Ginger Made: Banksia Top

Hi, guys!  It’s getting COLD out, people– the puggies and I were freezing when we took our walk this morning!  Luckily, I finished this top just in time for chilly weather.  It’s Megan Nielsen’s Banksia Top, and it’s a pattern I’ve been wanting to make for a long time.  When Megan announced the sewalong, I jumped at the chance!

Isn’t my neighborhood lovely? Sigh…

I wanted to make this really feminine top a little more my style, so I used an inexpensive buffalo check flannel from A.K. Fabrics in the Garment District.  I love flannel– it reminds me of my grandfather, plus it’s so cuddly and soft that I feel like I’m wearing pajamas at work!  The fabric had a few downsides, though– I started noticing flaws in it as I was cutting things out, plus any time I had to use the seam ripper, small holes developed in the fabric.  Yikes!

Look, I’m turning my patented outside-photography-in-the-cold shade of purple!

I love this collar paired with the lowered neckline– it makes the top a little more grownup-looking, but still cute.  I used vintage buttons from Etsy, and decided to do 4 buttonholes instead of 3.  I made a size XS with a 1/2″ FBA, and next time I’ll give myself a smidge more room through the mid-back and armscyes (yeah, yeah, I made a muslin, but for some reason I didn’t put the sleeves on… d’oh!).

I’m always standing some crazy way that makes my clothes hang goofy. What’s up with that?

The pattern is really simple to put together and the directions are really clear.  I had a little trouble lining up the placket exactly using the 2nd method, but that’s just because I’m clumsy.  Like several other people, I had to extend the collar to get it to meet the placket in the middle.  I was careful to staystitch the neckline, so I’m pretty sure that it didn’t stretch out.  Not the end of the world or anything, though.  It really is a unique pattern and looks cute on everyone that makes it– try it if you haven’t already!

What have you guys been up to lately?  I’m sorry for my lack of commenting on your blogs and posting on my own– the internet is still down in my neighborhood.  😦  Luckily, I’ve had cell service, so I can at least keep up with everybody on Instagram and Facebook– NECESSARY FOR SURVIVAL.  Hopefully you’re all well!

P.S.  Did you see that Stephanie from makes the things opened up an Etsy shop?  Check it out– she’s got some cool pieces!

123 responses

  1. I love your version! I wasn’t so into this pattern because it’s a little too girly for me. But your fabric choice adds an edge I haven’t seen in other versions. It makes me think just maybe this one is worth adding to my collection.

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  2. Oh, this one is super cute (as is everything you make!). In the early 80s I had a shirt in the exact same plaid and I wore it to death – I bet you get a ton of wear out of this shirt as well.

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  3. Ooh your Banksia is so well made! It looks lovely – I can’t wait to start mine. I want a Banksia dress as well! My Darling Ranges will be done soon – come to a bit of a halt though as I need to buy buttons and have no car at the moment. It’s 6 degrees here so you’re making me chilly watching you outside in a tee! I’m guessing it’s not that cold there!

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    • Yikes! So cold! It was about 2 degrees Celsius here this morning– I put my coat on the second hubs was done snapping photos!

      I’m looking forward to seeing your Darling Ranges dress! It’s such a cute pattern! It doesn’t really suit me, but I’ve loved seeing everyone else’s versions! You would look so sweet in a Banksia dress!

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    • It’s such a great design detail! I love seeing Peter Pan collars on other people, but I feel like I would look like I was wearing a school uniform in one that was all the way up to the collarbone.

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  4. So cute! did you find the fit ok? My muslin is off around the ladylumps (but I had similar problems with the Darling Ranges dress too – I gave up on that, but don’t want to give up on this!)

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    • I did an FBA (which I don’t usually have to do) and moved the darts a little in the process, and that seemed to sort out my problems. I do feel like it’s pulling a bit in the middle of my back directly behind my bust, so something must be a little off still. I hope yours works out OK! This has a pretty forgiving fit, in my opinion, so I’m hoping you’re able to sort everything out. 🙂

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  5. So lovely! There are some flannel looking shirts i(and dresses) n the People Tree catalogue but yours looks way better. 🙂 I was tempted to get banksia but am on a spending freeze at the moment! I agree with the other comments that the lower neckline saves the collar from too much twee-ness. xx

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  6. I love your Banksia! What a great winter option to make it out of plaid. P.S I too was a bit clumsy with my placket and collar but alls well and despite a slow start I wear mine all the time.

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    • Aww man, I’m sorry. I hate when stuff that looks cute on other people doesn’t work on me– I JUST had one of those (haven’t gotten around to photographing it cause it’s too depressing)!

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  7. I read pug.. and furiously scrolled up and down but .. nothing. Can’t believe it! Are you trying to get elected or something? You are aren’t you? And now you have two labradors instead…XD That’s an awesome top. I like that the collar is totally camouflaged – Peter Pan with attitude..

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    • Oh no! Sorry to disappoint! They were acting up this morning or I would’ve snapped a few pics of them, too (they were all about tugging on their leashes and trying to charge ahead… pugs these days…).

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  8. Love the red checks! Definitely a unique top. I feel bad that I only used this pattern once and never wear what I made from it. Your version makes me wanna revisit it!

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  9. This is super cute, I love it in the snuggly gingham! What a great idea!!! I so need this pattern, but it’s going on the Xmas gift list as I really shouldn’t be spending any money on sewing for a while ;o)

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  10. You are such a sweetheart. Thank-you so much for the shout-out!! I’m shipping your necklace tomorrow. 🙂

    LOVE your Banksia top. That flannel is darling. I’m glad you’re doing ok! What a mess, huh??

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  11. Oh this is super cute and I’m feeling inspired to make this up, I have the pattern but got put off by the Darling Dress dramas… I love love love this top on you!
    Hope everything gets sorted out in your world and things get back to normal quickly.

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  12. Very cute and wearable! I like your idea of a tougher fabric for a sweet pattern. Sorry that you ran into some fabric issues! I won’t buy Joann plaid flannel anymore for the same reason!

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  13. This is great and very you!! I like the use of the plaid, plus you could dress it up or down. With a black blazer it would look really dressy too. Perfect winter wear. I love this pattern and plan on making quite a few more – a great wardrobe basic.

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  14. Oh hun that top is cute!!!!! Can’t go wrong with black and red, my fav color combos.
    Haha, you should see my neighbourhood… I wouldn’t be caught dead outside carrying a camera! Camera would probably get snatched when it’s sitting there on self-timer mode…

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  15. So cute! I like that it’s a totally modern girly version of the plaid flannel shirt. It sounds very cozy! I hope you have internet and normalacy again soon!

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  16. Yes! I love this top! This is so my style! I need to steer myself away from floral fabrics that I then feel uncomfortable wearing, and make myself something like this! Cute, stylish, comfortable and a little bit edgy.

    Hmm… maybe I should buy the pattern??

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  17. I LOVE me some flannel. Love love love. You look cozy and fabulous – what more could we want from a garment? 🙂 Love the buffalo check plaid – definitely one of my favorite styles of plaid. People have favorite styles of plaid, right? Or am I totally out in left field?

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  18. I keep meaning to get this pattern but I have so many other things I’m trying to get made at the moment. I love your version though, especially the flannel plaid! It looks very cosy.

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