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Awhile back I wrote a blog post about the Mexican Huipil that I scored at a thrift store. It’s still one of my favorite tops, though now that I know how much hand embroidery and care probably went into making it, I wear and wash it a bit less often, in the hopes it will last longer!
I’ve been wanting to copy the shape of this top for awhile and since I had a piece of rayon that was only about a yard, I thought it was a good time to try it.
Now I can truly say, this is the easiest top ever!! Anyone can draft a rectangle and that’s seriously all it is. A rectangle with a neckline. The back and front are the same.
Let me show you my finished top first and then I’ll show you how I did it and how easy it is, so you can try it too.
The cool thing about this being the same on the front and back is that you can get creative about the hemline and the trim, if you decide to add some. I had a small length of lace leftover from this (my most-worn garment this summer!) So it was enough to trim the front hem, but not the back. But it turned out to be a cool design feature! I can reverse the top and do a front tuck so that lace is in the back. I can’t decide which way I like it better.
Ok, here’s how you can draft a rectangle top for yourself. This isn’t so much of a full tutorial with step by step photos, but I think it’s enough info. And it’s just super easy, I think anyone could figure this out!
To cut the right size rectangle, you need to decide how long you want it. Mine is 27” in length (that includes 1” for seam allowance and hem. For the width, take your hip measurement and add 1”. Divide that number by four. My hips measure 39”, so after adding an inch and then dividing by 4, my rectangle’s width is 10”. Here’s my finished rectangle, for a visual.
Ok, next draft your neckline. Measure 3” from the center front and 7” down from the top. Simply create a curve using the above photo as a guide.
You can see I have two notches on the side seam of my rectangle, one is 8.5” from the top and the other is 5” up from the bottom. When you sew your side seams, sew in between the notches, then narrow hem the sleeves and the slits. The slits help the top fit over your widest part (your hips) without making the top really wide everywhere else, so I wouldn’t leave them off unless you’re very narrow in the hips.
So here are the steps in order:
Sew your shoulder seams.
Stay stitch the neckline to prevent stretching.
Finish the neckline with your preferred method. I made a bias binding and turned it to the inside and stitched.
Sew your side seams between notches and press open.
Narrow hem your arm holes and side slit openings.
Hem the top and add trim if you want.
Done! If you have questions, I’d be happy to help further!
I’m a little baffled about why this basic rectangle top fits so well, when everything else seems to needs darts and adjustments up the wazoo for it to fit me right. But I guess I won’t question it ;)
I’d be thrilled if you pinned this graphic to come back to for later and for others to share too!