Must-Have Top For Fall: The Crossover Top


People StyleWatch September wrap and crossover tops
People StyleWatch for September says wrap or crossover tops are “so of-the-moment and flatter everyone.”

Pick up any fashion magazine these days and you’re bound to find a wrap top on this season’s must-have list. The crossover style of wrap top is super-popular right now, and you can easily make your own version with McCall’s M6991.

McCall's M6991 crossover or wrap top.
McCall’s M6991 crossover or wrap top.

Scroll down for a couple of tips for sewing this pattern. But first, some inspiration:

Top by Young, Fabulous & Broke,
Crossover top by Young, Fabulous & Broke,
Crossover top by MICHAEL Michael Kors, Nordstrom
Crossover top by MICHAEL Michael Kors, Nordstrom
Top by 10 Crosby Derek Lam, Neiman Marcus
Crossover top by 10 Crosby Derek Lam, Neiman Marcus

Sewing Tips for M6991:

  • VERY IMPORTANT: Choose a fabric that is the same on BOTH sides. The front pattern piece is a single pattern piece that is twisted. If you use a fabric with a right side and a wrong side then half of your bodice will show the wrong side. You can’t use a charmeuse, for example, with a shiny side and a matte side, unless you’re going for a half shiny, half matte look. Examine your fabric thoroughly in daylight and from all directions to make sure there’s not even a subtle difference in nap or sheen.
  • Fabrics that work well: crepe, georgette, jersey, washed silk, chiffon. Go for something with a gentle drape. If you dropped your fabric on the floor it should fall into a soft puddle.
  • Make a muslin first of just the front piece. We did our best with the instructions but when you have a large pattern piece that you have to do strange things to it—like twist it—it’s best to walk through it first with a muslin. Cheryl, one of our designers, said she struggled a little bit sewing her first version of this top, but that her subsequent versions went together in a flash. She recommends playing first with a muslin of the front pattern piece.
  • We include a fold-over self facing on the front pattern piece. If you’re an intermediate or advanced sewer who is used to making pattern modifications, you can eliminate the facing and use a narrow hem instead. Just make sure you add the hem allowance to the facing edge.
  • Omit the button if you plan on wearing this top over a cami.
  • You can also omit the yoke back facing if you want. Just clean-finish the seams using your preferred method.
  • If you don’t want the dropped back hem as we show in version B, then cut your pattern on the lines indicated for version A.
  • UPDATE: I just made View D of the pattern, the one with the shawl collar. FYI, it runs big! I could have gone down a size or two, though I think it looks good when it’s a little blousey.

I am currently sewing version D of this pattern, a wrap top with a shawl collar, but I want to make this crossover top too. What do you think of the crossover top style? Does it work for you?

Summer, Must You Go So Soon?


I know, we technically still have a few more days of summer left. But once we get past Labor Day here in the US and all the kiddos go back to school, it feels like another summer streaked past us before we even knew it was here. Sigh.

To cheer us up, let’s look at some photos—a mashup of #mancandymonday and #throwbackthursday. In 1978 we traveled to Antigua to shoot these photos for Vogue Patterns Magazine. Love it. Scroll down for more photos.

Miscellaneous stuff:

  • Been reading all your blog post comments as have many other members of the McCall’s team. You guys give helpful feedback; please keep it up.
  • Planning a Pinterest contest; details to come soon.
  • What do you think of the Ralph Rucci coat pattern (V1419) for a sewalong? There seems to be the most reader support for that pattern. If you want to sew a coat but not that particular pattern, check out a new Craftsy class that teaches you how to sew Vogue Patterns coat V9040.
  • Anyone going to the American Sewing Expo in September? We’ll be there in booth #420; please stop by and say hello!
  • We’re also sponsoring the Sewing Party on November 8. Read more about this cool sewing event here.
  • So glad you liked our Fall Collection video! Planning another one as we speak.

Spread from a 1978 Vogue Patterns Magazine issue

Spread from a 1978 Vogue Patterns Magazine issue

Spread from a 1978 Vogue Patterns Magazine issue

Spread from a 1978 Vogue Patterns Magazine issue

Have a great Labor Day weekend and here’s to a fantastic fall together!

Art-Teacher Chic: We’ve Got the Patterns For It

Rachel Comey Sparrow dress
Art-teacher chic: Rachel Comey Sparrow dress

Not too long ago ran a trend piece on what it calls “art-teacher chic.” We read it and thought, hmm, that’s the perfect way to describe the style of some of our patterns.

“Art-teacher chic—loose tunics, big ceramic necklaces, modest shoes—has become the go-to uniform for fashion-y women who are done with overdone.” —

Designers like Rachel Comey (a Vogue Patterns designer), Celine and Prada exemplify this easy, wearable style of dressing.

Celine fall_2014_look_11
Art-teacher chic: Celine top and pants, fall 2014
Art-teacher chic: Tsumori Chisato poncho, available at Bird

If you’re looking for art-teacher chic patterns, check out Lynn Mizono and Marcy Tilton for Vogue Patterns. Katherine Tilton nails the look for Butterick. For even more examples of patterns that exemplify this creative, relaxed style of dressing, check out our new Art-Teacher Chic Pinterest board.

Art Teacher chic Vogue Collage
Vogue Patterns art-teacher style. V1410 by Lynn Mizono is a current bestseller for us.
Art Teacher Chic Butterick Collage
Butterick patterns that meet the art-teacher chic criteria. Katherine Tilton’s B6101 top is another bestseller.

Is art-teacher chic your style? I just got back from a long weekend in Woodstock, NY, where this kind of dressing is de rigueur for women of all ages. Tell us more about your look by leaving a comment here. Thanks!