Ballard Top Remix
Today I’m sharing a different take on the Ballard Top pattern from Straight Stitch Designs. Kimberly is celebrating Straight Stitch Designs’ one year anniversary, and is having a fun Remix the Stitch tour to go along with it! Kimberly is a fellow Seattle-ite, and I’m lucky enough to call her a have gotten to hang out with her a couple of times, and I can tell you that she is just as great as her patterns are. Oh, and there’s a fun giveaway at the end of this post!
I’ve been wanting some new dresses for fall, and decided to turn the Ballard Top into one of those dresses. I had the perfect fabrics picked out from my stash (you may have seen a pic of them on Instagram), but unfortunately I made a cutting error on the black and white herringbone fabric that I was so excited to use for the skirt portion, and had to change my plan. Luckily, I happened to have another herringbone fabric in my stash (when you’re addicted to making Schoolboy Vests one can never have too much herringbone on hand), and although I’m still disappointed about the black and white, I do love the navy blue with the mustard yellow.
The mustard came from the L.A. Fashion district, and I also used it recently this skirt. I guess it’s just meant to be paired with navy :). The navy was ordered from Fabric.com a little over a year ago.
To turn the Ballard Top into a dress, I knew I wanted a closer fitting bodice than the pattern intends. I sized down, basing my size off of the finished measurements rather than my body measurements.
I also obviously shortened the bodice, adding enough seam allowance so that I could make a casing with it (I used the same method as in this dress that I recently made). I love to keep a roll of elastic (affiliate link) on hands at all times so I never have to run to the store. Nothing better than shopping from your own stash, and buying elastic by the roll is one of my favorite ways to save money while sewing – you’ll spend a fraction of the cost you’d spend per yard buying in small packages.
After a little guesswork (the mustard fabric is seriously unpredictable stretch-wise), I cut the back on a fold instead of as two pieces that normally create the open back.
Because of the large amount of stretch in the knit and the weight of the herringbone suiting, I made sure to use clear elastic in the neckline and shoulder seams. If you’ve never used clear elastic before, you should definitely try it! I love the security it gives to a seam.
I have to say that this is probably one of the most comfortable dresses I’ve made for myself. I love the soft knit in the bodice, and the stability of the woven skirt. I’d love to make a similar style in a maxi length next!
Be sure to follow along with the rest of the tour, and don’t forget to enter the giveaway below – there are some reeaaalllly great prizes!
Tuesday, September 8th: Meg Cookin’ and Craftin’ | Jennifer Ginger Peach Studio
Wednesday, September 9th: Ajaire Call Ajaire | Heidi Handmade Frenzy | Stacey Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts
Thursday, September 10th: Melissa Rebel & Malice | Annika Näh-Connection | Abby Sew Much Ado
Friday, September 11th: Katie It’s Hard to Hear Up Here | Jane Buzzmills | Lisa Mabey She Made It
Saturday, September 12th: Elena Randomly Happy | Allie Indiesew | Jess If Only They Would Nap
Monday, September 14th: Jaime Made By Jaime | Lauren BASTE + GATHER | Sara Made by Sara
Tuesday, September 15th: Audrey Skirt Fixationy | Teri Fa Sew La | Hayley Welcome to the Mouse House
Wednesday, September 16th: Emi Just Add Fabric | Rachael Imagine Gnats | Teresa Dandelion Drift
Thursday, September 17th: Kaysie | KZJO’STUDIO Rita Conversas de Hermanas | Stephanie Swoodson Says
Friday, September 18th: Andreia In a Manner of Sewing | Nienke Pienkel | Abbey Sew Charleston
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I love the pictures. It looks like such a comfy dress.
My biggest complaint is usually I see hair instead of details on the shirt or top. (Not just you, I just was looking at a RTW shirt online and all I saw was hair instead of details.) It is hard to not see details. Those details may convince me to purchase a top/shirt/pattern.
Thanks Kristie! And I have to tell you, as I was editing my photos, I was actually wishing I had gotten a better close up of the top of the dress – the gather details are one of my favorite things about the pattern! Darn unruly hair ;).
Abby! This is so beautiful! I love those colors together too. I can’t wait to show my remix of this pattern too.
Thank you Audrey! I’m excited to see your version!
I super love this version – it’s comfy without being frumpy – just what I’m looking to make for fall. Great idea!
Thanks so much Jaime! It really is super comfortable!
Beautiful!! Looks great on you. And funny, but I just bought two fabrics in those exact colors to pair together for my daughter! LOVE that.
Ooh yay! Can’t wait to see what you make, Michelle!
Great job on this remix Abby! I love seeing what you come up with every post.