This tutorial was part of the Customizing with Oliver + S series on the Oliver + S blog. If you've read my blog for any length of time, it's obvious that I have a soft spot for the Oliver + S patterns. And I've taken quite a few and "customized" them to suit the look I was going for.
Gymboree had a girls' clothing line a couple of years ago titled "Santorini Sweetie". One of the tunics in a blue print with a white facing around the neck stood out to me. I loved the way the white facing looked against the blue. I pinned the top to my Inspiration for Children's Apparel board on Pinterest and there it sat.
In the meantime, a blog that I follow called Sew Together had a post entitled: Beyond the Basics: Colour Pop Tunic Tutorial in which Maryanne shows how to add a facing with an opening to the front of a basic bodice. Since I never did find a pattern that was exactly what I wanted, the tutorial was a great starting point. I went digging through my patterns and decided to use the Oliver + S 2+2 pattern in a size 4 as my basic bodice.
The first thing I needed to do was eliminate the gathers in the front. I took the front bodice piece of the 2+2 top and folded the pattern 1/2" from the facing fold line.
This then became my front pattern piece and I cut one out on the fold. I went ahead and prepared the back of the blouse per the 2+2 instructions and joined the front and back at the shoulders.
Instead of using my pattern pieces to make the facing template, I worked off of my joined together front and backs.
1. I laid my sewn together front and backs out flat.
2. Then, I placed tracing paper over the neckline and traced the opening. I measured and marked 1 1/2" from the the neckline and drew my center point (3 1/2" down and 3 inches wide). I added 1/2" to the ends for my seam allowance.
3. I chose to fold my facing pattern piece in half to make sure it was even. If you need to trim or adjust, now is the time to do it. I cut out 2 facings on the fold.
4. Pin the 2 facings right sides together.
Now it's time to sew together your facing pieces. Stitch the outside edges with a 1/4" seam and the ends with a 1/2" seam. I shortened my stitch length from a 2.5 to a 2 to ensure the strength of the seam. Press, trim seam allowances to 1/8", notch curves if needed, clip corners, and then turn to the right side and press once again. If you have a point turner, it'll come in handy for smoothing out the curves. This is what you should have....
Now it's time to mark the stitching line for the opening. You'll do this on whichever side you want to be your wrong side. I placed the end of the opening approximately an inch above the bottom.
Sew along the neckline (2 stitch length and 1/4" seam allowance) and around the stitching line (marked in blue). Press, clip curves if needed, and trim seam allowances to 1/8" (photo A). Turn the facing to the top's right side, press again, match the ends of the facing with the button placket, and pin into place (photo B). Topstitch along all the edges rolling the seam slightly to the wrong side at the neckline and opening (photo C). Press again.
The other modification I did was to bind the edge of the sleeves. I cut 2 bias strips 1 1/2" wide and folded one long end 3/8" to the wrong side. The unfolded edge was sewn right sides together to the sleeve edge with a 3/8" seam allowance. I trimmed the SA and folded/pressed the binding to the wrong side. Then topstitched close to the edge from the right side.
The finished top(s)...
BK in the original modified 2+2
And I couldn't resist making one more using Lisette Lawn!