The Shell Top


A basic shell top, made with Butterick B6175. This took me quite a while to make! I’ve never actually finished a top/bodice before, and I had a lot of trouble fitting the facings to the neckline and arm holes. In the end, I got it together, but there are some huge fit issues! The back is quite roomy, which would be fine, but the keyhole part sticks out from my body like a fish fin!

I wanted to make a shell top so bad, and I fell for B6175 because it offered the opportunity of short sleeves and a peter pan collar, which are some of my favorite things! I was hoping to make the shell top my alternative to tank tops and t-shirts since they are much more chic for the same amount of comfort, but… fit issues…


You can see in the picture above, right below my hat brim a bunch of the material is sticking out (like a fin…)! This was a big disappointment, but a huge lesson in the importance of making muslins! I tend to think I’m fairly “normal sized” (whatever that is), but apparently not, since there is clearly too much fabric in the back. I do love the way this top looks from the front though, the neckline and shoulders are so flattering, and because of that I will be putting the effort into making a muslin and attempting to alter the pattern to fit me better!



  1. This looks great on you! I’m sure you’ll be able to figure out the back issues on your next top. It’s hardly noticeable in the pictures, but a cardigan or blazer would be a quick fix if it really bothers you. And it’s not you at all, sewing patterns have some weird quirks when it comes to fit and sizing.

    1. Thank you!
      A cardigan/blazer is a good idea, it’s definitely what I’ll be doing to wear this top! It’s so frustrating when one commercial pattern can fit you so perfectly, and the next is so far off!

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