Improvisational refashion sewing is the best. No pattern, no rules, no risk. If it doesn't turn out, all I've lost is a dress I haven't worn in years. This particular top came from a maternity/nursing dress I bought on clearance at Target before Elena was born. It had a low draped front tank top with an empire waist with a same fabric belt and a gathered skirt. The fabric is a rayon lycra. It's very stretchy and drapey.
My summer capsule wardrobe is pretty well set. The only way I can justify sewing for myself is to make it cost nothing at all and be a useful everyday piece. The color of this will carry into fall with a cardigan or jacket so that is a bonus.
As for construction, like I said, this was improvisational, make-it-work kind of sewing. I used only the skirt and belt pieces of the dress. There was less fabric available than I thought so it had to be sleeveless. The bodice pieces of the Sofilantjes Otium Sweater worked great. The back piece was left as is except for removing about an inch in the width at the armholes (but not the depth). For the front pieces, I retraced the half pattern to give me a full sized front piece and then trimmed one shoulder off on the diagonal from a shoulder/neck point to the opposite side underarm.
EXCEPT, and there's always an exception with a refashion you know, except that I didn't have quite enough fabric for the full width on one of the front pieces. I was about 2 inches short. Oh well, I forged ahead saving that obstacle for later but thinking that this would probably not work out. I should also mention, that I cut the pieces reusing the original hem of the dress. Yay for not having to hem slinky rayon knit.
I sewed the front pieces to the back at the shoulders and draped it over myself to see if I was totally off-base and should just quit here. But no, it was looking pretty good and the odds of success were improving. So I used the belt to make one long band for the entire length of the front and back neck edges. I had 6" left and took it as another sign that this just might work out. For the armholes, I just turned them under and stitched them down with the double needle. I sewed the one side seam with the back and both front pieces. Then I sewed the other side seam with just the back and inner front piece and tried it back on to figure out what to do about the piece that was too short to reach the side seam.
A bit of playing around with forming some soft pleats and BAM! I pinned it well, carefully took it off, folded the edge under on that front piece and just sewed it down. I was pretty please with myself. Projects like this are so fun to me. The only thing I wish is that it was just a bit longer, but that was all the fabric there was and it's all good. I just feel a little self conscious in such a body hugging shape with a large-ish chest. I am very happy to report that the crossover holds very well and doesn't gape open or shift around and need re-adjusting at all.
Do you like to just wing it like this or do you need a pattern? It's funny because I'm not all that spontaneous or adventurous in most things, but refashion sewing is my safe place to get crazy. Not only do I feel comfortable experimenting like this, but I get quite a little thrill from it. Nothing ventured, nothing gained, right? I'll call this one a gain.