety pin to the bottom of the back and thread it through the facing and pull the whole back through the opening to the front.

Once you see the opening created by sewing the facing in place you will understand fully what to do.

This is the safety pin and the left back emerging from the front interfacing.
Do this on both sides then give it a good,press, I insert my sleeve roll into the armhole to get a flat edge.

You now need to insert an invisible zip. I use these clear invisible zips, I just like them.    Transparent invisible zips
Press the back and push the facing up out of the way.

You will be neatening the back facing after you have inserted the zip.

 I attach my zip with this Incredible product, PRYM WONDER TAPE it's a bit,like double sided sellotape  but it is narrow adpnd intended to be used when sewing to temporarily hold two pieces of fabric together
I use it to hold my zip in place whilst I stitch it.  It has to be one of my favourite products.
You need to use an invisible zipper foot by the way. Machine feet if you are not sure which foot fits your machine do give a ring on 01244 394 099 and they will advise you.

Fold the facing back down and neaten the inside, slip stitching the facing to the zip tape,  being careful not to get too close to the teeth.
Overlock the hem and turn it up.  Or you can do an invisible hem.

And here it is finished, the silver pull on the zip looks lovely with the white of the fabric.

The black bands look great, picking out the black in the fabric print

It looks very complicated, but so long as you stitch everything together in order it is very easy to make.

And here I am wearing it for the first time today!
My only gripe with the pattern sheets is that it is not always easy to identify which,piece you need and I wish they would have stuck to one colour for each pattern,  as it is everything is rather haphazard.

It's a lovely top, and a great way to use up leftover fabrics.

I hope that you enjoyed reading this post. 

Happy sewing

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