A simple modification

I wasn’t going to blog this make because it is alarmingly simple, but then I did a clever thing (unbecoming lack of modesty, I know!), and thought I would share.

I turned a RTW top into – er – another top (no, that’s not the clever thing!) Back when I was still buying clothes I got talked into this and it looked fabulous on me in the shop, but never looked fabulous again, so I think I only wore it once or twice. Because I wasn’t going to blog this, I didn’t take before photos, but this is a picture of what it looked like


Sorry for the shocking photo, but you can see that it was large with sharp sides hanging down. On me it just looked droopy and frumpy. The image was sewn on a bag that the top came in, which looked like this


I’ve had this top sitting in my sewing room for about a year, and a couple of months ago I chopped off the bottom, but still found it uninspiring. It needed a pocket. I looked at the chopped off pieces, but they weren’t doing it for me, and then my eyes lit on the bag. An obvious pocket, and a good size to boot.

I pondered my options, and hit upon the idea of sewing the whole bag onto the top, giving it a nice angle. I sewed the whole of one side to the top, leaving the bag opening open for my hand and possibly treats,


and then using the drawstring to pull it up, creating an interesting line at the side and bottom. dsc08674

Tah-dah! I have decreed this to be the perfect top for travel. It is made from a gorgeous modal, it’s light, can be layered from underneath, it launders easily and, it has a pocket! dsc08675

I had another issue with this top – none of the stripes matched! I decided to leave the sleeves where they were, but unpicked the side seams completely, and have now matched them pretty well.


I did have a bit of a problem with the hem. I sewed on the pocket whilst the side seams were unpicked and then had to finagle the bottom. Because of the width of the top, I couldn’t get rid of the sharp sides, so simply rounded off the hem at the sides and curved the back so that it was longer than the front. You can see that the stripes aren’t even, but I can live with it.


I reverse coverstitched the hem and the pocket, but left the rolled hems that were already round the neck and sleeves.

This top has malingered in a drawer for around five years but since modifying it I have worn it endlessly, so deem it a total success.


37 thoughts on “A simple modification

  1. Incredible idea!!!! I want to steal it, hah. If you see me with a drawstring pocket, that will 100% be your influence – and I’ll tell everyone who will listen. What a major refashioning win!

  2. Clever! You could also put the whole top in the bag/pocket like those raincoats, for when you pack… although that would scrunch it up and wrinkle it… but you know, you could if you wanted to 😉

  3. What a great save. I always enjoy making something out of nothing if you know what I mean. You look fabulous in this. Lovely casual top.

  4. Very clever hack with that drawstring bag as a pocket. That’s a great idea – keeps phone and keys secure and adds interest to the shape of the top. Nice one!

  5. Brilliant! I think it looks marvellous with the pocket closed.
    It annoys me when stripes don’t match – glad I’ve found someone else who feels the same.

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