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Merchant and Mills Top 64

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A few weeks ago we had an exciting delivery... we are now stockists of Merchant and Mills sewing patterns.

If you have anything to do with sewing in the UK you can't have missed Merchant and Mills and their delicious range of luxury haberdashery (we've got their lovely pins here), but did you know they have an excellent selection of sewing patterns too?

Initially these patterns were only available to order - you would specify the exact size you wanted and then this would be made up and sent to you in a tube.  So, when they recently released patterns on multi-size tissue this was music to our ears.

I had to get straight on and make something and decided on the Top 64.  I made it up in this gorgeous Pink and Yellow Crossweave Canvas.  The yellow is only just yellow, so the overriding colour of this fabric is pink, but the crossweave gives it a lovely golden hue.  The weight was perfect for the artists smock look of this top.

I sewed up a size 14 and wouldn't want it to be any smaller as this fabric doesn't have much give. I would like to sew another one in a knit, and then could definitely go smaller.

As a beginner dressmaker this is totally do-able.  Instructions are fairly slim, but totally adequate and it does assume that you know to sew with a standard seam allowance of 5/8".  The only thing I did differently was to sew the neck facings before the side seams (I have the words of our dressmaking tutor Terry ringing in my ears "Always work the neck before sewing your side seams").  And the other thing to note is that if you do all the top stitching - which looks lovely, you will get through nearly 200m of thread.  I was that person popping into the shop mid-project just to pick up another reel of thread!!

All in all I am really pleased with this top.  It is a great summer cover up and I am really enjoying it's simple utilitarian look.

And... look, real pictures of me wearing it... these were taken this morning before the rain set in.  It was pretty gloomy and the fabric looks paler than it really is, but we are moving forward with our pictures, no?

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