Self drafted kimono sleeve top

Hello there, I’ve got another self draft to share with you today.

This time, a short sleeved kimono top, a basic shape so I thought it would be simple to draft.  I think it has turned out ok, but wasn’t quite as simple as I had imagined!

Kimono top front 1

To create the pattern, I traced around three different top patterns I’ve made that fit reasonably well (Sewaholic Belcarra, Colette Sorbetto and Simplicity 1693), lining them up so that the waist point was the same for each trace.  Then had a bit of a gut feel attempt at drawing the kimono top pattern (aided by internet pictures to get the basic shape).

Kimono top front 3

The arms didn’t fit at all well when I first tried it on!  They were far too tight around the arms and felt a bit long so I cut about 5cm off and lowered the arm opening by about 10cm.  This meant I didn’t have enough material to create a neat finish all around the arms, but as long as no one inspects my underarms close up this should be fine!

Kimono top back

The fabric is a woven viscose from Fabric Land in Brighton.  Given the boxy style, I definitely think a drapey fabric was required.  I’m not sure if I’d like this top in a solid colour (would want to tweak the arms a bit and perhaps make a bit more fitted first), but with this spotty fabric I think it works quite well.

Kimono top front 2

All in all, I’m quite pleased with this as a first version. There are definitely improvements to be made fit wise, particularly around the arms, but I think they would be worthwhile working on as the simplicity of the style would be great for showing off interesting fabrics.

4 thoughts on “Self drafted kimono sleeve top

  1. Hey I recognise this little baby! It looks fantastic Alex. Love the colour and the fit looks great too.
    On another note entirely – bet you are excited about the new Minion film!!

    1. Thanks for your help with getting the fit right!
      Yes, saw the new Minion film, its cool that Kevin is one of the stars as he was the first minion I made!

  2. Hi Alex
    I’ve been playing with this style for days and I’m about to adjust my cobbled together pattern again by lowering armhole. About to trial my third mockup.
    I’ve been trialing armhole finishes too and, because my end product will be in rayon, I’m thinking I may have to go for making my own rayon bias binding.
    Any thoughts?

    1. Hi Sandy,
      It’s a lovely versatile style so certainly worth persevering with making a pattern that fits you as just as you want 🙂 A self made rayon bias binding would definitely work well for the armhole finish. If you don’t want to go to the effort of making that, then I think a light weight pre-made bias binding would likely work ok too. It depends a bit on the weight and drape of the rayon you are using – the lighter it is, the more inclined I’d be to go with self made.
      I’d love to see how you get on.

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