Ottobre Design Woman 05/2016 no. 15 'Like a Warm Hug' top

As our South Carolina mountain weather has cooled a bit..... (finally!), it's a perfectly perfect day to venture off to Devil's Fork State Park wearing my new top.
The first thing that might grab your attention are the exposed serged rolled hem seams.  Front v-neckline, center front, center back, sleeve hems and hem are all serged rolled hems. 
The more I make Ottobre patterns, the more I really like them. 
They seem to be designed for my lifestyle and body shape; so, without too much trepidation, I cut a size 38 and stitched this up with no modifications using a sweater knit with terry pile to the inside purchased at Hobby Lobby for @$6.00/yard.  I used 2 yards.   
It really does sew up looking just like the line drawing.
An initial struggle for me was deciding the best way to create the exposed seams.  Should they be left as raw edges, should they be serged, should they be serged rolled hem with matching thread, contrast thread..... on and on... somewhere along the way the thought struck me to use red.....
 ....so red it became!  Not only did those very visible front and back (and of course side-to-side) stripes have to line up..... there was now the concern of the very visible red seam.  I knew if it was not done properly, the mistakes would be glaring.  Struggling to match the stripes with my new Brother 1634D serger to these high expectations while serging, not to mention too chicken  I could not bring myself to take out the stitch finger to use the rolled hem stitch ability as I did not want any drama getting it back in... I thought of my very old Bernette for Bernina FunLock 006D serger that was placed in retirement a few months ago when the Brother was purchased, and decided it must be brought out of retirement and be used again.  Let me pause here a moment and say.... I love my old serger!  Purchased new in the mid-1990's it has been used ever so much with nary a day in the shop, but the last year or two the left needle thread tension had gone out, so I'd only been using it as a 3-thread serger until I bought the Brother.  The Brother cost about what a shop repair would've been, so figured that was being a good steward of my money.  And I do like the Brother for day to day serging..... but oh my goodness..... the Bernette/Bernina purrs and serges oh-so-smoothly compared to the clunkier Brother.  Anyway.... with a click of a lever, the Bernette/Bernina serges the most beautiful rolled hem AND keeps my fabric moving through more evenly than the Brother, even though both machines have differential feeds.  This top begins by serging a rolled hem on both sides of the front V-neckline.  In the photo below, I've already serged the rolled hem on the neckline and have it set up to serge a rolled hem down the center front.   Thanks to a serendipitous photo Carolyn put on IG showing how she pins both the beginning and end of each stripe, I did the same, below, and it worked beautifully.  You can see a little of how my sweet machine has yellowed with age but still serged beautiful rolled hems on this top.  A workhorse!
 The stripes aren't perfectly matched..... but they are acceptable to me.
When I make this again I'll probably add a little to the hip width.
Side view shows stripe matching there too and may I say it was sooooo much easier stitching right sides together, using my Bernina 1230 sewing machine.  Nothing wiggled or moved while sewing there! 
Instead of the 3/8" stretch grosgrain ribbon the pattern required for binding and stabilizing the back neckline, I used bias binding made from a scrap of coordinating fabric from the stash.  Love the way Ottobre has you bind the back neckline as all raw edges are covered and tucked in nice and neat.
I was afraid I would not like the serged rolled hem for the sleeve and top hem, but find it doesn't bother me at all.
The top goes well with my red Ottobre no. 14 pants.  Overall I really do like this top and can see it getting lots of wear this cooler season!
Also this is the first item completed for the Make a Garment a Month October Challenge of 'Sew One'.  Sarah Liz, our lovely moderator of the Make a Garment a Month group comes up with our creative monthly themes and she can be contacted here if you are interested in participating too.  My take on this theme is to use 1 sleeve pattern for 2 different tops. 
The two tops, no. 15 and no. 8, are circled below.  In this 05/2016 issue, Ottobre designed two different tops with the exposed serged rolled hem as a design feature..... with both tops using the same sleeve pattern.  How cool!
And back to today..... thought it'd be fun to share the very first photo I took this morning when walking upon the sand......
....and the very last.  They flew right over my head.  :)
Happy Sewing Everyone!


  1. Great top! I enjoyed your discussion of the serging and the comparison's between your serger. I bet you really miss your old one! I love my Juki serger, like your Bernina, nice and quiet, very strong, great features. And - I'm going to look for that fabric at my HL - it's so cute!

    1. Thank you so much Coco!! After this project..... I'm keeping the Bernette/Bernina serger out of retirement permanently! It made me realize what a fantastic machine it is, even if mine only serges with 3 threads now. Somewhere on the internet I've read, that the Juki serger is the same/replaced my old Bernette/Bernina serger? Wonder if that is true.

  2. It's such a happy thing to have the Ottobre patterns fit with no fuss! They look so good on you! I have been keeping my eye on red white and navy, très chic!
    The line drawing of this pattern looks so basic, but with your striped fabric and red accents, you've made something beyond basic. I want to have that skill too :)

    1. Thank you so much Erin! This project was pondered over and sampled over for so long, I was afraid it was bordering on procrastination! But somewhere along the way it simply all fell into place. Wish all project were like that!!! :)

  3. Such a nice top and the red contrast exposed seam are the perfect compliment for this top. You did such an excellent job.

  4. Lisa, love everything you did in this beautiful top. Well done! Those stripes are matching perfectly :) Great pictures too.

  5. I love those red serged seams in combination with the blue and white stripes! The whole outfit looks great together. I'm so glad you discovered Ottobre patterns for you and I think after your positive report I might try them too! :-)

    1. I look forward to seeing what you think of their patterns and what you choose to make! Thanks Katharina! :)

  6. Your top looks so lovely and so professionally sewn! the stripes look perfect to me. I absolutely love the idea of using red thread, really lifts it a notch into designer territory, and yes, goes so well with your red trousers! I like reading about your old machine, coming up roses. I've tucked my old sewing machine away too, and sometimes think I should get it out and give it a spin every now and then. I miss it!

    1. Serging these seams with my old serger, was like reuniting with an old friend, so you'd probably enjoyed visiting with your old friend every now and then. Thank you so much for your kind, encouraging words. :)

  7. The top is very beautiful. The detailing with the red thread is great choice and turns it into a lovely match wit the red trousers.


Thank you for taking the time to leave a note.~Lisa

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