The Big Frill


I am trying VERY hard to ignore all the sale emails I am getting from Tessuti and The Fabric Store. One of my new year’s resolutions for the sewing year 2016 was to use up my stash and yesterday I almost gave in and went to The Fabric Store “just to see what they had on sale” but decided I would have to toughen up and stay away. And I did – stay away. It was time to put at least one of my resolutions into action…

I had some snippets of fabric left over from my Positano dress in navy with the white spots from Tessuti and I really hate bits of beautiful fabric lying around. They are so useless and take up too much space in my stash. So it had to go. To good use of course!



I have been eyeing several peplum-style tops over the last couple of weeks, weighing up which style to make and in what fabric. Around the same time I found a picture of a frilled top in a fashion magazine and it was love at first sight. A quick and easy sew on the weekend and de-stash at the same time. I love the huge frill on the mag picture but unfortunately I didn’t have enough fabric to make mine THAT big, so I made it as big as the remnants allowed. Compared to the mag picture, mine looks mini!!

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Pictures show front and back sewn together, frill pieced together, frill gathering and pieced together shoulder strap pieces.

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I didn’t use a pattern, but my usual trial and error process (when I don’t have a pattern) to make this top. I measured the approximate length and width of fabric I would need for the front and back of the top. The back turned out about 2cm narrower than the front due to my restrictions but that was ok. I had to “cut and paste” some of the pieces together to actually have enough bigger pieces to work with to make the frill. Some of them were cut on the bias, so I had to match them up to get them on the grain of the fabric and sewed them together with the tiniest seams I could. I ended up cutting the frill 20cm wide and minus hem and gathering it probably turned out 18cm in length.


For the shoulder straps I really had to piece together lots of very small pieces, which was a bit of a pain, but it paid off in the end and I used every last bit of the fabric! No more left overs! Just another way to seriously de-stash the remnant stash! I just, just had enough to use one last piece for as a headband.

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I put in a loose wide elastic band in the top just to keep it from being too wide and then attached the straps to it with snap fasteners so that I can detach them and wear it without straps as well.


I am always trying to think of how to get the most use out of a garment. So by making it versatile, I know I will wear it more often.



What I love about this kind of sewing, is that this top took me about a day to make in between doing some garden work and other household chores on a Sunday, I have used up fabric that would have otherwise been lost in the remnant stash, you can’t see all the piecing together because of the spots on the fabric and lastly – I love it and will wear it with shorts, skirts, jeans and capri pants – with or without the shoulder straps!



I challenge myself and you and to use up our fabric scraps and make some creative and one-off pieces and not throw away beautiful pieces of fabric. I will be making some more garments from scraps and will keep you posted!



Styling: shorts: Zara, shoes: Zara, sunglasses: Margot by Tom Ford