Sewing: the summer boxy top

It started last summer. Actually, I have been saving this post from last summer too, I know, much of a blogger I am not. But the madness continues: I keep making and wearing these easy boxy tops that have become almost a uniform. Most of them from recycled materials too, I realize now.

Last summer I made (and photographed) these three you can see here. The two top ones were made from old curtains. When we first moved into our house, I ordered linen online and made curtains for every room. I replaced them almost everywhere by now, and I am using the fabric for other things. The bottom, navy blue top is made from a length of fabric I found at the thrift store, for about three dollars.

These are the most comfortable, easy to wear and easy to make tops I have ever had the pleasure of having in my closet. I’m not a good seamstress: I’m most afraid of (bad at) cutting and sewing the shoulder curves of blouses. But these tops have a dolman sleeve (not too loose, though). So for these tops I copied the pattern from an older blouse (which I might have even bought originally for the exact reason that I could copy its pattern).

patterntopsummerSometimes I don’t even trace any pattern or measure anything—I just cut something similar to this shape. It usually turns out okay anyway, it’s that easy.

summertops2My favorite of the tops I made last year is the lighter colored one, which is of a heavier linen weight. I probably wear it once a week. Here it is below:

These tops work best with jeans or other more tailored pants. I don’t like them as much with linen or lightweight pants, although that works too for very hot days or beach outings. I do wear them over maxi dresses too (the more lightweight of the tops, which is also shorter, work great like that).

summertops4I wear this navy blue one the least, because of the color. First of all, all my clothes are these days either black or white (off-white) and this is navy—doesn’t feel right. Then, since my bottoms are always either black or blue (as in jeans), it doesn’t create a lot of contrast in the outfit, so I’m not crazy about it. If I ever get some light grey jeans, which I’m kind of looking for, I think it will look great with those.

There is also a dress-version of this pattern (just longer and curved a little back toward the hem, for a bit of a cocoon effect) which I wear for the beach, although my husband says that I look like I’m from a cult. Whatever. What’s so bad about that, right?

This year I made two more of these tops: one light blue, from another piece of linen fabric found at the thrift store, and one ivory colored, from a silk-cotton blend fabric that I had made into a sling for the baby three years ago and maybe carried him in that twice.

And just to contradict myself, this is in no way exclusively a summer top; of course I made one or two of these for cold weather also, to be worn over long-sleeved tees or dresses, instead of a cardigan.


It’s too much already, but I have plans for more. This might be the only thing that I can sew properly and I’m getting better at it, so I think I’ll go on. And on. Nobody stop me. It doesn’t hurt that I like the look a lot, and it’s still kind of in this summer, I think—I’m not that much of an expert. Doesn’t really matter, since this is really it for me and I’ll wear this style forever and ever. It’ll be my signature. My uniform.  And we’ll walk together, hand in hand, forever, until the end of the world.

Or until I get bored, whichever comes first. (Boredom will most likely come first, but for the purpose of this post, let’s stay with the forever and ever.)


  1. A new reader here… I am Lakshmi. More importantly, would you make one of these for me? 🙂 They are so pretty. I am not sure if I love the fabric or the color or the cut the most. Very elegant.

    Looking forward to reading all your posts.

    • Hi Lakshmi! These are really easy to make, I swear. You can’t do no wrong. Just try it with any piece of fabric you have on hand, if you feel crafty one day. I promise full and complete success!?

      • Hehe, I am the person who recruited my Dad to do my school craft projects. So, the idea of tackling this top… hmm, intimidating. But never say never, I guess.:)

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: