Traveler's Top Sleeve Hack

Hello friends! I’m here today to show you how I hacked the Traveler’s Top (aff link) to make it a little less Traveler-y. I am still mourning the loss of the Fireside Sweater (even though I own it) and I really wanted to “find it”, so to speak, in something else. After a lot of thinking, I decided the Traveler’s Top would do perfectly. I am really, really loving these little ruffles on the sleeves lately and this top is perfect to do that hack because you can insert the ruffle right in between the top of the sleeve and the rest of it without having to add in your own seam allowance. You could totally do this hack on an inset sleeve, but having to do that extra little allowance is a pain, this Dolman style sleeve allows you to skip that. This hack would work perfectly on any sleeve that is a Dolman style, so keep that in mind.

So first thing, I didn’t cut mine in the pointed shape, I cut it at a more shirt/tunic length instead. You can make this any length you want, I just eyeballed mine, cutting the front and the back the same length. I ignored the pocket markings and left the pocket off entirely, although you could still add it on yours if you like.

Everything else I cut out normally. I also cut out sleeves and a neckband. Additionally, you will need two long strips for ruffles. I measured the top of my sleeve (15 inches) and doubled that to get 30 inches. Then I decided how long I wanted my ruffle to be, I like mine shorter. I decided on 2 inches. In the end I cut two long strips that were 30 inches long by 2 inches wide. You can obviously cut yours to your preference.

Assembly from this point is pretty straight forward. You are going to sew the front and back together at the shoulder seams. Then attach your neckband.

Now it’s time for the ruffles. Sew a basting/gathering stitch to the top of the ruffle. I used white thread here so (1) you can see it (2) I’m lazy (3) it’s easier to remove later if necessary. Gather your ruffle to fit the arm opening.

I found it easiest to clip the ruffle to the top part of the arm first and then clip the bottom part over it after that. In the end you are sewing through three layers.

Now your ruffled sleeves should look like this.

Continue to sew up the rest of the sleeve and bodice. Hem.

You’re done! There are a lot of other options you could tack on to this. You could do this with the cowl or hood option that are both also options in this pattern. You could extend this into a dress, you could do cuffs on the sleeve or do a band instead of a hem. There really are a lot of ways you can change and hack this pattern, and honestly I’ve found so many of Ellie and Mac’s patterns are so easy to mash together, they compliment each other very well! I can’t wait to see what we hack next!

(Written by: Michelle Eisele)

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