(Drafting) Top Pattern #1D: Information

The information covering how to create this sewing pattern is contained on a number of pages – see the menu – these pages these follow on from in each in the menu order. The page you are currently on contains just the description of the garment.

See the Top-001 Series page for an overview of the series (i.e. how the tops are different).

You can follow along and practice patternmaking using free Third Scale Blocks, or you can draft the pattern full size for yourself.

If you do not have a custom block, you can find instructions for how to draft them here: Drafting Blocks.   How to take measurements are covered on these pages: Measuring for Blocks.

If you would prefer to buy a set of Standard Blocks or Slopers, you can buy them on the Purchasing Blocks pages.  Bodice Blocks are $12, Skirt Blocks are $5, Pants Blocks $8 and a Complete Set costs $20.00.  These blocks come in sizes 6 – 22, and you can find a comprehensive list of the measurements for each size in the Measurements for Downloadable Blocks page.


  • Sleeveless top
  • Square or slightly sweetheart neckline
  • Design line across upper bust and across back at bust level
  • Gathers (dart equivalents) in the upper bust design line in the Front
  • Gathers (dart equivalent) and extra fullness in the Back
  • Flaring out at hemline
  • No Center Front or Center Back seams
  • Facing/Lining for the Upper Yoke section, both Front and Back.

Flat & Details

  • Design line at Upper Bust level on both Front and Back Bodice (yokes)
  • Bodice Front has Square/sweetheart neckline
  • Back has a boat neckline with a depth of 1.75-in (4.5cm).
  • Waist dart is moved into the design line and the value is used for gathers
  • Extra ease added to CB Back Bodice and the dart value and extra ease is used for gathers in the design line
  • Hem at hip-line has 6 inches (15cm) ease added (including the extra fullness added in CB)
  • The back and front yokes are lined

Plan of Action

If you are unsure of what a Plan of Action is or how it helps, refer to Dress 001.

How many pattern pieces?

Most of this information is the same as for Top-001B; the only difference between these two tops is that this one has two darts in the waist (for the half block) instead of one in the side seam and one in the waist.

This top has four pattern pieces; the Yoke Front, Yoke Back, Bodice Front, Bodice Back.  The same pattern piece is used for the Yoke Front self fabric and Yoke Front lining, ditto Back Yoke.  However, additional pattern pieces are required for the interfacing on the lining.

  1. Yoke Front (self and lining)
  2. Bodice Front
  3. Yoke Back (self and lining)
  4. Bodice Back
  5. Interfacing Yoke Front
  6. Interfacing Yoke Back

Notes/Plan of Action for creating Pattern Pieces

Things I need to keep in mind, decisions I need to make before drafting the top:

  • I need to determine whether the neckline depth means there will be a gape dart which needs to be moved into the side seam dart.
  • How much do I want to add to the circumference at the hemline?
  • How much of the lining do I want interfaced?  (How heavy or lightweight is the interfacing you will be using?)


  • The neckline DOES require contouring for me; make sure I do this before I draw the yoke design line.
  • I will add at total of 4 inches | 10cm to the circumference at the hemline, distributed evenly between front and back.  This means 1 inch | 2.5cm each to the Front Bodice and the Back Bodice.

Pattern Pieces for interfacing

I don’t use paper to make my pattern pieces for interfacing; I use scraps of fabric. 

Outcome & Notes

This shows the original concept drawing and a photo of me wearing the garment.  Scroll down for some notes about how happy I am with this particular pattern, whether I would use it again, etc.


  • The top is comfortable (as it’s very loose everywhere but around the neckline) and I love wearing it around the house, but there are a few ways I’d make it different and better. (i.e. I wouldn’t make it again as is).
  • I added in some fullness at the CB in the bodice piece (not the back yoke), and it ended up too much fullness there.
  • Because I changed my design at the last minute (chose to put in lining instead of using bias), my straps ended up too thin.  When I say “too thin”, I mean that in two ways.  Firstly it made it too hard to sew, and secondly my bra strap tends to show.
  • When I starting drafting the pattern for this and I moved the side seam dart into the design line, I immediately thought the the pattern would be better with a princess line in the bodice.  I did make another sample pattern out of a piece of leftover fabric, shown below.  The waist dart was not sewn and I gathered it with elastic under the bust.   With the print of the fabric,  in this photo,  it was quite difficult to see that princess seam – I have drawn it on top with a pink line.


I wouldn’t make the top again, nor would I make the variation shown above.  I would try the variation shown in the flat below; the same design line across the upper bust, with the princess line in the bodice front and back, but more fitting and with a button placket.

Credit for the Stock Photo I used to create the Vector Croquis on this page:

Andersonrise from 123RF Stock Photos

Copyright of original (photo) image: andersonrise / 123RF Stock Photo

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