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Riley Boat-Neck Crop Top Sewalong

Riley is perfect for beginners or anyone wanting to make something quickly.

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Prepare to Sew

Let’s sew up Riley! Riley is a woven boat-neck crop top with a cinched waist that looks great paired with jeans, shorts, and skirts or layered over dresses. To cinch the waist, thread a tie through a casing with two buttonhole openings at each side seam. This top is a quick, fun sew, finished with single-fold bias tape at the neckline and armholes.

In this sewalong, you’ll see each step from the instructions in action and get some extra tips to help you sew. Tip: keep the instructions nearby while you watch!

You’re going to learn how to:

  • Adjust bust darts

  • Sew bust darts

  • Finish the neckline and armholes with single fold bias tape

  • Create a casing and ties

Riley is an Advanced Beginner sewing pattern. While this pattern is beginner-friendly, we assume that you’re not an absolute beginner and you have some experience cutting out fabric, finishing seams, and using your machine and tools. If you need extra help along the way, click the “Links” tab below the video player or hop over to the Community to post a question.

You’re NOT going to learn how to:

  • Cut out and mark your fabric

  • Use basic sewing tools and supplies

If you need additional help with the skills required for this class, click the “Links” tab below the video player for a helpful list of tutorials.

General Info:

  • All seam allowances are 5/8” for wovens or 3/8” for knits unless otherwise stated.

  • Stitch settings can vary from machine to machine, so we recommend testing on scraps. Use a notebook to capture what stitch length and width work best with your chosen fabric.

  • We show finishing seams with a serger because it’s the quickest method while filming. If you don’t have a serger, a zigzag stitch works just as well!


Fabrics to shop: Lightweight or medium-weight woven fabrics such as linen, chambray, batiste, lawn, voile, linen blends, rayon challis, cupro, and Tencel.

Fabrics to avoid: The most important quality to look for is the fabric’s drape. Most of the recommended fabrics have some drape so that the top is not too stiff and boxy. Wondering how to find a fabric’s drape? Read this article.

Cotton Double Gauze in Dusty Blue from Stonemountain and Daughter Fabrics.

Atelier Brunette Embroidered Double Gauze in Stardust from Stonemountain and Daughter Fabrics.

Viscose Linen Noil in Quartz from Blackbird Fabrics (left) and Wildflower Crinkle Cotton in Biscuit from Blackbird Fabrics (right).

Riley Boat-Neck Crop Top Sewalong

Here’s what you’ll need for this project:

  • Riley pattern

  • All-purpose polyester sewing thread

  • sewing machine needle

  • safety pin or bodkin

  • 2 5/8 yards 1/2” (13mm) single fold bias tape

  • (optional) loop turner

Work alongside other sewists by participating in the Seamwork community. Ask and answer questions, share your progress, get inspired by real-life sewists, and post your finished projects.

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