Sew Along with Us: Creating Your Collage Gather Top

Whether you're here for guidance from our Sewing Project Kits for the Collage Gather Top or you've downloaded the PDF Sewing Pattern, here's a Sew Along Blog Post to help you navigate any hurdles you may encounter.

In this blog post, we'll guide you through the creation of the Collage Gather Top. And the best part? We've included step-by-step images to make this sewing journey a breeze. Let's get started! 🧵✂️

If you have any specific questions or would like further improvements, feel free to ask! 😊


Before we dive into the sewing process, let's take a second to check a few things off.

Fabric Preparation

Properly preparing your fabric is crucial for a successful sewing project. Before cutting into your chosen fabric, be sure to wash and iron it. This step ensures that your fabric is clean, free of any sizing or shrinkage, and ready to take shape as the Collage Gather Top. It's a small step that makes a big difference in the final result.

Pattern Adjustments:

Now, let's chat about the tweaks I made to the pattern. So, I ended up sewing a size Small, even though my chest measurements are 37 inches. According to the pattern, that would typically line up with a Medium size. But you know what? I wanted a closer fit, something that hugs my body and shoulders nicely, giving that flattering silhouette we all love.

To achieve that, I decided to go with a smaller size, and I made a couple of adjustments to the front and back panel center folds, trimming off about 1/2 inch. It might not sound like a lot, but it makes a noticeable difference in how the top fits.

Sewing Pattern and Adjustments made using pencil and garment ruler

And, because I'm on the taller side at 175cm, I added an extra inch to the front, back, and side panels. This extra length ensures that the top doesn't ride up, which I now struggle with on my first wearable toile of the Gather Top.

Toile Recommendations:

Have you bought our Project Sewing Kit?

Before you dive into that gorgeous, sustainable, and elegant fabric, here's a little tip from me to you – consider making a wearable toile first.

Trust me, I get it. That fabric in your kit is absolutely stunning, and you want to do it justice. But making a toile is like a dress rehearsal. It allows you to perfect the fit, work out any kinks in the pattern, and make sure everything is just right before you cut into that precious material.

Even if you haven't bought a kit, and you're here for the Sew Along help for the Gather Top, consider it. This pattern is a great scrap busting project, and a wearable toile in a collage, would look wonders. 

Let's get into it...

Fabric and Sewing Pattern laid out on ironing board

First of all, get your pattern ready. Measure your size and work out which size you'd like to go with. (If you're using our Project Kit boxes, you should have an idea as you bought within a certain size range)

Prepare your fabric, ironed and ready to layout your pattern pieces out. Whether you like to follow the layout suggestions within the Sewing Pattern or you like to wing it, like I do, lay out your pieces and cut accordingly.

Pattern weights on a sewing pattern and fabric, holding it down

As per the Pattern instructions, they recommend gathering all your side panels first. Do all four at the same time, as it just saves time later on. 

A Pattern piece with a cut out bit of fabric

Sewing Machine on the table with a thread, side panels cut out of fabric ready to sew

Rosie's hands and arms threading through the fabric into the sewing machine to create gathers

Be sure to sew three lines on a loose stitch so you can easily pull your threads and gather the panel together.

 Rosie showing her gathering one of the side panels up close to the camera

Once you've completed all four side panels with gathering.

Work your way through each shoulder panel, you will have two for the front and two for the back. I usually work through the front first. Pin right sides together and move your gathers out evenly before stitching.

Attaching the shoulder panels to the gathered side panels with pins

Once you've sewn it together, check your gathering is okay and press the seam with your iron.

A finished sewn shoulder panel with side panel laying on the table

If you have an overlocker, I'd recommend finishing your seams as you go along. If you don't have an overlocker, check your sewing machine for an 'overlocker-like' stitch. It's not essential but it doesn't make your seams look a lot neater as a finished result.

Rosie overlocking her seams on the overlocker machine.

Once you've stitched both of your front shoulder panels to their side panels, grab your front panel pattern piece and stitch together. Follow your notch guides to line them up. The straight edge of your pattern pieces should be the sides stitched to the main front panel.

An example of the shoulder/side panel seam overlocked, laying on the table

Following your Sewing Pattern instructions, repeat the last step so that you have both side panels attached to your main front panel. Press your seams and finish with an overlocker is possible.

A finished front side with both side panels attached, laying on the table.

Wrong side of the front panels, stitched and overlocked laid out on the table

Be sure to press all your seams, it'll make all the difference to the finish of the garment and how it sits.

Pressing seams with iron on the front and back panel pattern pieces.

 Repeat all the steps with the side panels with the main back panel. You should at the end have two finished 'Front' and 'Back' sides to your top.

 Pinning both front and back shoulder panels together.

With ride sides together, pin and stitch your top should seams together. This is from your neckline to the end of your armhole. Finish with an overlocker if possible.

Then move on to preparing your armbands.

With right sides together, meet your two raw short ends together and stitch your arm band into a conjoined loop. Press the seam open. 

Ironing the stitching down for the arm band.

Then fold your armband in half, with wrong sides together and press with your iron.

A armband folded over with wrong sides together and pressed, laying on ironing board.

With right sides together, stitch your armband in to your armholes.

Stitching in the armband to the armhole on the top.

If you have an overlocker, finish the stitching around the armband.

Overlocking the stitching from armband to top.

Be sure to press your armband stitching. Stitch your seam around the armband as pattern instructions show.

Ironing the hem of the top on the ironing board.

Finish the bottom of your top with a rolled hem. Be sure to finish with press of the iron to flatten it.

Finish your top with the neckline. Right sides together, stitching your neckband around the raw edge of the neckline.

If it's your first time with doing a neckline with bias tape, check out a full break down tutorial from Matchy Matchy Sewing Club.

Bias Binding a Neckline on the top, pins are holding the binding to the top

Fold and Roll your neck binding to finish your neckline and use clips or pins to hold in place whilst you sew. Be sure to use your iron to help you press a neat fold around your neckline.

Rolled bias binding around neckline, held by clips before stitching in.

Be sure to take it slow around the neckline, to avoid any fabric shifting. If you've not done bias binding before, it's best to take it slow as you get used to it.

A neatly ironed and stitching bias neckline finished.

Last but not least, finish your top off with a Sewing Label. In our Project Sewing Kits, we've provided a pack of Sew Anonymous 'Slow Life' Multipack Sewing Labels, and they are perfect for this fabric that I've used in the photo. 

A finished Collage Gather Top with a Sewing Label stitched in saying 'Consciously Made'

I hope this Sew Along has been your trusty guide, helping you breeze through any tricky points in the sewing pattern.

If you've stitched up a fabulous Collage Gather Top, I'm genuinely excited to see your finished masterpiece! Share your creation on Facebook or Instagram and tag us @SewEcoFabrics. It's one of my personal favourites, and I've got quite a collection to mix and match with various outfits. Versatile, easy-to-sew patterns like this are absolute gems!

Don't forget to drop a comment below, whether you sailed smoothly or hit a snag. We're here to assist! And, remember, if you ever need a helping hand, just shoot us an email at

Happy sewing, fabulous creators! 🧵🌟


1 comment


I hope you don’t mind me saying this. It is with a good heart. I came along because I saw the pattern and thought I might be interested in it ( I am). I don’t think that your bias binding explanation is sufficient for sewers using it for the first time. I think you really need to break the steps down more for this part of this post. Best wishes India

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