Tilly and the Buttons Freya sweater hack with stripe matching tips

Tilly and the Buttons Freya sweater hack with stripe matching success
After hacking the Sew Over It Molly dress pattern to make my Rainbow T-shirt dress, I had just about enough fabric left over to make another pattern. Considering I had bought a 1.5m cut, I feel that getting a dress and a top out of the fabric was pretty good going - I do like it when I feel like I'm getting value for money! I decided to try and see if I could use the Freya pattern from the Stretch! book by Tilly and the Buttons, and there was not only enough, but enough to stripe match too!

Fabric

This top was made with the remnants of my dress and it works very well for both items (fabric available for purchase here, review and what it's like to wear here). I am really drawn to the bright stripes and having worn my t-shirt dress quite a lot already, can also say that it is surviving being worn and washed quite well too.

Update: right now this is sold out! If you want something similar, look for a cotton jersey. Personally, I would head for an Art Gallery Fabric. I used one for my second Agnes sweater and it's so soft; perfect for a tee. If you are making the full Freya, you could also consider a light ribbed knit as well.

Tilly and the Buttons Freya sweater hack with stripe matching success

Pattern and Instructions

This top is made using the Freya sweater and dress pattern from the book 'Stretch! Make yourself comfortable sewing knit fabrics' by Tilly and the Buttons (available here). This is a fabulous collection of patterns for knit fabrics and even if you are used to sewing knits, you will find handy information and tips inside. It is comprehensive and would be especially helpful to anyone starting out sewing. (Check out other posts like this one if you want more details on the book or other patterns).

Tilly and the Buttons Freya sweater hack with stripe matching success

What I found particularly useful for this project were the tips for stripe matching. I had tried to match stripes on my Rainbow t-shirt dress, but somehow, though the stripes could match, they ended up matching with different colours. After consulting Tilly's book, I realised it was because I was using the wrong anchor point for my stripe matching at the cutting out stage.

Tilly and the Buttons Freya sweater hack with stripe matching success

What I did for this top was to use the front armhole notch as an anchor point, lining it up with the orange line on the bodice and the sleeve pieces. This wasn't easy as I was working with a remnant but I just about managed it! I did have to unpick my sewing a few times as no matter how much I tried, I couldn't get the stripes to align exactly, so it's not perfect, but it's close enough for me!

Tilly and the Buttons Freya sweater hack with stripe matching success

The pattern is meant to include a turtle neck feature, which you can see has been left out here. I did actually have this cut out, but wasn't sure if it would work for my purposes. When cutting out, I didn't follow the neckline on the bodice pieces, cutting straight across horizontally from where the shoulders, just in case. (It's the same method I use for slash neck tops, detailed here). I made the pattern up as per instructions apart from the neckline and then pinned it on where it should be and had a look. I didn't go with it, mainly because I had been forced into quite short sleeves with the amount of fabric I could use and it didn't balance well on me. Had I been able to go to the elbow, I probably would have used the turtle neck piece. As it was, I simply adapted the neckline, fixing fusible seam tape to the front, turning under and topstitching in place.

I used a regular sewing machine only for this, leaving seams unfinished, which meant that it only took about half a day to make this top, even with the stripe matching. I would really recommend both the pattern/book and the fabric. They make for an easy sew and a comfortable top that can slot into casual wear really easily. The fit of the pattern is very good (I made the 4 if you are interested), not needing any alterations at all.

Tilly and the Buttons Freya sweater hack with stripe matching success


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Hi, I'm Laura. Welcome to my journeys with modern, feminine dressmaking and knitting; pattern reviews, tips and guides for beginners. I'm a lifelong foodie, so you'll also find some delicious recipes and places to get that foodie fix.
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