Makes: a Simplicity 1366 a sweet summery cami

I’ll be honest, until recently I had no interest in camis. They were just another 90s throwback. But I blinked and now suddenly they’re everywhere. And I’ve been converted – I’m starting to wonder why I don’t own 10 already.

I’ve gone from not having any interest in camis whatsoever to being particularly obsessed with them.

But in my defence, don’t they just look effortlessly cool? Well, not on me of course. But on most people 🙂

Simplicity 1366 camisole handmade wardrobe with Sew Essential

And with summer coming, I’m not quite sure my wardrobe is up to scratch.

Especially in the camisole/cami department.

Simplicity 1366 camisole handmade wardrobe with Sew Essential

So when the lovely Lucy at Sew Essential reached out to me to sew up something to show off Sew Essential’s range of fabrics and patterns, the idea of a summery cami zoomed straight to the top of my sewing hit list.

Looking through all the patterns, Simplicity 1366 really caught my eye. I’ve seen this pattern crop up a few times (though, Beth at Sew DIY is particularly to blame for starting my addiction) and really like the shape of the cami neckline.

Simplicity 1366 is designed by Cynthia Rowley and features a fairly elaborate skirt (not quite my thang) and two tops – this cami and a rather fetching 3/4 length sleeve top.

Simplicity 1366 camisole handmade wardrobe with Sew Essential

The cami is cut on the bias and slightly flared – you can see in this photo that the hem slightly curves out. Though in a fabric with more drape you probably wouldn’t even notice.

It’s finished with a facing and two rouleau loops for the straps.

It’s pretty basic in terms of pieces – there’s only 3 pattern pieces (front/back, facing, straps) and 6 fabric pieces cut out. But man, it’s deceptively hard.

Simplicity 1366 camisole handmade wardrobe with Sew Essential

Rouleau loops.

My nemesis.

I’m not even sure you can have a sewing nemesis, but if I had to have one it would be rouleau loops. They’re like the footballer’s wives of sewing – pretty and simple, but super high maintenance.

Simplicity 1366 camisole handmade wardrobe with Sew Essential

Don’t get me wrong – I love the effect. I just don’t love the utter fiddliness  of them. It took me 5 tries to get 2 loops. I even used this BHL trick, which made it better, but it was still no picnic. I went to bed dreaming of rouleau loops.

That can’t be good.

Simplicity 1366 camisole handmade wardrobe with Sew Essential

Anyway, apart from the loops of doom, this sewed up really quickly. The fabric was really well behaved and a real joy to sew with – fluid but not too slippery.

Win for me I think.

I went for a lovely drapey crepe from Sew Essential. I don’t usually gravitate towards crepe, but this had such a great drape, and the crepe effect (which I’m not always a fan of) is really subtle.

Simplicity 1366 camisole handmade wardrobe with Sew Essential

Simplicity 1366 camisole handmade wardrobe with Sew Essential

The super lovely Lucy at Sew Essentials is giving away a £25 gift voucher to one lucky winner – perfect for anyone wanting inject some summer into their sewing horizons.

To enter just let us know what pattern from Sew Essential’s massive pattern collection would be on your summer make hit list in the comments section below. The contest will close on the 31st of May and is open to UK only (or UK addresses at least).

I only ever share products and people I think you’ll like as much as I do (because sharing is caring). The pattern and fabric for this make was kindly provided by Sew Essential (they’re nice like that). All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own. 

sweet Summery Simplicity 1366 Camisole

Pattern: Simplicity c/o Sew Essential

Fabric: navy medium weight crepe c/o Sew Essential

What did you like most about the pattern?

I’ve not used a ‘big four’ commercial pattern in ages so it was nice to remind myself that they are pretty legit. I was impressed with the drafting on this and the instructions were pretty straight forward.

It was also a nice treat to use a paper pattern. I don’t mind printing, cutting and taping PDF patterns together, but this did get the job done much quicker!

What changes did you make to the pattern or CONSTRUCTION?

I followed the pattern and instructions pretty much as was written. I did use French seams with a 3/8″ seam allowance. The pattern just says to sew and finish the seams, but I’m on a real mission to make pretty insides so I wanted something a bit more special.

I really wanted to avoid any bulkiness or unsightly lines showing so just left off the interfacing. The facings are definitely not bulky, so that’s a win I think (or have I just committed the biggest faux pas ever? Why are facings always interfaced? Does anyone know? So many sewing questions!)

What are you most proud of?

Those rouleau loops. They were SUCH a pain to make, but I’m really happy with how they turned out.

What will you do differently next time?

I love this pattern and am so happy how it came out. I’d definitely be up for making it again and have some delicious teal silk I bought while I was in Sydney.

I’d like to make a sway back adjustment as the fabric pools around the lower back. I’d also be tempted to lengthen the pattern by an inch or so, just to make it a little more versatile.

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  • Rouleau loops really are a nightmare. Maybe you need a “turn everything gadget”. I bought one a few months ago and they’re ACE! I made some belt loops last week without any drama. The cami looks great. I’m thinking of making a Sewaholic Davie dress soon.

    • I think you may be right about getting a gadget (plus, I do love a good gadget). That Davie dress looks ace! Good luck.

      • I think it’s called Turn-It-All and I got mine from Amazon. Not really a gadget as such. More like 3 tubes with 3 sticks in different sizes that you feed the fabric through and turn right side out. Highly recommend it.

  • This looks so delicate and pretty! You should definitely make more 🙂 I’m in love with the Fifi set by Tilly and the Buttons, it looks perfect for hot summer nights and I’ve seen some hacks to turn the cami top into a daytime came 😉

  • Well that’s not easy. So many patterns to choose from. I found several – both for me and my kids.
    Vogue 1496 or Vogue 1501 for me (and my oldest daughter)
    New Look 6444 for my youngest daughter and unisex Burda 9393 for my two youngest.

  • Love the cami. So versatile. I’m still keen to try Grainlines Scout tee or Lark tee, feeling behind the times not having tried them yet!

  • Love your cami, it looks like a great wardrobe staple. I’m in need of some basics too – tshirts mainly, so I’d like to make the Lark tee.

  • Kudos on mastering those rouleau loops! Looks great!
    Well I’ve my eye on some maternity wear (I resent paying for a whole other ‘temporary’ wardrobe of RTW!)
    so I fancy Butterick 6226. Would be such a blessing to win! 🙂

  • I live really close to Sew Essential! I’m wanting to try the Tilly and the Buttons Bettine dress and would make it in one of the lovely colours of John Kaldor Coast fabric. Me made may has made me realise that I have lots of gaps in my wardrobe – summer clothes being a major one.

  • I’d be torn between simplicity 1366 for the boxy top or the Alder shirtdress from Grainline.

    The cami looks fab, very sofisticated

  • It’s lahvley, I admired it in person on Saturday! And I want that crepe fabric now.

    I’d pick Vogue 1488, a suer cool shirt dress with wrap front.

  • Perfect cami, good for you! I am torn between Tilly’s Coco and Grainline’s Lark tee, as I’m trying to get into knits… Or then again…I’ve been looking at the Alder shirtdress for months. Anyway, I would love to choose something!! Great giveaway, thanks.

  • Yes I have the gadget and it’s great. I want the simplicity pattern because I have some silk for the cami, but I also want to make the t in silk for the summer. Fingers crossed.

  • I love your cami! I’ve been wanting to try a Sewaholic pattern for ages so I’d choose one of their lovely dresses x

  • I would love the Misses Jacket Burda Sewing Pattern No. 6747. not because it’s summery but because I would like to make my first coat ready for winter, so knowing me I’d have to start this summer!

  • So many amazing patterns, but I’d have to go for the kwik sew camisole and panties. I’ve been wanting to delve into the world of underwear sewing and these look super flattering for the small of bust.

  • Love the colour and fit of this cami. In my current state of being 6 months pregnant, I would probably select Burda Pattern No. 6957 or Simplicity Pattern 1360 which should hopefully work well as nursing tops/dresses too!

  • Hi
    It’s a really hard choice but I fancy new look 6351 which is almost like no choice because it includes trousers, skirt, jacket and top!
    well done on the cami – looks great
    Jenny (ig:silverbellsandcockleshells)

  • I would choose: Mens Shirts Burda Sewing Pattern No. 6931. Size 34-50 as I have been practicing selfish sewing for a while now and my boyfriend is desperate for me to make something for him….it’s too hard when there are so many lovely dresses to be made 🙂

  • Oxford was so rainy and cool last summer I think maybe a summer jacket is in order! I saw a girl yesterday in a sleeveless trench I really liked the look of – maybe the Sewaholic Robson? Also, why ARE facings always interfaced?! Facings in general are unpleasant mystery to me. Your cami is lovely though! I can’t tell at all that it’s hiding MY sewing nemesis! ^^