Get ready for the sunshine in an easy to fit 50’s style bra top in gorgeous gingham…

After a very sunny May, the warm weather inspired me to sew some easy to wear tops for the Summer. Perfect for garden days, picnics and maybe travels further afield if we are lucky!

After looking for a versatile pattern, I decided on Simplicity 1426 and hacked it into a little Summer top. This post is a review of the softest gingham fabric and how I hacked it into a very wearable vintage top.

Let’s start with why you need this pattern in your stash! Simplicity 1426 is a rework of a 1950’s archive pattern. It consists of five bra tops to create! These bras can be hacked into tops or even dresses. For any vintage fan this is a great addition to your collection. I also liked that the envelope had a model wearing one of the bras as you can see how it fits instead of just the illustrations.

Each pattern has cute little details and the pattern is a great introduction into bra making as the bras don’t use any underwiring or bra notions. I ordered one metre of fabric and I could have made two bras out of my metre which makes it a great value project.

I opted for version B as I loved the cross over back design, I love the way that the straps cross and then become part of the front detail. I also liked the gathers over the bust. I’m just finishing breast feeding so my shape may change, so the gathering can change too.

The garment is lined and faced with a gathered detail at the front and also at the sides. This gave it a very vintage feel. For a large cup size, padded cups can easily be sewn into the cups. I added a bow to the front as I’m wearing it as a Summer top.

The gingham was so soft to wear and great to sew. Sometime gingham can be scratchy but not this one, so perfect for a Summer top and easy to iron too! It’s yarn dyed which makes the design sharper than a printed fabric.

Now, why did I hack this bra? I wanted to make some super comfy tops to wear this Summer and couldn’t find a pattern. By adding five inches to bottom band of this bra top, I created a top that’s easy to wear with a button and clasp detail at the back.

I used these pretty pink buttons and a two clasps on my extended bodice.

My plan is to wear these tops with high waisted shorts and trousers (as well as my jeans!) and put on my over size brimmed hat and think I’m on a white sandy beach this Summer!

I am also going to make the bra version too as it’s so comfy when I’ve been used to feeding bras for so long! So… for my next trip away I have the prettiest and comfiest ‘by the pool tops’. Hopefully I can get to jet off to a beautiful beach soon with my latest additions to my suitcase!


Pattern - Simplicity 1426 Version B

Fabric - Pink Gingham 1m, you could get two bra tops out of this length.

Time to sew - 3 hours

Level - Easy / Immediate

Needle used - Standard 80 (but make sure it’s a new one!)

Changes to pattern - I added 5 inches to the bottom band to make the bra into a Summer top. I then added a bow to the front to add to the vintage look.

What would I change if I stitched it again? I love the variations on this pattern and I would make the wrap over version next.

 I hope I’ve inspired you to make your first bra if you are thinking of where to start.

Thank-you Minerva for the beautiful fabric and pattern, I love a vintage pattern and creating a garment from the past makes it just that little bit special.

Samantha writes a creative craft blog and hosts Crafternoon Tea Parties and Events in the Midlands and beyond when it’s safe to do so!