In Sewing

Tiny Pocket(less) Tank in 1930s Repro Fabric

I’ve been meaning to make some really simple woven tank tops for ages now, and I don’t know why I waited this long to finally do it because the Tiny Pocket Tank by Grainline Studio is a serious summer staple! Now that I’ve made a few fitting changes to the pattern, this is definitely going in my “TNT” drawer and will be made again and again. …and again.


The fabric I used has been in my stash since last October and I bought because I loved the print, but had no idea what I’d ever use it for. But hey, it’s got little dogs on it so naturally it was coming home with me! I look much better in deep eggplant purples, but this print has a few other colors sprinkled in that make it fun to coordinate with warmer solids, like bright golden yellow (one of my favorites! Well, second to mustard yellow but I digress).


As I mentioned, I did make some fitting adjustments to this pattern to accommodate all my Lady Turtle issues (rounded upper back, forward sloping narrow shoulders, swayback, etc). Since I already had a sleeveless dress pattern that I made endless adjustments to (and pretty much perfected the fit on), I decided to trace that pattern over the Tiny Pocket Tank and blend them together for an easy custom fit.


In spirit it’s still a Tiny Pocket Tank, but in fairness I did alter every. single. seam. on the pattern (pretty minimally, though) in order to get a fit I was super happy with. Luckily, Jen at Grainline makes beautiful, well drafted patterns so I had an excellent base point to make my adjustments! I made one muslin from the original pattern then traced my mash-up version to make this wearable muslin, which is completely and perfectly wearable, though I think I will shorten my bust darts by a half inch next time if I’m being overly picky.


Adding darts to the back neckline was really the only thing I needed to do to my muslin, but rather than pinch fabric out, pin, mark, and retrace on the same muslin, I did what I thought was easiest and blended my pattern with Jen’s. It was a shortcut that really worked out well and resulted in a fantastic fit (if I do say so myself) on only the second try. I’ll take that!


Outfit Details:
Tank – Grainline Tiny Pocket Tank
Jeans – American Eagle
Sweater – J. Crew
Headscarf – Thrift Store
Glasses – c/o Victory Optical
(20% off all frames with code LUCKY20)


Okay now back to the fabric – I love it! The little dogs remind me of a 1930s version of Spunky from Rocko’s Modern Life (I used to love that show!). Toy Box III is the name of the collection (by Sara Morgan for Blue Hill Fabrics) and it must be out of print now because I’m not finding an online shop who carries it, sorry! If you have your heart set on finding it, maybe Etsy or eBay will have results? Speaking of fabric, I wish I had a little piece of yellow and white striped cotton to use for the tiny pocket because that would have been adorable! I might actually go back and do that later but I’m not sure yet.


I have a ton of super busy cotton prints in my stash that feel a weeeeee bit too crazy to wear a lot of (like on a whole dress or button-up shirt), so a woven tank like this is really the perfect match! You can pair it with a solid cardigan and some jeans and that really tones everything down. …not that I have ANY problem wearing large chunks of utterly ridiculous prints, in fact I’m probably known for that, but sometimes you just want to wear a smaller amount of cutesy kiddie dogs. …or unicorns (um yes, unicorns will be on my next Tiny Pocket Tank).


I go through phases where I want absolutely nothing to do with jeans, and then other times when I wear the same pair for four days in a row. Currently I’m on a days-in-a-row jeans kick. I think you have to be in the right mood/mindset to tackle a project like sewing your own jeans, but I DID buy the Ginger pattern pretty recently so it’s going to happen some day. …maybe. …probably maybe a lot later in the someday future. …maybe.


Until then I’ll be having a grand old time sewing super simple things for summer that I can finish in a day and get some serious wear out of! I’m sure I’m not the only one who switches gears as soon as the summer heat rolls in and wants to sew nothing but instant gratification projects. That’s definitely the gear I’m in right now (which is why I keep putting off my Archer shirt comeback), and when I can pair simple sewing with quilting cotton you know I’m a happy camper!

What types of things are you sewing lately?


  • This is so cute! And what a great basic pattern to have in your pocket- it will be so easy to make one any time you have the urge! Perfect!

  • Could that fabric be any cuter? I rather think not! Awww – what a sweet, charming top. The tiny pups make me smile ear-to-ear and if she could read and understand blogs, I know Annie would adore them to bits, too (natch! :)).

    I hope that you’re having a beautiful summer!

    ♥ Jessica

    • Thanks, Jessica! Tell Annie I said hi, and I hope you ladies are having a fantastic summer as well! 🙂

  • Piper

    I have lost my sewing joy lately, but have some kitty fabric in my stash. A project like this might be just the thing. Thank you for inspiring me!

    • Yes! That’s my favorite thing to hear 🙂 I’m happy to have inspired you sew something, especially with fun fabric 🙂 🙂

  • nan

    Gorgeous tank top. Love those glasses too.

  • This is adorable and completely you! I think those darts in the back neckline might be the solution to a fitting problem I’m having! I’ll have to try that! Thank you for sharing.

    • Thanks! I find most things that have a bit of a scooped back neckline just tent off my neck if I don’t put darts in. Once I identified the unique shape of my back (well, more unique than a dress form!) it was so much easier to research how to address the fitting issues I was having.

  • Oooh, love that print!! The tiny dogs are so cute, and the simple lines of this cute top show the fabric off to perfection… Such a great look! 😀


    bonita of Lavender & Twill

  • I needed a frock like your top today! It’s too hot now, and I don’t want any seams anywhere, I wonder if this could lengthen ok?!

    • Yeah I’m feeling the same way with this hot weather!! Yes, I think the general shape of the top would make it pretty easy to lengthen into a dress or tunic successfully 🙂

  • Really cute, I like how you combine colors and various garments

  • jannapyj

    I know what you mean about instant Summer sewing. It almost seems like cheating somehow. :o) I just bought the cutest Veggie print fabric today to sew up a skirt…I’m hoping to sew it up real quick on Friday!


    • Oooo a veggie print skirt sounds adorable and perfect for summer!! 🙂

  • Sarah Koch

    Rocco’s Modern Life! I loved that show. Your top is yet another reason to sew the Tiny Pocket Tank, adorable.

    • Me too! I should see if I can find old episodes online somewhere. It’s so funny to go back and watch your favorite kid cartoons as an adult. The experience is usually completely different! I’m often surprised by how much adult humor they sneak in that went waaaaay over my head as a kid lol.

  • Oooo, I love this! Nice job with the matching bias tape, too. Lately, I’m all about comfy jersey and linen separates.

    • Thanks, Sarah! I would definitely like to sew with more linen. …and jersey too actually. Definitely good summer fabrics!