Hannah Top + Maritime Shorts OR What I Have Been Wearing all Summer


I loved this post from Ada Spragg because I, too, find that things I sew generally fall into one of three (I’m adding to her list) categories: 1. Love to make 2. Love to look at 3. Love to wear. We all know there’s a fourth category (4. Cried making it, can’t look at it, nope nope nope never wearing it), but let’s take a walk on the sunny side of the street, shall we?

So, yes, there are things you get a kick out of seeing come together, things that send a fuzzy little tingle up your spine when you see them hanging in your closet, and things you find yourself wanting to put on every morning or whenever it is you realize you’re hungry enough to get out of bed.

Of course, the best feeling is when, you, the sewing reference librarian that you are, find you have to cross list something in multiple categories. Like, dang, I had a blast making this corduroy jumpsuit AND I look like a fly honey? Better make some room in the ‘ol card catalog!

IMG_7795I’ll tell it on the mountains that Salme’s Hannah Top and Grainline’s Maritime Shorts had me doing the Dewey Decimal dance a la Parker Posey in Party Girl. This combination has become my summer uniform–I’ve now made three hannah tops, four maritime shorts and they’ve cemented their spot in all three categories. Love to make, love to look at, love to wear.  Lookin’ good, feelin’ good.

Maritime Shorts: IMG_7826Fabric:

The fabric I used is best described as 60’s tablecloth. Because I can be a ‘creative’ eater when I’m in a rush, it has at times served as a modern day tablecloth. Wipes down great! It’s a mystery find from our local Jomar, a lightweight canvas with a slightly waxy coating. The print makes me so happy, I wish I had bought more of this to make a little shift from. I used a navy and white striped lining fabric for the interior of the pockets.

Pattern alterations:

I couldn’t resist adding piping to the pocket opening. We taught this pattern at Butcher’s as one of our summer workshops last month and most of our students ended up adding piping to their pockets too. They came out freaking adorable. You can check out our instagram for a few examples. You could also add piping to the waistband.

If you know this pattern, you can see that the most dramatic change is that I’ve taken the pattern from a front fly closure to a side invisible zip. This was just a personal preference because I don’t tend to like the extra bulk that a front fly adds to that area of my waist. I prefer the flat front that comes with a side zip. It also happens to be a quicker sew and I think a side zip fits the retro flair of the fabric. It should be noted that we had several students in our workshop who did the fly front and they all came out A++, the pattern instructions are very clear and typical Grainline quality.

To change to a side closure, I located the center front of one of the front waistband pieces and used that to cut on the fold, creating one front waistband piece instead of two.

Fit and pattern notes:  

Sizing: As usual, I graded out one size from waist to hips. Almost everyone who made these in our workshop decided that they would go down a size the next time they made them. I also did this and had a better fit.

Length: These bad boys are on the shorter side, so it wouldn’t hurt to add an inch or two when you cut and go from there.  I did not ending up changing the length in the end (I’m 5’5″ for reference), but several people in our workshop did and were happier for it.

Pockets:  The pockets are quite roomy and luxurious, like a break lounge for your hands . However, when I sit, the bottoms of the pockets peak out from my hem.  This was standard for everyone who made the shorts with the original hem length. I would shorten them next time, easy fix.

Hannah TopIMG_7822Fabric:

A couple times a year I go to Mood and gorge myself.  This lace is a result of my last trip, where I rode the elevator up with Swatch and took sneaky celebrity photos of him from behind.  I was too shy to ask for a photo with him (he seemed busy), but boy do I have a lot of inappropriate dog butt photos on my phone. The lining is a white rayon from a local store, Maxie’s Daughter on fabric row.

I had never worked with this sort of lace before and I kind of worked myself up about it, diving into the disappointingly small world of lace sewing recommendations online.  In the end, the only thing I really had to do was to put some masking tape under the needle on the throat plate so the narrow bits of lace didn’t get caught underneath.

Pattern alterations:

I’ve made other versions of this top without any modifications other than grading out at the hips and it was thumbs up all around (just REMEMBER this pattern does NOT include seam allowance).  However, the nature of the lace I was working with necessitated several changes.  This pattern has a combined neck/armhole facing which I had to change to a full lining because of the open weave of the lace.

The pattern also has a center back seam with a keyhole closure.  Didn’t want a seam in the lace at the back so changed it to a little button closure on one of the shoulders.  You could do this on both, but I liked how doing one shoulder offsets the symmetry of the lace pattern.

I also didn’t want to sew darts in the lace, so I rotated the darts out of the bodice.

Fit and notes:

For me, this was a rare fit-right-out-of-the-box pattern.  I made a muslin but didn’t end up needing to make any changes fit-wise.

Crop top alert!  This pattern would make a great crop top if you shortened the hem.  I have such plans.  Big such plans.  Most of my skirts and pants now are high waisted and I’m excited about a cropped length giving me more wardrobe options!




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