Style Arc’s Cate’s Cousin Top

Today I am sharing a top I made this weekend (along with a bunch of other things, because apparently I am an incredibly fast sewer) and my latest pair of Style Arc Misty Jeans. This is actually a Style Arc outfit! The top is Cate’s Cousin Top. It’s a long-sleeve cowl neck top with a dropped shoulder.


I actually made two Style Arc tops this weekend. I will share the other later this week.

Out of the two tops, I prefer this one and am actually wearing it right now. Construction was really simple on this top. You bind the back neckline, sandwich the back shoulder in between the cowl and the shoulder piece, sew the shoulder seam, put the sleeves on in the flat, sew up the sides, hem, and done. It took me about an hour to make maybe less. I did everything on my serger, Rochester, except for the hems. I really want a coverstitch some day for really lovely hems. I just used a zigzag stitch on the hems. I’m not a fan of the twin needle to be honest.

The fabric I used is the same as the black fabric from my niece’s Christmas dress. It is a poly/rayon blend. It’s lightweight and drapes nicely. Perfect for a cowl neck.

My issue with the top is that it’s not as deep and drapey of a cowl as the line drawing suggests. There are two reasons this could be: 1) drafting in the larger sizes for Style Arc is different and reduces the cowl to fit on a certain fabric width or 2) my bust far too large for the b-cup and the cowl disappears. It could be both of these are the reason. The pattern pieces are all one piece: no cutting on the fold with Style Arc from my experience (I’ve made about four now and own about 8 patterns with no pieces cut on the fold). It did make for quite an ordeal to cut that front piece out. I actually had to drape my fabric over a chair to cut the bottom. I’m worried that might be the reason why the two tops are a little short; that or my bust is pulling them up…or both. I will be lengthening the top for the next time I make it and widening the cowl, because I like a deep cowl. When cowls are nicely draped and have a deeper drape to them, they look great on me.

I still love this top, though. It sounds like I am complaining, but these are minor issues. The dropped shoulder was something I wasn’t too sure about, but I think it looks great.

But enough talk, let’s see what I am talking about.

DSC_1600 DSC_1598 DSC_1596

DSC_1595 DSC_1593 DSC_1592

This is my first photoshoot in a while. I haven’t taken good blog pictures since my Hogwart’s cardigan in November… I haven’t wanted to go to the trouble and have so few spoons these days, but I found this photoshoot fun and it helped me remember that they can be fun as well. They are best done on weekend days, since they take so many spoons. Chronic pain is tough.

Let’s talk briefly about the Misty Jeans. I’m satisfied with the fit and won’t be tweaking it anymore. They are, after all, *just* pull on elastic waist jeans. Sure, I have wrinkles at my knees and above my back thighs. I should take care of those, but I just don’t care. They fit me better than any jeans I’ve bought in the store. I’ve got a couple more pairs cut out already. They are pretty darn comfortable and will be great for the big trip.

TL:DR Review

  • Pattern: Cate’s Cousin Top
  • Pros: Love the drop shoulder. Really simple to construct.
  • Cons: Definitely made for a smaller bust. Cowl isn’t as deep as the line drawings. Shirt is pretty short. Sparse instructions with very little information. For example, the instructions just say bind the back neckline and then refer to a tutorial on their website. Fair enough, but if you are a beginner, you might have an issue with them.
  • Make again?: Absolutely. Lengthening it and making the cowl deeper for next time.
  • Rating: pink-star-black-mdpink-star-black-mdpink-star-black-mdpink-star-black-mdwhite-star-black-md4/5 stars


Bonus picture with my Snapdragon skirt:




25 thoughts on “Style Arc’s Cate’s Cousin Top

  1. It looks great, I love dropped shoulders and the cowl neck looks fine as it is I thought, but maybe widening it, will give it more umph! Glad to hear you have enjoyed the photoshoot, it must be hard not feeling 100% but good for you, you try and do things.

    1. Thanks so much. 🙂 I do like some more umph. 😀

      It’s finally Spring here (not that we had a rough winter, though) so taking blog pictures will be easier weather wise. 🙂

  2. Ooooh! Bummer that the cowl’s not so deep, but it still looks good! I also had no idea the misty jeans had an elastic waistband – they’re fab! I’ve only tried one Style Arc pattern and was really surprised that I was taping together an ENTIRE front and back piece for a knit top, instead of half to cut on the fold. It ended up being great for stripe matching, but it does use a lot of paper.

    1. Thanks so much! 🙂

      Even though it is a serious waste of paper, I think I liked cutting one layer a lot more. I used a lot less fabric and will get another top out of the black fabric. I bet it’s fabulous for stripe matching. I’d love to make this in stripes. It will certainly make that cowl a lot more dramatic, if done well. 😀

  3. I think the fit on your jeans is good and the top looks great with the skirt. I can see what you mean about the depth of the cowl: next time I am sure you will nail it.

    1. Thanks, Manju! I think it will be great the next time too. I do really like this version though. 😃

  4. I think your top is very flattering. I especially like it with the Snap Dragon skirt, being a skirt lover myself. As to the cowl skimpiness … does it look “normal” when hanging on a hanger? In other words, taking your b**bs out of the equation. For a more drapey cowl, you probably will have to do an FBA, and then just rotate the resulting dart to the cowl for even more width/drapeyness.

    1. Thanks, Debbie. I’m pretty sure it’s 75% my b**bs. 😉 When it’s on a hanger, the cowl is deeper but not quite like the line drawing. Definitely doing an FBA and rotating the dart to the cowl as you suggest. Can’t wait to see the results. I have some red fabric that is screaming to be used for this. 😃

  5. I had totally overlooked the Cate’s Cousin pattern before now. I’m going to have to add it to my list. I love your version–it’s an interesting style but still basic enough to be a wardrobe workhorse.

    1. Thanks so much! I’m more of a skirt person and will likely be wearing it that way all the time. Cowl necks are great! Hope you like the pattern. ☺

    1. Thanks so much, Rachelle! It’s a great belt. I got it from Addition-Elle a couple of years ago. Good/stylish belts are difficult to find for plus sizes.

  6. The cowl looks great with the skirt! It’s strange that the cowl would be drafted so much higher than the line drawing. It’s a winter cowl! Keep out those annoying breezy gusts. But I think this pattern has some good potential once you drop the cowl so it sits proportionally on you.

I love comments, but sometimes I may be slow to respond/approve. I will respond though. :)

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