If you’re like me, you love finding new ways to utilize your sewing library. That’s why I started designing my patterns in the first place. I found myself time and time again buying patterns that were the exact pattern I just purchased 2 weeks before, except for a slightly altered piece here or there. After I had the realization that these companies were all but ripping me off… Okay, not ripping me off, but selling me very similar patterns that to me did not justify another $10-14, I decided to start my own pattern company and offer my customers as many style variations as I possible could within one basic design. And so Ragamuffin Patterns was born!
The Bad Wrap crop top, cardigan, and swimwear is no exception. In fact, after I finalized the pattern and tutorial I kept on playing with it. Today, I am excited to share with you all the styles that didn’t make it to the final pattern and tutorial.
Before We Start
I will be walking you through these pattern hacks with easy-to-follow steps to create your pattern pieces to achieve the looks shown. However, I have also created an expansion pack with printable (or projectable) pattern pieces and graphicly designed pictures & written tutorial. You don’t need to purchase the expansion pack to create these looks.
The Halter Top
The halter top style started while I was digging through my swim stash. I have about 10+ years of swim scraps in bins and I thought it was just about time to use them up. After pulling out the swim pieces I was planning on using,I just couldn’t decided on a the Bad Wrap style I wanted. As I was staring at the rainbow scales I had left over from my days sewing & selling custom appareal, it came to me. The fabric just about screamed at me to make a halter top.
However, the pattern I was just about to release and was attempting to make promo pieces for did not have a halter top option–So I made one. And now I’m sharing it with you.
*Note* these styles can be done in either swimwear or casual daily wear. If you are planning on using it for swimwear, make sure you include 1:1 ratio swim elastic in all your seams.
Hack #1: The Halter Top
To trasform the Bad Wrap into a halter top, simply place the wrap tie piece along the shoulder line of the front and use it to extend the pattern 18″ to create the halter neck tie. The length is technically a personal preference and completely up to you (or your fabric… especially if you are working with scraps). I’ve found 18″ to be a perfect length to easily tie and adjust if needed.
If your fabric dosen’t allow for the strap to be continuous and one piece with the front, you can cut it separate and sew it to the shoulder.
You’ll need to do this for all four front pieces.
The only other thing you’ll need to adjust is the back. Since this will be a halter top you don’t need the entire back piece, so fold it in half even with the side seam. If you are making this to use as a swimwear top, you’ll want need to move the back fold line over 1/4″ – 1/2″ depending on the support you are looking for.
Now that you’ve created your new pattern pieces go back to the Bad Wrap tutorial and follow the instructions.
S Hook Back Closure
While I was admiring my new halter top I wondered how I could make it even better. This type of thing happens more often than I can count. I’m easily distracted when my creative jucies start flowing–which is why my patterns have so many style variation. It’s kind of a problem. But, hopefully a good problem to have…LOL
I decided I wanted the halter top to not only be reversible, but interchangable with other tops. That’s where the S hooks come in. With the addtion of the S Hook back the halter top now becomes two pieces, which means you are able to mix and match tops for endless style and color combos!
Hack #2: S Hook Back Closure
This Hack is going to be a little more invoved and require a bit more effort than Hack #1. You’ll also need a little bit of hardware. Since this is an “S” hook closure guess what you’re going to need? Give yourself 50 points and a high-five if you said “S” hooks.
S hooks come in a variety of sizes. My shop has 1″, 5/8″ & 3/4″ S hooks availible, but you can find them at most local fabric and sewing supply shops. The size of your S hooks will determin the alteration you will make to the back piece.
Step One: Alter/ redraw the back
Extend the bottom 1.5″ past the fold line, and make a straight line up using the measurement of the opening on the S hook 0.5″ seam allowance. Draw a straight line back to the original fold line to connect the newly extended portion with the original back.
Redraw the top of the back with a curved ruler (french curve ruler). Starting 1/4″ in from the side of the back pattern piece and connecting to the spot where the extended portion meets the fold.
If you just read this and are like… umm, no thanks! I’m not redrawing that. You’re in luck because I already did the work for you.
You can download the back and other fun add on in the Bad Wrap Expansion Pack
Sew the entire top as directed in the Bad Wrap tutorial.
Slide the S hook on the extended portion of the back. Make sure the open end of the hook is facing down. Then fold the extended portion over 2″ making the S hook back 1″ smaller then the original cut on the fold back piece that comes with the pattern. This allows for the additional room the S hooks have that will bring it back to the original width.
Once the S hook is in place, pin the back and gently pull the S hook so the back is tight. Then place another pin as close to the S hook as possible. With the presser foot directly against the S hook, sew a straight stitch to secure the hook in place. Backstitch over this area 2 times to secure the hook in place.
Cut the extra fabric off and zig-zag stitch over the raw edge to make sure everything is as secure as it can be. This is a highly stressed area and you don’t want any wardobe malfuntions, if you know what I mean.
Create a loop on the other halter top piece so the S hook has something to, well hook on to. Do this by folding the back extended area over 2″. Hook the S hook to the fold and pin it in place but leave about 1/2″ from the edge of the hook to allow room to slide the hook in the loop. Sew it in place. Then remove the extra fabric and once again zig-zag over the raw edge to secure. That’s it!
You can get a little more funky here by adding hooks to each side so there is 100% interchangibility with each piece. No mattern which one you put on it will have the ability to either hook or be hooked. If you do this, just make sure the loop is slightly less tight so there is room for both the hooks to share the space. You will not be hooking both. One will not be use and just sit against your back while the other one is hooked in.
Hack #3: Strapy Back
Creating the strapy back style was a no brainer. I mean, once you start making swimwear it is a natural progression to want the front strap to continue to the back, and from there why not add more than one? How about two… Maybe we can squeeze three in there and then criss cross them for a funcky modern take. The strapy back is a fun, creative, and super easy way to create even more style variation with this pattern.
Just a reminder, if you don’t want to do the math or mess around with pattern edits, the expansion pack is available and only 3 bucks.
Step One: Cut out the desired number of straps you’d like to add to the back of your Bad Wrap. You can use the pattern piece provided in the expansion pack or create your own using a few measurements.
Skinny strap 1.25″ wide
Think strap 2.5″ wide
Wide strap 3″ wide
To get the length of your strap, measure the distance from the top of the shoulder to where you want your strap to attach.
Step Two: Place the straps right sides facing and sew along the long raw edge. Then turn your straps out so the seam is enclosed in the strap.
For swimwear, you will need to add swim or rubber elastic in the seam. This is 1:1 ratio and should be done with a serger as you sew the seam together.
Step Three: To ensure proper strap placement, refer to the marks provided on the back pattern piece in the expansion pack. In case you don’t have the expansion pack, strap placement may require some trial and error. Begin by dividing the back in half and use that as a preliminary guide for strap placement. Then, make necessary adjustments to achieve the desired style.
Step Four: Design the back strap look and sew them into the front.
That’s it. All done!
These styles are all reversible and interchangable with each other and is amazing paired with the FREE Based Circle Skirt. I’ve also made it reversible!