Appleby Make’s Hayley Ballet Top

Sam Pattern Review 3 Comments


I hope you are keeping safe and healthy in these bizarre circumstances. Hopefully this post will provide you with some light relief, and a little distraction, if you are stuck indoors.

I’m here to show you my latest make, the Hayley Ballet Top. This has been on my list for things to make for some time and it feels good to finally get this done. The Hayley Ballet Top is a versatile pattern that can be made from a few different fabrics, including knits or wovens.

I’ve got a couple of wrap tops from other patterns that are designed to be made from woven fabrics, so I thought that this time I would try a knit fabric. After a quick look in my stash I found this stretch velvet fabric that had been left over from another make a couple of years ago. I had forgotten how evil this fabric is! If I had remembered, I wouldn’t have used it as it was less than ideal.

The fabric is a stretch velvet fabric, the back of which resembles swimming costume fabric. It’s super stretchy but it also shows off every lump and bump imaginable! I took advice off The Wardrobe Architect, who has also made this pattern in a knit fabric, and sized down for this make.

Because I made a knit top, as opposed to a woven top, I changed the order of construction somewhat. I started by finishing all my edges with my overlocker, but all other sewing was completed on my sewing machine. I started sewing by stabilising the shoulder seams and sewing them together.

This then enabled me to sew the sleeves in flat, rather than setting them in like the instructions tell you. Then it was a matter of sewing the side seams and arm seams in one – not forgetting to leave a gap for the tie. Doing it this way made the process very quick indeed.

The only thing is the facing. I have a real issue with these don’t I? It’s not as bad as my Olive Blouse but the bouncy fabric really makes it ping out and I find it very difficult to poke it back in. The facing was under-stitched to try and prevent it from peeping out but that made very little difference. I then topstitched about 1.5cm in (you can see that in the photo), and this helped but it’s still difficult to stop it poking out. It takes me about 10 minutes to get this top on and arranged nicely so that the facing is sitting properly and I’m not showing off too much cleavage! Once that’s done it looks great!

Corrine xx

Inspired? Why not think about using stretch velvet for your next project? We’ve picked our favourites below that we think would make a beautiful Hayley Ballet Top. Take your pick!

Top left: My fabrics – Stretch Velvet Nicky Velours – Mustard – £8.95 per metre

Bottom left: Minerva Crafts – Stretch Velvet Navy Blue – £7.99 per metre

Top right: EU Fabrics – Velvet Fabric Spandex Velour – £7.99 per metre

Bottom right: Croft mill – Isabella – £20 per metre

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