Big news – a new True Bias pattern dropped yesterday!! If you haven’t already seen it, take a quick minute to go check it out. As we’ve come to expect from Kelli and True Bias, this pattern is another absolute winner. The Calvin Wrap Top and Dress is a strappy true wrap top / dress with some great details. It looks perfect in linen and linen blends, but would also be so great in a rayon or one of those beautiful silk noils I’ve had my eye on. I had the pleasure of testing this pattern – there have been a few minor tweaks to the pattern since then, mostly in the strap length, but I’ve been absolutely in love with this top ever since I finished stitching it up.
I chose to sew the top version of the Calvin. I used a beautiful linen chambray from Indie Sew that I’ve had in my stash for about a year. I originally purchased it thinking that it would be a Kalle Dress, but I’ve not found myself very motivated to ever sew that up. When I saw the Calvin, I knew that it was a perfect match, and would result in a garment I would likely wear much more frequently!
I really enjoyed testing this pattern. I won’t lie – I was a little nervous about the amount of bias binding at first! I’ve not made my own bias binding in the past, and it has always seemed like such tedious work! When it got down to it, though, it was an oddly relaxing and soothing step. Fairly mindless, very straightforward, a nice way to kind of decompress and relax while still making progress on a project. I would absolutely recommend a bottle of spray starch, though – I’ve never felt the need to use starch with a project before, but it was truly a time saver here! I linked what I used below.
The pattern is beautiful – it just felt like every detail was accounted for. The neckline is deep without being overly revealing, but the pattern includes an option to add a snap for a little more modesty if the lower neckline is not your style! The dart placement worked perfectly for me without any adjustments. The scoop of the back is a really nice detail, and the straps are so well thought out, and align pretty perfectly with bra straps, should you want to wear it with one! The straps on my version are just a little bit long, and I did have to use the slider to shorten them a good bit. The final version of the pattern calls for 3” less on the strap pattern piece, so this (super minor) issue shouldn’t bother anyone! I had a slight bit of trouble finding ½” bra rings and sliders as suggested in the pattern locally, and ended up using a ⅜” set that I was able to grab from JoAnn. However, if you are planning out your pattern and have time to grab some, I’d suggest checking out Tailor Made – she stocks a great selection of rings and sliders in beautiful metal finishes, in a variety of different sizes (including ½”!!).
The pattern is a functional wrap, which includes a buttonhole on one side to feed the ties from inside the bodice to outside, and a thread loop on the other side, to keep the ties in place. I hadn’t made a thread loop before, and really enjoyed the well-illustrated and explained technique for this in the pattern instructions! The tie straps are pretty long, and easily wrap around my waist twice with plenty leftover to tie a nice little bow.
If you haven’t already, go grab yourself a copy of this excellent pattern! If you live somewhere like I do, you have PLENTY of warm weather ahead to make yourself a summery version of the Calvin. If you live somewhere where cool Autumn weather is already knocking on your door, I would absolutely suggest sewing one up to layer over your favorite turtleneck or long sleeve tee (a Nikko Top, maybe??) for the crisper weather. I saw a couple of other testers try out this look with the dress version, and it was beautiful!
Brother XR9500PRW Sewing Machine
Brother 1034D Overlocker
Schmetz Universal Machine Needles – Size 70/10
Dahle 36×48 Self-healing Cutting Mat
Faultless Regular Spray Starch
⅜” Lingerie Strap Slides / Rings
Though the pattern used in this post was generously provided to me to test by True Bias patterns, all words and opinions expressed are my own, as always! Links provided throughout this post may be affiliate links – if you choose to purchase any products through these links, I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you. This simply helps me justify the costs of my sewing habit and the time it takes to share it with you!! I appreciate each click! Happy Sewing!
- XX Elizabeth