Shelf 1845339274.01.lzzzzzzz

Yoke Top

Extract from Learn to Sew with Lauren • By Lauren Guthrie • Published by Mitchell Beazley


$ $ $ $ $
• • • • •

With Back Neck Opening
I love this little top, as the yoke offers lots of opportunity to add detail and contrast. In the version shown here, the main part of the bodice is gathered at centre front and the yoke itself accentuated with piping. The semi-fitted, A-line style is relatively easy to work with in terms of getting the fit right. The comfortable, slightly wide neckline has a small stand collar. Make the top in a crisp cotton print, as here, or in lightweight silk, as shown in the variation, for a dressier look.

Posted by Octopus Publishing Published See Octopus Publishing's 53 projects » © 2021 Lauren Guthrie / Mitchell Beazley · Reproduced with permission.
  • Step 1

    Cut out fabric pieces
    Using the pattern and following
    the cutting layout, cut out all sections of
    your top. Transfer all pattern markings
    onto your fabric.
    Cut one collar piece from interfacing and two strips of interfacing, each 17 x 4cm (6 . x 1 . in). Iron the collar piece to one collar section (this will be the outer collar) and iron the strips to
    the centre back of the inner yoke pieces.

  • Step 2

    Prepare front bodice
    Using a long stitch length, sew two rows of gathering stitches between the two dots at the top of the front bodice 5mm (.in) and 1.2cm (.) from the edge, leaving long thread tails. Pull up the gathers to fit between the two points on the front yoke and fasten the gathering threads temporarily by winding them around
    a pin at each end. Set this section aside.

  • Step 3

    Join side seams
    Matching notches, pin and stitch the side seams and finish off the raw edges.

  • Step 4

    Attach bias binding to armholes
    Apply bias binding to the armhole edges of the main bodice, folding it over twice so that the binding is on the inside. (The yoke armholes do not need binding as they will be finished with the lining.)

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 5
    Step 5

    Join inner and outer collar sections
    Place the inner and outer (interfaced) collar
    sections together with right sides facing. Pin
    (tack if you like) and sew them together along the
    shorter edges. Trim the seam allowance in half
    and notch it as shown to reduce bulk.

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 6
    Step 6

    Understitch inner collar
    Press the seam allowances towards the inner (non-interfaced)
    collar. Now, working on the right side, stitch through the
    inner collar and seam allowances, close to the seamline.
    Press the collar along the seamline so that the inner collar
    rolls to the inside; the understitching, as it is called, helps
    you to do this and keeps the seam allowances in place.

  • Step 7

    Neaten inner collar edge
    You now need to press under 1.5cm (⅝in) along the bottom edge of the inner collar, which is a little tricky as this is a curved edge. You can make this easier by stitching along the bottom edge at this distance and using the stitching as a
    pressing guide.

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 8
    Step 8

    Join front and back yoke
    Pin and stitch the outer front and back yoke sections
    together at the shoulders, with right sides facing. Repeat
    for the inner yoke sections. Press all seams open.
    At the bottom edge of the front inner yoke (only),
    machine-tack 1.5cm (⅝in) from the raw edge; using this as
    a pressing guide, press the fabric to the wrong side.

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 9
    Step 9

    Attach outer collar to outer yoke
    With right sides facing, pin (tack if you wish) the outer collar to the
    outer yoke, matching the notches on the collar to the shoulder seams and to the notches on the yoke neckline. Stitch the seam.
    Trim the seam allowances in half and then notch them to reduce bulk. Press them towards the collar.

    Lauren’s Tip
    As this is a curved seam you may need to fiddle around to get the
    raw edges to line up. Insert the pins perpendicular to the edge and use plenty of them. As you stitch, make sure that the fabric underneath is lying flat and that the raw edges remain aligned. Or, if you prefer, tack the seam before stitching.

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 10
    Step 10

    Join inner and outer yoke at armholes

    Pin (tack if you wish) and sew the outer and inner yoke sections together at each armhole with right sides facing, stopping when you reach the pressed under seam allowance at the bottom edge of the front inner yoke. Trim seam the seam allowances and notch them to reduce bulk.

  • Step 11

    Understitch armhole seam
    Turn the yoke right side out. Understitch the seam allowances to the inner yoke as for the collar in Step 6. Press the seam flat, ensuring that the understitching is on the inside of the garment.

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 12
    Step 12

    Join outer and inner yoke and collar at back opening
    You are now going to sew the edges of the back opening where the buttonholes will go. First fold the inner collar wrong side out and pin it together so that the right sides of both collars are facing. Pin the raw edges together. Line up the inner and outer back yoke pieces, right sides facing. The top edge of the inner yoke should overlap the seam allowances at the collar. Pin (tack if you wish) and stitch all the way from the top edge of the collar to the bottom of the back yoke on both right and left opening edges. Turn the yoke right side out.

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 13
    Step 13

    Sew inner collar to inner yoke
    Pin the inner collar to the inner yoke, ensuring that the raw edge of the yoke is concealed. Tack if you wish. Using ladder stitch as shown, sew the inner collar to the inner yoke.

  • Step 14

    Make the buttonholes
    Make four buttonholes in the yoke on the left-hand side.

  • Step 15

    Add optional piping
    Cut two lengths of piping, each about 2cm (3/4 in) longer
    than the lower edge of the front and back yoke. Pin one to
    the right side of the back bodice section along its top edge
    with raw edges matching. Machine-tack it in place, leaving the ends unstitched where they meet the stitching joining the binding at the armhole edge. On the front bodice piece, distribute the gathers evenly, then apply the piping in the same way.

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 16
    Step 16

    Join outer yoke and bodice
    With right sides facing, pin (tack if you wish) and stitch the
    front outer yoke section to the bodice front, matching centre
    points and taking in the piping, if used, at the same time.
    (If you have not previously adjusted the gathers, as in Step
    15, do so now.) At each side of the top edge of the bodice,
    you will have a 1.5cm (⅝in)overhang. This is normal and
    will ensure that the binding around the armhole is hidden.
    Press the seam allowances towards the yoke.

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 17
    Step 17

    Sew inner yoke to front bodice
    Fold under the seam allowance on the inner yoke that you
    pressed under in Step 9. Pin it over the seam joining the
    bodice and outer yoke, enclosing those seam allowances,
    and sew it in place with ladder stitch. Turn the ends of the
    piping in at the armhole edges to conceal them, trimming
    them if necessary.

  • How to make a blouse. Yoke Top - Step 18
    Step 18

    Join yoke to back bodice
    Place the outer and inner back yoke sections together. Placing
    them on a flat surface, tack them together about 3cm (1in) in
    from the lower edges to make sure they lie smoothly against
    each other. Pin and tack them to the back bodice with right
    sides together and with the buttonhole opening side under the
    other side as shown. Stitch the seam, enclosing the piping, if
    used; turn up the piping ends (trimmed if necessary) to hide
    them in the seam. Finish off the seam allowances together and
    press them down towards the back bodice.

  • Step 19

    Hem garment and sew on buttons
    Turn under and press 2.5cm (1in), then another 2.5cm (1in) along the bottom edge. Topstitch the hem in place 2.3cm (⅞in) from the bottom. Stitch the buttons on following the pattern markings.

    Variation Top with pleated bodice

    Mark the pleats on the right side of the bodice, following the pattern markings.
    Fold the pleats w
    Starting with the centre pleat, fold the bodice as
    indicated by the pattern markings and pin the
    pleats in place. Machine-tack across the top, 1.2cm
    (. in) from the top edge.

    Make bias binding for armholes
    From the main fabric, cut 50cm (20in) of bias binding, 18–20mm (. in) wide. Use this to bind the armholes of the bodice section as instructed in Step 4 of the main version.
    Complete the top as for the main version, steps 3–19.

    Other Variation Ideas
    * Use a bold contrasting patterned fabric
    for the main bodice with a plain fabric for
    the yoke sections, or vice versa.
    * Use lace for the outer yoke, with a plain
    lightweight fabric underneath, to make it
    more of a feature.

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