Willow Tank, versions 1 and 2
June 20, 2016
A couple of weeks ago, I decided I needed to sew some clothing right away. This happens to me when I have been dealing with fiddly quilt blocks or need a palette refresher. It seems so satisfying in those moments to cut up large pieces of fabric and sew them back together. Anyhow, I had purchased the Willow Tank Dress pattern by Grainline Studios in the hopes that it would help fill a tank top sized hole in my summer wardrobe. Spoiler alert: it did.
The pattern consists of four pieces - a front, a back and bias strips for the neck and armholes. The sewing is very easy - the directions are clear and concise, plus if you are in any doubt of what to do, there is a sew-along for the pattern that includes bust adjustments and lengthening/shortening instructions. I jumped in without making a muslin because I felt comfortable that I would be a size 12 with the only modification being adding length (2" to be exact).
This worked and then it didn't. My first version (on the left above) was made out of a piece of Nani Iro double gauze that I purchased while in Minneapolis/St. Paul years ago. (The print has been reissued - you can snag it at Miss Matatabi!) I've had it in my stash, waiting for the right pattern as it wasn't big enough to make a skirt or something with sleeves. It's really a miracle that I hadn't cut it up and made a quilt. But back to business...that willow tank fits me pretty well. I didn't make a bust adjustment and I am a C or D cup depending on the bra. The added 2" of length put the hem at the perfect spot and it just skims my hips. The double gauze is soft and floaty and has a little bit of give to it. The second version was sewn the same way - size 12, 2" added for length - but it is a little tight in the bust. I think the difference in fit is down to the fabric choice. The blue floral is a Robert Kaufman lawn and it was a dream to sew up. I love the drape and the weight, but it is a tightly woven fabric that doesn't have the give that double gauze does. I could have gone up a size or done a bust adjustment and had a better fit, but oh well. I will still wear it with the one bra in my drawer that makes it passable.
As I tend to do when I find a pattern I like, I have visions of more, more, more Willow Tanks in my closet. There is even a dress version that I am anxious to try. You can probably guess where this is going...I have ordered more of that delightful Nani Iro double gauze and am hoping to whip a few more of these up as soon as I have two hours to spare.
Also, props to Jane for the photo. I am finally getting the hand of these modeled shots - she gives good direction. ;)
I do that too with patterns I like. This looks really nice on you. Too bad about the blue one. No chance of letting out the side seams in the bust area?
Posted by: Masha | June 20, 2016 at 09:17 AM
Beautiful! Absolutely perfect. Wouldn't change a thing! I do the same thing when I find a pattern I like. I imagine multiple versions. So satisfying when it works out so well. I haven't sewn this yet but your version makes me want to try it.
Posted by: Julie | June 20, 2016 at 12:27 PM
Very Nice Post!
Posted by: Jack | June 23, 2016 at 07:57 AM
Oh, I love that first one!
Posted by: Lisa Clarke | June 24, 2016 at 05:57 PM
Beautiful, Erin! I think my body type is slightly similar to yours and I've just made the wiksten tank which I think you have made in the past. Can you say what the main fit difference is with this one? It looks really flattering. I'm not sure I love how the wiksten fits with my chest size.
Posted by: Sandra Reuston | June 27, 2016 at 12:51 PM
Hi Sandra - I have made the Wiksten tank, but it was for my daughter. I have yet to make her one of these, so I can't really speak to the difference in fit. I do think the Wiksten tank has a lower neckline. Erin
Posted by: Erin | house on hill road | June 27, 2016 at 03:17 PM
you are so stinkin cute!!! and i always love your mad sewing skills! xx
Posted by: leslie | June 27, 2016 at 05:36 PM
I've been thinking about making that tank as well. I especially like the cropped version.
Posted by: Malka | July 01, 2016 at 08:26 AM
That top is just so beautiful and perfect for you.
Posted by: Kim B. | July 17, 2016 at 02:44 PM
Posted by: Anna | July 30, 2016 at 07:29 AM
Been wondering where and how you are, miss your posts.
Posted by: Barbara | August 01, 2016 at 10:12 AM
what a perfect outfit! that top is so flattering on you! :)
Posted by: elizabeth | September 13, 2016 at 12:29 PM
Beautiful top that looks perfect on you. You have amazing sewing skills. If you required fabrics, you can buy it from online wholesaler ribbons cheap from where I use to buy craft material.
Posted by: Carl Brown | July 13, 2017 at 03:23 AM
Posted by: One Click Stores | September 04, 2017 at 02:23 AM