Songbird Tank Top Hack: No Gathers

Songbird Skirt and Tank Top sewing pattern

This hack is so simple that you might have already thought about it. If wanted to be sure it really IS this easy… it is. If you’re batch sewing and want to increase the speed, have a print that doesn’t love a CF seam, or you’re out of clear elastic, this hack is intuitive and simple. 

The Songbird Tank Top has a seam at the CF with a ⅜” (1 cm) seam allowance, AND some extra shaping to allow for the adorable gathers. All this hack does is eliminate that detail. You can do this same process for either length of Top.

You can make a separate pattern piece or just follow these steps right on your fabric, using chalk to mark your cut lines. 

  1. Fold the CF seam allowance under by ⅜” (1 cm), parallel to the grainline and straight up to the neckline, not curving around the notched area. 
  2. Align the Pattern piece on the new fold to the fold of your fabric (or mark a line for the CF on your paper, if you’re making a new pattern piece and align the pattern piece on the new fold to this line). 
  3. Trace around the hem, armscye, and the tiny top line of the strap. 
  4. Grab your Shelf Bra Pattern piece and align the CF and the tiny top line of the strap with the lines that you traced so far. Trace the neckline of the shelf bra onto your fabric (or paper!) to form the new neckline of the hacked Front. 
  5. That’s it! The new Songbird Top Front is Cut 1 on Fold, and you’ll skip all of Step 1 of the Songbird Top instructions. 

Knowing this little hack actually adds so much hacking potential to the Songbird Top. Make the neckline curved (and make the shelf Bra match, of course!) to skip the V shape, or make a single layer cami (skipping the shelf bra entirely) for the speediest Songbird that layers so comfortably with a bra or as sleepwear… so much possibility. 

Happy sewing! 


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