floral blouse | Simplicity 1106

I wanted a quick top out of a rayon challis I picked up on clearance at JoAnn’s recently (seriously, I’ve found some great fabrics there lately!). I was originally going to make something a little more detailed, but the heat and humidity has zapped all the energy outta me. Instead, I decided to sew up a simple kimono sleeve top using Simplicity 1106. There’s nothing groundbreaking or earth shattering about this pattern, it’s just a nice, simple top.


I made view D, which has a front pocket and cute cutout detail in the back. However, I omitted the cutout because I was afraid it would dip below my bra. I meant to measure the cutout so I could see for future reference but I’ve already folded all the tissue up and put it away… oops.


I always seem to have a problem with tops being too big on top, so I gambled and traced off an XS at the neckline and bust (I measured at the top of the S range), then graded out to the M for the hem. My shoulders may border on the narrow side (I think? Not sure what the standard is for shoulder width though), and the XS turned out to be perfect. The fit through the hip was a little more fitted than I had anticipated, but that’s partially due to the length of the top, which I cut down. I took 2″ off the hem, and 2.5″ off at the side seams to give it a little more of a shirttail. I think this shortened length is good for either tucking in or leaving out.


The top isn’t actually tight around my hips, I just have the front tucked in this picture.

I know most people (it seems) have a real hate for facings, but I was pleased to find that that is the method used by this pattern. Of course you could always sub a bias facing if that’s your jam, or if your fabric is on the sheer side. I top stitched the facing at 1/2″ to give it a subtle “design feature” element.


Overall I’m pleased with this top, though I wish I would have paid more attention when cutting! I managed to get the only dead space of the print front and center, with the brightest flowers cutting into the neckline. Meh. The pattern placement on the back looks great, so I’m really bummed that I didn’t get similar placement on the front. Live and learn!


I should mention that my shorts are another modified Thurlow made in linen. I loved my first pair so much, that I quickly cut out a second pair, and both have been in constant rotation!

—lisa g.

34 thoughts on “floral blouse | Simplicity 1106

  1. Ebi Poweigha says:

    Really pretty top! I think the front looks good — better to have those busy flowers drawing attention to your face than … well, the other main attraction. 😉

  2. Tine says:

    I completely agree with Ebi – I think the pattern placement is very nice and subtle, in fact, and works well for the front of the top. I love the print and the pattern together, it’s beautiful!

    • lisa g says:

      Thank you! I just got hung up on the print placement, but it doesn’t seem nearly as bad in the photos as it did in my head! It’ll totally get worn all the time anyways.

  3. crab and bee says:

    I’ll admit to hating facings but I like your idea of top-stitching them down. They just get so squirrely! Great top, this is exactly the kind of thing I want to be wearing during summer.

    • lisa g says:

      Yes! Top stitching them down is a great way to go. That or use an all-in-one facing that connects to the armholes… they’re really not so bad! And yes, I love this shape for summer also… breezy and not at all constraining!

    • lisa g says:

      Thank you! Glad I went with such a simple shape—it’s perfectly breezy for dealing with the heat. And nothing says summer like a good pair of linen shorts!

  4. Masha says:

    Cute top! I know it’s simple, but I love the fit on your shoulder and upper back in particular – the way it hangs there is so flattering. The pattern placement looks good to me – the floral is so busy that I don’t think I would have noticed the “dead space” if you hadn’t mentioned it. And even noticing it, it looks good.

    • lisa g says:

      I think the back yoke is what gives it such a nice shape—it really makes a difference! And I’m glad the print placement isn’t as bad as I had first thought. Thank you!

  5. Elle says:

    Nice top! Love those flowers. I’m fond of facings myself. I like the finished look and the bit of structure they give. Beside under stitching, I sometimes just stitch in the ditch at shoulder seams.

    • lisa g says:

      Yay! Someone else who is pro-facing! I also stitch them down at the shoulder and/or side seams when I don’t want any top stitching; it’s an easy way to keep them in check. Thank you!

  6. Wendy says:

    Love your top! The first adjustment I always have to make is the narrow shoulder adjustment, it’s an easy one to do and makes a huge difference.

    • lisa g says:

      Thank you! When you narrow the shoulders, do you just shave off the outer edge or do you slide the whole shoulder over? Most of the information I’ve found has you do the former… I suppose it depends on the pattern?

    • lisa g says:

      I think I’ve come to the conclusion that I just don’t like regular set-in sleeves for summer tops. Kimono sleeves are so much breezier! Thank you 🙂

  7. Carolyn says:

    What a great summer top! I can’t believe you got this fabric at JoAnn’s. I don’t have one easily accessible to me so really don’t know what they’ve been carrying these days, but it’s great to hear that the selection seems to be improving while keeping the low prices. And I agree with the others about the print placement on the front – I love the flowers right at the neckline!

  8. A says:

    I liked your shirt so much I looked at the pattern, but view D has a cut-out in the back. What made you decide to skip the cut-out and did you just use a ruler and connect the line to fill it in?

    • lisa g says:

      Thank you! I was afraid the cutout would dip past my bra in the back, so I filled it in by extending the CB seam up, then drawing in the upper edge on my pattern piece. I believe I curved it slightly, but not much. Sorry, I know that isn’t all that scientific!

  9. gingermakes says:

    This is so pretty! And I share your love for kimono tops! I just made three using Simplicity 1690… I realized after a ruthless wardrobe cull that I had exactly two woven tank tops and two woven tees left; my only other tops were grungy tees! Whoops! Got too carried away! But I should try this pattern because I prefer facings as well. They just feel more finished, plus sometimes I feel like it’s hard to sew bias tape on really nicely.

  10. ashley akers says:

    You are finding some great fabrics at Joann! I also made this top in rayon challis (my new favorite fabric) but with the cutout. It works fine on me with a bra fyi. Great work as always!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s