Thursday, November 8, 2012

Knit Jumper

After all the sewing I did for Littleheart for KCWC, i decided to make some things for myself. I need some everyday, fall/winter clothes, and decided to tackle some of my new knit fabric. When I ordered this purple and black stripe fabric (btw - purple is my FAVORITE color!), I already kind of thought I would make a dress or tunic, but I didn't really have a pattern in mind. Then Jen and Autie over at Icandy Handmade started a series called "Basic Bodice Design Series" which is all about making your own dress design starting with a simple bodice. This got me thinking about my striped purple fabric, and I said, hey, why not try it on myself? I have made tons of clothes for Littleheart starting out with a simple bodice pattern and designing the rest myself, but it seems harder to do it on my own clothes. But this is how I made my jumper, and I am pretty happy with the outcome!

For this jumper I used the Collette free pattern called the Sorbetto top. It is a simple, standard bodice that can be used as a base for many different garments. It comes in sizes 0 - 18 , which is so nice. The Sorbetto top has a pleat in the front, which I did not need for my project, so just cut off that extra strip from your pattern before you cut your material.

What you need
2 yards of knit fabric
1/2 yard of lining fabric (I used a lightweight, plain black knit)
1/2 yard of matching cotton fabric
2 matching buttons

Pattern and Cutting

For the strap piece take a piece of paper and draw a rectangle 7.5"/3". Now round off one of the ends, so it looks like this:

Take your Collette Pattern and lay it on a new piece of paper. Trace the bodice, but instead of making it the length suggested, continue all the way down to the length of the dress you would like to have. Do the same for the back and front bodice. Cut each piece on the fold out of your knit fabric.

Now take the Collette pattern and trace it again, this time making it shorter than the original pattern (about 5" under the armhole). Do this for front and back bodice. Cut these two pieces out of your lining fabric. 

Cut two strips of your contrasting cotton fabric, length as wide as your dress piece, width 9".

Cut 4 of the strap pieces out of your cotton fabric.


Make all your darts on the dress pieces and lining pieces according to the Sorbetto pattern.

Sew 2 of your strap pieces, right sides together, all around except for the bottom straight part. 

Trim and flip to the right side. Press. Topstitch around.

Take your front dress piece and pin the strap pieces on, lining up the raw edges, 10 " under the armhole. Sew them in place, using 1/4" seam allowance. 

Sew your side seams of your dress and your lining pieces. When you sew over the strap pieces, be careful, so they stay nice and flat.

Turn your lining piece right sides out and insert into the dress part (which is still inside out). The right sides should be touching each other. Pin the two parts together, lining up the raw edges.

Sew around the armholes and the neckline.

Flip right sides out.

Sew together shoulder seams.

Topstitch around neckline (close to the edge)

Take your two 9" strips and sew them together on the short sides, forming a loop. Now fold them in half on the long side and press. If you have a serger, serge the raw edge of the loop so it will not fray. 

Pull the loop over the bottom of the dress, lining up the raw edges. Make sure the seams of your loop match up with the side seams of your dress.

Sew around the entire bottom.

Flip the strip down and topstitch around.

Sew your buttons to the strap pieces and you are done!

Wear it with a long sleeve shirt underneath and some leggings and you've got yourself a new outfit!

I will be linking up to some of the link parties on this page . 


  1. Good on you for sewing something for yourself, Mira!!! Both the colour and the style suit you. It looks fabulous!!!

  2. Looking good Mira! The buttoned tabs are a great detail.

  3. Hi Mira, I've featured your Knit Jumper today...

  4. I would love for you to share this (or any of your other great ideas) at the link party going on through tomorrow night at ‘Or so she says …’ Hope to see you there!

  5. Such a cute thing to sew for yourself! I really need to try something like this. Right now I mostly sew kids clothes, and once in awhile a skirt for myself. But this makes me want to try a knit jumper. :)

    1. Go for it! My sewing is also mostly for my daughter, but it is really fun to sew for myself too!