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My mom, Pati Palmer, has been making some great outfits this summer that are a must share on the Palmer/Pletsch blog. I’ll let her tell you about them below.

Happy Sewing

X Melissa


Hello everyone! Pati here! I wanted to share my new cold shoulder caftan-esque top and dress, McCall’s 7596, which will be wonderful in hot summer weather. I have made View A twice and love it. It is so loose and comfy. I like the fact that the print allows me to wear it with black, white, or tan pants.



Read the finished garment measurements on the back of the envelope. The top has a lot of ease. I usually sew with a size 12, but have even larger hips. I sewed the taupe plaid double gauze, shown further down in this post, from a size small tracing I made to write the instructions.

The second one is in a lightweight border-printed cotton voile and I accidentally trimmed the tissue to the extra small. There was still plenty of room.



I did my high round back and sway back alterations. I didn’t worry about forward or square shoulder. Most of you wouldn’t have to do a full bust.


I planned on making the ties out of the dark border, but I made a sample of a lighter one that would match the sleeve. I decided not to use the dark tabs because they added width. My eyes just went side to side!

To make turning the ties easy, I pulled out my favorite loop turning device, the Fasturn. I put the wire with hook inside the tube. I slid the open end of the tab over the outside of the tube. Then I twisted the wire clockwise through the fabric and pulled the fabric through the tube, turning it right side out. Then I rotated the wire counter clockwise to un-hook it.

You need to follow the directions in the guide when topstitching the open cold shoulder and hem. All prep is done at one time, then you start at the underarm and stitch the armhole, pivot at the cold shoulder opening and stitch up one side and down the other, then the hem on the other side. NOTE: I pinned the tab to the sleeve in the opposite direction shown in the guide…I think a mistake in the art.


I found the gauze difficult to topstitch smoothly. To make it easier, I turned up ¼”, stuck ¼” Lite Steam-a-Seam 2 on top. I pressed on the paper to make it stick well before removing the paper. Then I turned up another ¼” and pressed to fuse  the hem in place. This added body, making topstitching easier.



This taupe plaid double gauze top is the first one I made while writing the guide sheet instructions. It was size small. Plenty of room! The taupe pants worn with the taupe top are made from our No-Side-Seam Pant pattern M7415. I used Pamela’s Fantastic Elastic at the top edge. (Pamela teaches our Palmer/Pletsch workshops in Phildelphia and Connecticut.) I cut the elastic in half and serged it on, turned it to the inside, and topstitched. The fabric was firm and the cropped legs seemed wide, so I pinned a tuck at inseam and outseam. I will play to see how many tucks I can do.



My friend Leslie Wilmott writes a travel blog:  A recent blog about river cruising had links to many great travel items such as this Wallaroo hat. These hats have sun protection like an SPF rating and most are packable. Thanks to Leslie’s suggestion, I bought the Wallaroo hat called Naomi in natural; I love it! The rim is not too wide and you can wear it many ways. It can be folded up for packing.    


Melissa’s raglan sleeve top M7574

My other recent sewing was to make Melissa’s very cute top M7574. I had a very small piece of gray ponte knit so did the unthinkable, made short sleeves. I wore it to our knit workshop in June with my rayon/nylon/spandex pant that I made narrow in the legs from our pant fit pattern McCall’s 6901. Teacher Helen Bartley immediately told me I looked young and slimmer. Really? Love the curved raglan sleeve. Several ladies made the top or dress.


Happy Summer Sewing!


This Post Has 13 Comments

  1. Leslie Willmott

    The hat looks great, Pati … and teamed with the taupe ensemble-fantastic! Thanks so much for the link to my blog! (P.S. I’m inspired to sew up the same look.)

  2. Dara

    So glad to hear from you and Patti! BTW,. Beautiful Sewing!

  3. Johanne

    Beautiful. I love the double gauze fabric that you picked, the colour looks great on you and it looks so breezy and comfortable! That pattern is definitely going into my stash!

  4. Carolyn DuPont

    Love the raglan sleeve. Beautiful.

  5. marijka

    Love these outfits! I love to sew for my mom and she’s been asking for caftans to wear around the house, but I never expected to also love it as a blouse. Picking up the pattern tomorrow!

  6. Lori

    Thanks, Pati for sharing your summer makes with us. They are all beautiful and thanks for the informaton.

  7. Sandy Davis

    Yes, Pati, you do look younger and slimmer in this last outfit! My 93-yr-old mother says she’s not going to get old, so I think you can take on that comment, as well!

  8. barbara hatelie

    lovely outfits

  9. Dara

    I don’t see any finished garment measurements on this pattern. Where are they located?

  10. Artisanal Creations

    Thanks, Pati for sharing your summer makes with us. Fantastic information in an entertaining way! The blog gives so much insight into the subject matter that it does not only become quite easy to understand the concept but to implement it as well.

  11. Julie C.

    I learned to sew in college with your books in my first sewing classes. I went on to use your books when I taught fashion design and merchandising in the California Community Colleges. Now, I use your books to help me streamline making costumes for my daughter’s plays. Thank you for being a part of my life for over 30 years! I can’t wait to sew up these tops!

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