How to find gems in the fabric discounts, Simplicity 9605

African American women with her eyes closed in Ankara top Simplicity 9605

Facts. I made Simplicity 9605 for less than $10. Seven dollars and fifty cents plus tax, to be exact. Are you shaking your head in disbelief? Great, keep reading to find out how I did it, a pattern review, and tips on how you can score all sorts of cool fabrics for less.

Mindset is everything

Summer is when I start obsessing about sewing something on Monday to wearing it on Friday. The days are longer, the watermelon 🍉 is sweet and cool, and the vibes are chill. I’m sewing like crazy and pumping out these summer tops like Simplicity 9605 for sport.

In the midst, of sewing, I’m also trying to save a bit of dough. The addiction to creating, paired with traveling, means I’m dedicated to fiscal responsibility in order to make the most of the season.

Simplicity 9605 Pattern features

So many ways to sew and style this top. There are four views. View A of Simplicity 9605 features a ruched midline with a flutter sleeve. Then, View B is the same top without the midline detail. View C has an elasticized waist with sleeves; the last sewing view eliminates the sleeve. They are cute and warm weather ready.

My Fabric choice for Simplicity 9605

My first reach is for Ankara. I made Simplicity 9605, View C, out of a scrap. Yes, you read that right. My husband and I were out on a date in Savannah, Georgia. We go on a date about once a week. This was a fancy date because we drove an hour and a half to this restaurant with a Kool-Aid vodka jello shot called Treylor Park. I digress.

Simplicity 9605 pattern and Ankara

Anyway, after a few of those, we walked to Leopold’s ice cream, and on the way back, what did we find? The Savannah Fabric Company! It used to be Fabrika, but it is now permanently closed. Now let’s talk about fabric stores and Savannah in another post, but The Savannah Fabric Company is tucked away amidst the southern squares.

We walked in, perusing the tiny but classy fabric store while the shopkeeper tore fabrics. Music to my ears. And there it was a discount bin. But not just any discount bin because right there on top was a scrap of Ankara. Seriously? It was out of place in this quaint, almost quilt-filled store. The asking price for a yard and a half was a mere $7.50 with a missing cut. Sold to the pretty lady ( that’s me!). Just enough to make Simplicity 9605, or so I thought.

I’m obsessed with pattern and print placement, so it would have been fine if I didn’t care, but I cared too much like a Karen. Two hours later…sigh of satisfaction.

Sewing tips

There is a lot of internal casing for the elastic. You will sew five rows if you make Simplicity 9605 as designed. The single-fold bias tape is used as the casing, genius. Depending on your tummy girth, you may choose to redesign this for comfort. I did not use 5/8” elastic. I sewed three rows and used 1/4” elastic, and it’s perfect.

Petite Adjustments for Sewing S9605

Tip: take your back-to-waist measurements and compare them to the pattern. That is measured from the base of your neck to the top of your waist.

I removed approximately 1 inch, even with the elastic waist. In addition to this alteration, I eliminated two rows of encased elastic to make the Simplicity 9605 top more proportional to my torso.

Hacks for this romantic top

There are so many options! What I wanted to do was add another layer to that flutter sleeve. If the fabric had not been Ankara, maybe this would have been the way to go. It’s such a feminine top and flattering on almost any body type.

Petite Styling Tips for Simplicity 9605

  • Show some skin on the bottom to draw attention to the top and your face
  • Eliminate any neckwear or necklaces to keep you looking and feeling tall.
  • Try skinny jeans or leggings for a slimming look.

How to find great deals on fabric

  • Find the discount bin, basket, or stash early in your trip—like first
  • Ask where the lower priced (not lower quality fabrics) are; sometimes, they aren’t labeled.
  • Dig through the “regularly priced” fabric. The gems are often hidden in between
  • Do some quick math; the total price is divided by the amount of fabric for the unit price per yard. It may not be truly a discount. This math is the truth serum.

Photo Credit: Rakimism

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