Striped Wiksten Tank

Hi everyone! I had such a fantastic weekend. Mr Rae’s parents had the kids for four days so Mr Rae and I got to have a nice relaxing “stay-cation” at home by ourselves. The house always feels so quiet when the kids are gone. It’s weird. And of course I miss them and we Skype or talk on the phone every day if we can. But I always know they are having so much fun at grandma’s (she has a pool — need I say more?) which allows me to relax and do all kinds of things I want to do, like sew, sew, sew! So this weekend I finished dress for Clementine (I know, yet another one…snooze) AND a short-sleeved Negroni Shirt for Mr Rae which I would photograph for you but it’s already in the wash (you can get a little peek here though) and this lovely Wiksten Tank for myself.

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Yeah!!! I had hoped to make one of these during the Spring Top Sewalong earlier this year, but got stalled when my measurements led me to a size that was way too big. I’ve learned over the past few years how important it is to always make a muslin (usually just out of cheap white muslin, not a “wearable muslin” which takes longer), but I’m starting to realize now just how much time it really does save (and wasted fabric, for that matter). For muslins, if you skip the finishing/hemming and just machine-baste all the seams, you can get a REALLY quick feel for whether it will fit or not. Anyway, I ended up getting stalled on the muslin step during STS because I selected a size too big, but when I finally decided to try it again this weekend, I found that I had already traced the smaller size I needed (another YEAH! Way to think ahead, Past Rae) so it took no time at all. The fabric here is a super lightweight cotton lawn that has almost a chambray-look to it that I found at Mood last fall in NYC. The stripe is woven into the fabric and it has a very breezy texture.

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I found (and I’ve seen others encounter this problem as well) that because I have curved shoulders that the back of the neck gaped something fierce, in both of the sizes I tried. Normally the fix for this would be to add some shoulder darts, but luckily I found that by pinching off the amount of excess on the muslin (it was about 2″ total), I was able to just move the pattern piece over the fold by 1″ at the top and the problem was easily corrected:

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So basically I took 2″ out at the neck but angled the pattern piece so that the bottom center edge lined up with the fold. As you can see the result worked out just fine.

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For others thinking about purchasing this pattern, I recommend it! Once you have the size you need, it’s such a quick sew. If you’re small-chested as I am you can make it without modification, but I’ve noticed that those with more up top tend to get creases/tightness in the bust area. If this is the case, I’d highly recommend either making it out of knit fabric (you might need to go a size down for this) or adding a bust dart, something that is actually fairly easy to do (the Threads Sewing Guide: A Complete Reference has a nice easy section on this, but there are a fair number of places online that show you how as well). Also, definitely go lightweight when it comes to picking fabric for this one, lawn or voiles are the way to go here, not quilting cotton so much (although you could try!!). Otherwise, I think the cut and style of this tank are lovely, absolutely perfect for summer!

Any other favorite summer patterns I should know about?

43 thoughts on “Striped Wiksten Tank

  1. Love the tank. What a great fabric you found! Thanks for the notes on the pattern, was kicking around trying it. I have very square shoulders though, so I might be able to make it as is. Compressed lips = slightly perturbed with the photographer? LOL.

  2. I really enjoy the way you cut the pocket to have opposing stripes. hmmm, sounds like I’ve been staring at a certain right boob a little too much.

  3. I have one for Clementine! This is one of my go-to patterns for summery outfits for Gracie. I should warn you, though–the top is insanely short, and the rise of the shorts is insanely high. But with some minor adjustments, it’s a favorite around here for just plain easy. (And considering how tall Gracie is, I’d have to adjust the length, anyway.) This is this year’s model, but I believe it’s the fifth or sixth time I’ve made it over the years.

  4. What a fantastic version of this tank! I love the striped fabric on the neck binding! Gorgeous, gorgeous! (and I’m completely jealous of your kid-free staycation. My parents/babysitters have been on a 6 week roadtrip. How dare they have fun when I need a babysitter :)

  5. Sounds like a blissful weekend. I’m going to have to get this pattern, I keep seeing so many great versions of it. Yours is lovely, gorgeous fabric too.

  6. I have been undecided on this pattern, but yours looks so great I am tempted!! I really like how you did the pocket.

  7. The fabric makes this my favorite wiksten yet! Nicely done. I love that we have the same watch too! Well, I don’t so much “have” it as “have it opened in a window on the computer at all times so that my husband will eventually get the hint”

    • GET IT!!! You will not regret it. I cannot tell you how many times a day I get compliments on this watch when I wear it. IN.SANE.

  8. My experience not so great with this one. My husband said it looked like a nurses uniform and like it didn’t fit. Made some adjustments, made another and it was still really unflattering. I think it may photograph nicer than it actually looks when you are walking around actually wearing it.

  9. oh fantastic fabric for the wiksten tank! bodies are so funny – i don’t get gaping with mine at all, and i made it just as the pattern said (only cut the bias tape a little shorter so it was sure not to flare out the neckline). good call on the muslin though! man i love that fabric. perfect muted stripe for summer.

  10. It looks great! I think it’s the bust tightness/creasing of a lot of the Tanks out there that’s been putting me off this pattern a bit. But when it fits right it looks really nice! Think I’m going to make a FBA to my next Tova, too, having worn the first one a bit – the inset kind of hitches up as I move my arms. Or maybe I should just make the next size??

    • Hi Nina:
      Here’s the thing…if you feel like the *shoulders* fit you fine on the Tova, you probably need a FBA. The other thing to note is that most patterns are designed for B or C cups, so if there is more than a 3″ difference between your bust measurement and your upper chest (under the arms around your torso), you could probably use an FBA!!

  11. well, i’m going to put it out there…
    i think , miss rae lady love, there is some baby baking love going on.
    The last couple of projects have all be wonderful and flowy and summery (& yes very wonderful). Then a masterful stroke of grandparent love so that you can get some more rest!
    or perhaps i am full of crap, and it is me that is clucky, and thinking that everyone is pregnant (like i need a #4).
    Oh, i hope it is true, because i hate that feeling you hear about when some one commits this act of calling someone pregnant when they are actually not, then they go on a diet bender, and it’s soooo not cool.
    big love,
    xoxx s

  12. I love the top! Great job!
    Also, thanks for being a Skirt Week judge. I found out about it when you mentioned it and was inspired to complete a skirt and enter it. Now I have something to wear all summer. An added bonus was that it made the top ten!

  13. Ooh, thanks for sharing about the neckline, Rae! I completely stalled out on the Wiksten tank because, silly me, I did NOT make a muslin first. The size I cut out was enormous on me. I’ve thought about taking it down a couple of sizes and making it in a knit, which you mentioned. You have inspired me to try again!

  14. thank you so much for the back neck solution. i was thinking of other solutions like apply a bit of elastic to the back neck but your solution is so much more sensible and elegant. not to mention easy!!

  15. What would happen if you took the same idea and applied it to the bottom (back) of the shirt? I’m making the Colette Sorbetto and feel that the front fits well and the top back doesn’t gape but there’s a ton of extra fabric back there? Is it possible that my shirt front would be one size and the back another?

    • Totally possible, dude. If it seems too big, it probably is. I just think we are so in this box of thinking that our bodies should fit exactly into the same sizes as everyone else — for me, when I realized my front was a S and my back was a M, it was pretty much life-changing. :)

  16. So…. I guess I need to take two inches of of the neck binding to match? I’m at that stage now. Thanks for the help!

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