A Plantain Tank

Have you guys been seeing all the great versions of the Plantain top popping up lately? The Plantain is the latest pattern from the French indie sewing pattern company Deer and Doe. The best news is that it’s a free pattern – hurrah!!

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It’s a cute top for knit or sweatshirt fleece with options for long-sleeves and short-sleeves and a funky elbow patch. I cut short sleeves out of my fabric intending to make the short sleeve version, however when I tried the tee on to check the size, I loved it without any sleeves at all. Given it is the middle of summer here in Australia, a tank version will get plenty of wear.

This top was really simple to sew. The instructions are great – very clear and with plenty of tips if you’re new to sewing knits. I used my measurements to determine that I should cut a size 38 in the bust and grade out to a size 42 at the waist and hips. I only used my sewing machine to sew this top – mainly because of laziness (there was red thread on my overlocker/serger and I couldn’t be bothered to change it….). I used my double needle on the bottom hem and tried a new technique for finishing which came from this great tutorial from Abby @ Things for Boys. The double needle does not like backstitching and I was finding that my double needle sewing was coming unstitched on clothes I’ve made previously. Abby suggests that once the seam is finished, pull the top thread through to the back side and tie both threads together to secure. A simple tip that will hopefully improve the longevity of my sewing.

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To create the colour-blocked back piece, I slashed the pattern across the back and added seam allowance to both pieces. Then to add interest, I added a floral knit pocket at the front (I used the pocket piece from my Wiksten tank pattern). The green and pink knit fabric is Premium Japanese Knit from my local Spotlight and it a lovely mid-weight – light but not too light that it becomes a nightmare to sew. The floral fabric is leftover from Miss A’s Little Betty top.

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I LOVE the fit of this top – fitted in the right places and flowing where people who’ve had two babies might like it to be 😉 I’m planning to sew more of these tops, I think I’ll try a curved hem at the back of the next version.

Looking for some more Plantain inspiration? I love this version in sweatshirt fleece by Shino of Nutta!, this 3/4 sleeve version by Anna of Paunnet and this long sleeve version by April of Modern Handmade.

As for the lovely patterns at Deer and Doe, I’m eyeing off the Aubepine dress next. I think it would be gorgeous with leggings and boots when the weather cools down in this part of the world.

So, have you given the Plantain top a go yet?

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18 comments

  1. So I have a lanthanides shirt going up on my blog in a couple hours and we did the exact same thing to the back. Great minds think alike! I love your color combo and your tiny pocket. It all turned out great!

  2. Love this version! The color blocking and pocket is perfect. I have this printed and can’t wait to try it. And that dress pattern caught my eye for next one too

  3. Lovely! I wasn’t feeling the love for the sleeves in this summer, but your tank looks wonderful! I’ve got their shorts pattern on the go ATM – they do have lovely patterns!

  4. Thank you for mentioning my Plantain! I love your version! I thought tank would be cute when I sewed mine 🙂 Oh, and I also have been tempted by Aubepine dress… so cute!

  5. Hmm, I totally remember commenting but I don’t see it. Anyway, thanks for the mention! And I love the sleeveless version–I was wondering how that would look and it’s great! Perfect for warm weather.

  6. Hi Renee! Love the colour blocking and the floral pocket! Spotlight does have some good Japanese fabric currently. I have the Datura top cut out ready to sew, hopefully will get around to it after KCW.

  7. Great interpretation! I live in SA too and I had to remind myself that the long sleeved version with elbow patches was completely impractical when we were in the middle of a heat wave! Haha! 🙂

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