Ottobre painted canvas top

A woman stands in front of a weatherboard wall. She wears a colourful printed t-shirt, crop jeans, and leather loafers.

I know, another short sleeved top. I’m nothing if not consistent! This top is made from one of my Ottobre back issues, Summer/Spring 2/2016 #2, printed canvas t-shirt. It was drafted for knits, but as Ottobre tees tend to have a generous fit, I chanced sewing it with a stretch woven. The fabric substitution worked better than I anticipated, and now I have another versatile short sleeved top to add to my wardrobe.

A pattern image from Ottobre Magazine.
As you can see, my top didn’t turn out too different to the sample in Ottobre. The hair, on the other hand…

The fabric itself is yet another acquisition from the Spotlight $2/m sale – a stretch cotton/spandex sateen in a print called “glass”. Spotlight have outdone themselves with on-trend prints lately, but the quality is still not there – this print was terribly off-grain, and I had to match to the pattern rather than the grainline. I’d be more inclined to pay full price for their fabrics if I was assured of the quality.

A woman stands in front of a weatherboard wall. She wears a colourful printed t-shirt, crop jeans, and leather loafers.

This has been a surprise hit – I seem to wear it every few days. The pattern is nothing special, but the slightly flared silhouette is quite flattering. It reminds me a little of Tessuti’s Frankie top, but less exaggerated. My only wish is that I hadn’t messed with the sleeves – I shortened them and curved the hem for a more modern look, but I think the longer sleeves would have been a better choice (and provide more coverage from the sun!).

After the success of this make, I’m tempted to dive back into my Ottobre collection more frequently. As it is, they tend to sit neglected on my bookshelf in favour of my neatly catalogued digital PDF library, but I have downloaded the pattern sheets of the editions I own in an attempt to “flick” through them more often.

A woman stands in front of a weatherboard wall. She wears a colourful printed t-shirt, crop jeans, and leather loafers.
I scored these crop jeans at The Laboratory closing down sale, and they are stretchy enough to wear with my mobility issues! Hooray! And let’s have a moment of silence for the passing of another Warrnambool clothing shop.


The deets:
Pattern: Ottobre Spring/Summer 2/2016, #2 – painted canvas t-shirt
Pattern details: paper pattern, in Ottobre pattern magazine. Traced from pattern sheet, sizes 34-52.
Fabric: 1.2m x 127cm printed cotton sateen in glass, $2.40 from Spotlight on sale
Other materials: 12mm bias tape, Aliexpress. Strip lightweight fusible interfacing, to stabilise shoulders and neck.
– 12mm forward head adjustment, same to sleeve
– added 2cm length at hem
– omitted pocket
– cut back in 2 pieces due to fabric shortage
– shortened sleeve and curved hem slightly
– added a tiny bit of width to sleeve side seam (for more ease) and garment side seam at hip

Author: Siobhan S

20 something, living in country Australia. Spoonie profile: ME/CFS, dysautonomia, anxiety. All about sewing, knitting and food. Unapologetic disability advocate.

8 thoughts on “Ottobre painted canvas top”

  1. Hi Siobhán, that top is amazeballs. I notice you try to increase your colour when things get a bit harder for you. Fair play, but please also take care of yourself. Grá mór (big love) from Ireland. Your writing is amazing by the way. I keep trying to introduce my niece (chronic pain also) to it but realised I’m being an asshole by doing that. Ouch, it’s hard to do the right thing. 😁


    1. Haha, I like it when caring relatives share their reading with me 🙂 I’m sure you did what you thought was right.

      Colour certainly does make me feel better about myself and more “me”!


  2. Love your top. Looks fab. I also concur with your assessment of Spotlight – there is more there to tempt, but the quality isn’t up to scratch, by and large. I only ever buy fabric there on sale, because at full price it’s just not worth it.


  3. What a happy top! I really like the cheerful print, and it fits you perfectly! Your sleeves are also very cute, even though they don’t protect you from the sun. 😄


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