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A boxy top in cloud-like cotton | A Guest blog post by Naureen

Hi, I’m Naureen from @sewthreadyforit. I’m a relatively new sewist, my first love is actually crochet but I have been meaning to learn how to sew properly for a while so I decided to take advantage of this strange lockdown to learn how to sew and I have to admit I’m in love! I am having lots of fun discovering all the possible fabric and pattern combinations. My mind is blown by what it's possible to create with some concentration, time and tutorials. I’ve already sewn my way though at least 40 garments including dresses, tops, shirts and even my first pair of trousers!

Today I’m here to talk to you about a gorgeous double gauze gifted to me by the lovely Maria.

It was my first time sewing with double gauze, so I honestly had no idea what to expect, the fabric is so unbelievably soft, it feels like clouds! The fabric is constructed by 2 layers of very soft gauze tacked together, and felt very soft to the touch, having now worn the final item I can also confirm that it feels very soft against the skin.

I started by giving the double gauze a good wash in the washing machine and drying it on the balcony.

There was no colour leakage (I always add a swatch of white cotton to the machine to check) and no real shrinkage that I could notice. I decided not to iron it as the fabric has a crinkle effect; I didn't want the effect to iron out.

In terms of pattern I decided to make the Ceilo Top by Closet Core Patterns, previously known as Closet Case Patterns. I hadn't made this pattern before, but I had been meaning to try it for ages after seeing many gorgeous versions on Instagram #cielotop and was delighted to discover that Maria had it in her shop :) I have been looking for a woven top pattern with set in sleeves and which does not sew up too boxy this pattern from #closetcorepatterns fits the bill perfectly.

I decided to go for view A, the top version with short sleeves. I have subsequently made view B with the billowing sleeves, I have to admit that version wasn't for me!

Not wanting to cut the pattern on the double gauze straightaway I decided to make a wearable toile using some basic black cotton. I made a size 12 (rather than a 14) as there was a lot of ease in the pattern and this actually fit my frame well on the first try. I did have to make a gaping back neckline adjustment, this is normal for me, but that was all. One thing to note, this is a very cropped pattern, I am 5ft 1’ so this hit my hip perfectly, but if you are taller you may want to lengthen depending on the fit you need. Now I was ready to cut out the double gauze

Cutting the pattern out was really easy, especially as I had made a toile and the required adjustment on the pattern pieces. Once I had pinned my pattern pieces down the fabric didn't slip at all, I have been using a lot of rayon and viscose so far so this fabric felt very well behaved in comparison.

In terms of notions, there are not many required for this pattern, I used a basic matching thread and a size 80 needle, to be honest I’m still learning about needles and thread so it's all a bit of guesswork for me, however this combination seemed to work really well with this fabric.

I tested the stitch on a swatch. I have a very basic Janome machine, I set my thread tension to 3, my stitch length to 2.5 and width to 5, this is the usual setting for cotton for me and it worked really well on the double gauze.

The fabric is 2 layers of very soft gauze tacked together, so under the presser foot you have 4 layers of fabric, but it does not slip or feel thick, it just feels soft.

The needle passed through the fabric easily and the fabric held together well.

The fabric sewed up really easily, it felt really soft under the presser foot. I was a bit nervous when pressing the bust darts (which come out of the armscye in this pattern) and seams as I was concerned that the crinkles in the gauze would iron out but this actually did not happen. The sleeve on this pattern has a fold up cuff and I decided that I would hand stitch the cuff into place rather than topstitch as the pattern suggested. I didn't want to break up the soft look of the sleeve with a line of stitching.

This fabric really was a joy to sew, here are some photos of me in the finished top, I’m not sure why I look so serious, maybe because it was 45 degrees on the balcony !!

NOTE: I haven't washed it again yet but it definitely seems like it will not need much ironing which is a bonus in my book!

ThreadWerk: Thank you so much Naureen for sharing this awesome top and the detailed steps of sewing with the fabric and using the pattern. In the past, I have heard a lot of people asking for Double Gauze as it is super light and soft fabric - perfect for our weather - but also great for baby/kids clothes. At the moment I only have the fabric that Naureen used and one plain navy Double Gauze. If you are looking for more colours and prints, please let me know.

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