The Sara Everyday Tank and dress is part of our basics line. One of the things I love about our basics line is all of the hacking possibilities. I took the Sara Everyday Tank, switched up the neckline, made some changes to the straps and it’s looking like a whole different pattern.
For this hack, you will need the Sarah Everyday Tank and Dress pattern. We have both the women’s version HERE, and the kid’s version HERE. In addition to the v-neck and gathered strap, I also added an encased elastic waist. I show how to do this in a previous blog post you can check out HERE if you would like to add that as well.
Once you have you pattern printed and assembled, it’s time to make some adjustments. If you decide you want to add the encased elastic, be sure to check out the tutorial for that first as you may need to add length to your pattern.
Making the V-neck
- Take your front bodice piece and lay it right side up.
- With a straight edge, angle the neckline down in a straight line just below the curved neckline.
- Cut off the small top curved portion.
Make the Band:
- Measure the new total length of your Sara neckline of the front and back together.
- The band should be 90% of the length of the finished neckline so you’ll need to take seam allowances into account. Take the total neckline you measured, subtract 1.5″ (for the should seam allowance) then add .75″ back for the neckband seam allowance. Once you have that number, you will multiply that by .9 to get you 90% length.
- To create the “V” mark the center of the end of the band piece, then measure in 1” from the edge.
- Measure over ½” on either side of the center line and mark.
- Connect the side markings to the bottom of the centerline using a straight edge and angled lines.
- Cut out the center v part.
To make Sara a dropped strap, you will need to remove a portion of the strap from the front bodice pattern piece and add it onto the back bodice piece. To create the gathers, you will need to widen the remaining portion of the front strap of the bodice.
- On the front bodice, measure and mark where you want the gathers to hit- I put mine just above my armpits.
- Draw a line across the strap at the marking and cut off the top portion of the strap.
- On the removed top portion, you will need to add on your ⅜” seam allowance to the bottom part of the strap.
- On the same top portion, mark which side faces the neckline and which faces the armscye to make sure you attach it to the back bodice correctly.
- Take the back bodice piece and tape on the separated piece of the front strap to the top of the back strap to extend the length of the back strap.
- Measure down 1.5” from the top edge (where you cut the strap off) and draw a line across the pattern piece.
- Lay the front bodice strap portion on top of another piece of paper lining up the bottom edge of the paper along the drawn line on the strap.
- This will be the part that is gathered. You don’t want to change the shape or length of the armscye, just the width at the top of the strap section to be gathered.
- Measure the starting width of the strap where you are going to widen it. (Mine is 2.75”)
- You want the strap to be 2.5 times wider when finished.
- Mark the center of the strap to evenly add width onto either side.
- Take your starting width and multiply that by 2.5 (Mine: 2.75″ x 2.5 = 6.8”)
- Divide that total by two to determine how much to add to either side of the strap (Mine: 3.4”)
- From the center marking on the strap, measure over your determined amount (3.4”) and mark on either side.
- Draw a line all the way across the top of the strap connecting the markings on each side.
- Cut out the pattern piece.
- Not shown: add 3/8″ seam allowance to the top of the front strap when cutting your fabric.
Now that all of your Sara pattern pieces are ready to go, it’s time to cut out your fabric. If you are adding an encased elastic waist, be sure to check your bodice length measurement before cutting. You will still be cutting one back bodice and one front bodice both on the fold, as well as your neckband and armbands.
- Gather the top edge of the front bands using two rows of gathering stitches.
- Pull the bobbin thread to gather until the top part of the strap is the same as the starting width.
- Lay the front and back bodice pieces right sides together and pin along the straps.
- I baste the strap first to check for placement and gathers, then sew or serge in place.
- You can cut off the points that extend past the edges, or, if you’re serging, you can wait and cut those off when you serge.
- Sew the bodice side seams per the tutorial.
- Add your neckband and armbands.
- If you are making a v-neck, you can check out our sewing school video for sewing a v-neck HERE.
- If you are adding an encased elastic waistband, you will do that now and then you will just need to hem the bottom.