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Scrap Happy Knit Tee

In the spring, after we had finished cutting and assembling our knit bundles, there were a few small pieces left over.  We could not throw them away, so they went into the bucket for small knits.  Usually these scraps become contrasting neck bindings, pockets or yokes.  One colorful floral piece was calling my name, however, so I began to consider designs for the irregularly cut end that was about 12” long and 50” wide. There were several other pieces lurking in the knit bucket that looked great with the floral – an ikat print and solids in blue, black, and white.

 

I revisited Carrie’s excellent post about her color block tee.  It inspired me to get out my Tabula Rasa Knit Tee pattern pieces and mess with the scraps to see where they would fit on my pattern.  I did decide I wanted a more symetrical rather than a random block pattern because there was enough going on mixing a floral, a geometric, and several solids.

Posting a blog post in my cross over tee.
Posting a blog post in my cross over tee.

 

The ikat was the perfect size for my side panel and a shortened sleeve pattern fit perfectly on the white chunk.  I decided that if the sleeves were to be white, the black knit was too stark a contrast so I set it aside.  That left the floral and the solid blue for the fronts and backs.  My preference was to place the floral near my face and to break the front and back pattern pieces at the point where the sleeve and side panel come together.  There was plenty of solid blue for the lower blocks.  The irregularity of the floral piece made it impossible to get a full upper back and a full upper front.  I opted to cut the upper back from the largest section and then create a crossover (or faux surplus) neckline in the front.

The pattern pieces with the extension on the right side.
The pattern pieces with the extension on the right side.

 

The pattern work required that I create a full front, V-neck pattern for the floral section.  I created the left side by extending the V-neck across the front all the way to the side seam.  The remaining right shoulder section was extended 1¼” along the cut edge to include the seam allowance.  These new pieces did fit on my fabric, as I had expected.

The new individual pattern pieces
The new individual pattern pieces

Once the pattern was drafted and the pieces were cut, it was quick to sew the top together.

Pinning the neckband onto the top.
Pinning the neckband onto the top.

To construct the crossover top I stitched front to back at the shoulder seams, then applied a scrap strip of ikat for the neck band and serge finished the seam.

Serge finishing the neck edge
Serge finishing the neck edge

Finally, I slid the small right shoulder section into place under the larger left side and anchored it with topstitching.

 

 

 

 

Cross front established
Cross front established and topstitched

I completed the front and back by sewing the floral tops to the lower blue solid pieces, then proceeded to complete the basic Tabula Rasa Tee construction.  The remaining floral scraps were used to finish the edges of the sleeves.

Here is another view, you can see the ikat!
Here is another view, you can see the ikat!

This top has been my go-to top all summer.  It is a cool, colorful and comfortable scrap happy top.  Plus, it is an easy variation that you can draft yourself.  Try it and send us some photos.  We want to post some of your Tabula Rasa Knits on Facebook.  Have you ever made a knit top from scraps?  Share your techniques with us.

Happy Sewing, RAE

8 thoughts on “Scrap Happy Knit Tee

  1. Absolutely love this!

  2. Beautiful Rae!

  3. Stunning Rae. I love it and will use the idea for 3 strays in the “stash.”

    Hope you are well.

  4. Fabulous! What a wonderful variation to pass onto us. Thanks.

    1. thanks everyone for your compliments. looking forward to seeing your tops soon!

  5. Looks so cute on you.

  6. Looks great–not at all scrappy. Love the crossover.

  7. What a wonderful use of odds and ends, and alteration of a pattern. It is lovely. Thank you for giving us the road you traveled to produce this blouse. Good luck on your newest endeavor.

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