Hello there! I’m Lucie of Love, Lucie back on the Minerva Bloggers Network.

Today I bring you not 1, not 2 but 3 simple embroidery anglaise summer tops!

I went on a bit of a journey with this post for Minerva.

Originally this gorgeous soft white Embroidered Cotton Lawn Fabric was destined for the Butterick 6333 shirt dress.

And it would have been absolutely perfect for it.

But something stopped me. I was listening to a sewing podcast – I love to listen to, ‘Love To Sew’.

You should give it a go!

Anyway, a phrase I heard stuck with me. ‘Sew for the life you have and not the one you don’t.’

This really made me think.

When I spend 5 full days a week at work in trousers, 3 evenings on my bike with my cycling friends or in the gym, weekends sewing or in the garden, generally gardening, and evenings out with my husband generally in something more edgy, when exactly would I get to wear a beautiful white dress.

I don’t attend many weddings, garden parties in country estates, Henley Regattas, Wimbledon, Chelsea Flower shows etc etc. which this would have been perfect for.

But all that effort to remain hanging in the wardrobe?

But everyday clothing can be both practical and beautiful. So, here are my 3 everyday tops.

None of these tops contains a single closure, zip or button and are therefore incredibly quick makes!

By the way, I found that photographing bright white in bright, bright sunshine very tricky!

First up is the Montavilla Dress and Top by an American company Sew House Seven.

As the pattern says, it comes as a dress and a top. As usual I had spotted it on Instagram.

The little frills on the shoulder are really simple to do. You gather up the longer edge and sew it to the shorter one. It’s really simple but effective. I made them even more ruffly by increasing the difference in length between the 2 sides.

I also added 2 inches to the length of the body.

There is also an unusual side panel with elastic threaded through the top casing to give the top a little more shape.

The neck is finished with bias binding which I made from an old soft white cotton sheet as I didn’t want to add any bulk. This worked beautifully.

Second is this simple Jily tank top by French company Ready To Sew.

The instructions come in English.

This looks better in real life than in the photos, where it looks a little shapeless.

This photo taken indoors is more like what it actually looks like.

The tie is made up from these ears!! There is an option not to include the tie but I needed that for shaping.

As it is finished using facings, you can see them through the fabric but I don’t mind that, they are a nice shape.

Last, but my favourite, is the Suun Blouse by P & M patterns, another French company.

Again, with excellent English instructions, this comes as a top and a dress, with long and short sleeves. I am already sewing up another in double gauze and have plans for a long sleeve version for Autumn in a voile.

I went with the option for including a Mustard Coloured Piping which is actually Atelier Brunette, also from Minerva. It was my first go at using piping on a garment and I was really pleased how successful it was, using my zipper foot to get close to the piping.

The piping runs all the way around the back of the neck in-between the yoke pieces.

There is a simple facing to the front v neck.

I took a couple of inches off the bottom of this one.

I love the cap sleeves and the gathers under the piping which provides shaping for the bust.

It’s a beautiful pattern.

I would heartily recommend seeking out some French company pattern makers. They seem to achieve a little elegance at a competent beginner level.

Regarding the fabric, I always thought that an Embroidery Anglaise type fabric might be a little stiff and maybe scratchy against the skin. But this embroidered cotton lawn really is not. It is soooo soft and sewed up beautifully, just like a cotton lawn.

One thing to be aware of is that it comes in 44’’ width, so order more accordingly.

Remember that it is a little sheer. You can see your body silhouette through it with the sun behind you!!

It also takes dye very successfully. I think I might dye the first one a lovely deep blue.

It would have been perfect for the shirtdress, but I think a shirtdress in denim or chambray would get a lot more wear!

Love, Lucie xx