Batwing maternity top

Over the Christmas and New Year break, I decided to try drafting my own maternity t-shirt. The idea was to base it on Vogue 8565, which I had already made into this teal tunic (also a good maternity top, although it’s not sold as such). I wanted something simpler, with a batwing sleeve and as few seams as possible.

More slouchy than elegant

After a bit of trial and error, I converted the front pleats into extra space for my ever expanding bump (apologies that I can’t remember exactly how – like I said, there was a bit of trial and error, but it was based on a standard slash and spread method of sorts). I’ve seen two different ways to ensure the hem is straight in maternity clothes. You either make the front hem dip down at the centre and then curve up to the side seams (so when it goes over the belly, the hem evens itself out) or you add side gathers, essentially creating extra fabric across the stomach area. I decided to try and later method.

The pattern is a single piece – I joined the front and back pieces of the Vogue pattern at the neck to get the shape of the neck, measured my arms and extended the arm space to make the cap sleeve and guessed (and muslined) the depth for the batwing.

Overall, I reckon it’s ok. I like the concept of the single piece pattern, but I did struggle when trying to turn under the neckline – the lines weren’t curved enough to work correctly. I didn’t really add enough gathering at the side, so it looks more like a mistake than a deliberate feature (but it’s ok, because it’s so long, I don’t need the gathers to cover my bump and protect my modesty). The look is more slouchy, when I was going for drapey and elegant. Still, it was an interesting challenge, and the fabric didn’t cost much, so I don’t feel like anything was wasted. If it had been more successful, I might have made another – but I don’t like it enough for that.


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