A woolly Cashmerette Montrose Top

Cashmerette Montrose Top Hacked Wool

Ever since I saw this glorious sweater/top from Alice Alexander Co (a company I’m just a touch obsessed with) I’ve been a little bit obsessed with the idea of a non-stretch woolen top/sweater. I’ve pinned a lot of inspiration to my ‘boiled wool sweater’ pinterest board and taken numerous inspirational screenshots.

Boiled Wool Sweater Montrose Top

I consulted the instagram hive mind a few days ago and was flooded with recommendations and folks sending me pictures of their own non-stretch wool sweaters and was totally inspired to jump into action!

I made this sweater from my Cashmerette Montrose Top pattern and hacked the pattern quite a bit but totally unprofessionally to get to this long-sleeve box!

Cashmerette Montrose Boiled Wool Sweater

I didn’t want to buy a new pattern and I wanted something I already knew fit, and since I’m obsessed with the Montrose Full Bicep sleeve,
I very haphazardly used the top half of that and joined it on to the bottom half of the Harrison Shirt Sleeve (sans cuff piece). The sleeve is in two parts- mostly because I think it looks cool and also for pattern tetris and cutting ease.

Boiled Wool Sweater Montrose

Size details: I sewed the C/D cup bodice in a size 20, and since I knew I wanted a very boxy look and split side seams, I cut straight down from the underarm seam on both the front and back bodice pieces. When sewing up the top, I sewed only a seam rippers length down from the underarm seam (very scientific).

Boiled Wool Sweater


Since I cut the top part of the front bodice in two pieces, I decided to add some decorative top stitching along the seams there, and also on the arm seams. I left the bottom hem unfinished, but I think I’ll go back and add some similar top stitching to a largeish hem down there too!
I did a bit of a messy job with my bias binding neckline, I thought that this ‘Perfectly Imperfect’ label from Kylie and the Machine was an excellent match!

Toile of Harrison Shirt from Cashmerette

Cashmerette Harrison Shirt

I started this Cashmerette Harrison Shirt, my first shirt, with the intention of making a ‘wearable toile’ but have settled for a toile that included plenty of ‘firsts’ for me!


Usually when making Cashmerette Patterns, I’m able to pick my cup size, select my bust measurement and then grade out a size or two where the curve starts for the hips on the pattern pieces. But since the Harrison has double princess seams, I only graded out on the outside seam of the outer pieces of the back and the front, and it just wasn’t enough extra fabric to encourage my shirt over my hips.

Size details: I made a size 20 in the bust and graded out to a 22 on the two side pieces of the back and front. This didn’t give me enough additional fabric, and next time I’d grade out to a 24. I also used the very handy Full Bicep Sleeve piece for a great fit in the arms! My current measurements are 47″B 43″W 56″H

Morning Glory Top

Sarah Kirsten Morning Glory Top 3

A free plus size sewing pattern for beginners? Look no further!

The Morning Glory Top is a free top pattern from the lovely Sarah Kirsten (Check out my post on free plus size sewing patterns for beginners).

Sarah Kirsten Morning Glory Top

I made this top in some slightly shiny brick coloured cotton fabric which I got for the grand sum of $2 per metre from The Fabric Store. I wore this top a lot last summer, and devised an ingenious method for wrapping the ties around my bra strap before tying, if I wanted to make sure that it wasn’t showing.

Sarah Kirsten Morning Glory Top 2

Sizing Details: The instructions step you through drafting the top for your own measurements, so there’s no sizing to speak of here. I tried to ensure that the back ties were quite wide, so that they covered more of my back as they met, but that’s entirely up to you as you are drafting.

I think this pattern is perfect for beginner plus size sewists!

Liberty Lawn Springfield Top

Cashmerette Springfield Tana Lawn

I wish I had a picture of the dress that this top used to be so that I could share a before and after.

This Springfield Top pattern from Cashmerette is a recent purchase and has quickly become a Tried-and-True pattern in my wardrobe!

Cashmerette Springfield Tana Lawn 3

This liberty lawn was a very “spendy” purchase from The Fabric Store and was originally a StyleArc dress that I never wanted to wear, even though I loved the print.

Sizing Details: I’ve sewed the C/D cup bodice in a Size 20 at the bust, grading out to a size 22 at the hips. I’m wearing the top here with a 47″ bust and 54″ hip.

A hacked ruffle sleeve top

Peppermint Ruffle Sleeve Top Cotton 2

It’s quite hard finding good sewing patterns for larger ladies, and I’ve had so many fails with paid patterns that when I find free plus size sewing patterns, I definitely have to find out more.

I’ve learnt so much from sewing the Peppermint Magazine‘s free sewing patterns, and I hacked a couple of short sleeves versions of their popular Ruffle Sleeve Top.

Peppermint Ruffle Sleeve Top Cotton

Sizing Details: I made a Size J and in addition to omitting the ruffle sleeve, I omitted the entire sleeve. I used my burrito facing method which the Peppermint Jumpsuit pattern taught me to fully enclose the raw edges of the armholes and neck in the facing.

I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this hack because I did nothing to address the different drafting for sleeved and sleeveless things, so this top is forever falling off my shoulders. But, as far as free basic sewing patterns for beginners go, this one is a winner!