Style Arc Anita Top

I’ve taken a break from my Game of Thrones marathon to sew a blouse. It was perfect for this hot, muggy July day.






The Style Arc Anita is a looser-fitting peasant blouse. The cuffs of the three-quarter raglan sleeves are gathered with elastic, and a self fabric tie gathers the neckline. The front split is finished with a facing. It is a quick make. I was able to cut, sew, and finish the entire blouse in one evening.

This is an older Style Arc pattern. Back then their pattern illustrations weren’t always accurate. (They’ve gotten a lot better.) In this case the waist is not nearly as shaped as the depicted. The actual shaping is quite minimal – maybe 1″ smaller than the bust.

Fabric: hot pink silk crepe de chine, a Sue’s Daily Pick purchased from Fabric Mart a few years ago:

Screen Shot 2015-07-08 at 8.36.49 AM

As you can see from my photos, this is a looser fitting top, so choose something lightweight that has excellent drape. Rayon challis, lightweight jersey, and silk or poly georgette, twill, crepe de chine, and charmeuse are all suitable.

The fabric recommendations on the Style Arc website are wrong, at least for the 44″/110cm width. After prewashing my fabric the width shrank from 44″ to just over 42″, and I needed most of the 2.5 yards I had bought.

You’ll need 1/4″ (6mm) wide elastic to finish the cuffs. Style Arc doesn’t mention the width in their pattern instructions. I did see an awkwardly worded reference on the website though:

ELASTIC: Finished measurements 6mm or ¼ inch width

Fitting adjustments:

  • Lengthened body 1″
  • Increased the waist shaping, removing 1.5-2″ width, using my Style Arc Katherine blouse pattern as a guide.
  • Added 2″ width at the hem
  • Shaped the hem to be like a shirttail rather than straight across, once again using the Katherine blouse as my guide. I find shirttail hems more flattering than blouses that are cut straight across.
  • 3/8″ forward shoulder adjustment
  • Added a total of 1.5″ width to the bust
  • Added 3/4″ width to the back
  • Added 3/4″ width to the sleeves (bicep/elbow)

Overall I prefer the Katherine to the Anita. It feels like a more distinctive blouse than the Anita, with the deep scoop neckline and the placket front. However I prefer the narrower sleeve width of the Anita, and plan on transferring this width to my Katherine blouse sleeve.

33 thoughts on “Style Arc Anita Top

  1. Anne, this is very pretty! I just finished an older StyleArc pattern and found a few things ‘off’ as well when compared to the line drawing. I still love the top but a more accurate pic would have helped a great deal! Happy sewing and I enjoy your blog!


        1. It isn’t necessarily the time. It’s things like: people emailing me wanting to “borrow” my Marfy catalogs and other various somewhat valuable sewing items (without even offering to pay for postage upfront); complaints that I don’t write more about the things they are interested in; rude/creepy/invasive/off-topic comments (and the inevitable temper tantrums if I delete them). Fortunately there’s not too many of these people, but there’s just enough on some days to make me wonder whether it is worth continuing to keep this a public blog…


          1. It’s hard work, I used to moderate on a public forum several years ago and it’s quite unbelievable what people say or expect.


  2. Anne the top looks really good on you. It’s been on my to buy list for ages, but I wonder if it is sized smaller than the newer ones? I have very narrow shoulders and don’t want the neckline to be voluminous so was going to go down a size.

    Can I ask how you did you forward should adjustment on a raglan sleeve please?


    1. The sizing feels spot-on. I would email Chloe and see what she thinks.

      I split the sleeve cap horizontally about 2/3 up from the armhole, then shifted it to the front 3/8″ and smoothed the lines. This gives a steeper slope in the front and shallower slope in the back, which is actually more anatomically correct for most people.


      1. Thank you Anne, I think I’ll go for the smaller and just add a little at the hip.

        I’d never have thought of that way to do the fwd shoulder adjustment so that’s been a great help!


  3. This top is gorgeous! Great combination of fabric and pattern, and I love that you added a shirttail hem. I always admire you attention to detail and meticulous fitting. I hadn’t seen this pattern before so thanks for the review!


    1. Shirttail hems can be a pain in the butt to hem, but I think they are far kinder to those of us with a larger bottom half.


    1. Bright, cool mid tones seem to be my best colors. I don’t think I would have liked this top half as much if I didn’t use such a shockingly bright color.


  4. yes! changing up the sleeves on the Katherine will result in the perfect peasant blouse.
    I like the Anita for fast & easy, but still, I’d put extra effort into making a Katherine because it is more polished looking.


    1. That is exactly how I feel. I think I made this one up mostly because I wanted to test out the sleeve width (and length). Lately I’ve been wearing the Katherine I made last year once a week!


  5. This is such a great color on you, Anne. The shirt-tail mod is a perfect addition to this top. I agree with your comment about Katherine being more polished. Although I can also see Anita as being fun with jeans, jean shorts or a skirt, and maybe some beads on the ties hanging down for a more ‘boho’ look.

    I’m sorry you’re having to deal with bone heads interfering with the fun of blogging. I haven’t blogged in quite a while after my blog was hacked ( seriously – my daughter commented that it was probably baby hacker practice to hack a sewing blog) and it makes me question how much I want ‘out there’. Anyway, for what it’s worth, Anne, I enjoy keeping up with what you are creating, and I definitely check here first to look for Style Arc or bra reviews. You sew prolifically, and quite well; I appreciate how you share the facts & details of patterns and your adjustments or changes, and critiques in an organized and fair manner. Your writing style and attention to detail is particularly suited to breaking down the steps and evaluating a pattern with a clear voice. So, I hope the creepy, tantrumy, personal space invading, assuming, rude and entitled boneheads do not take the joy out of blogging for you. It’s a shame the internet doesn’t come built in with a ‘truthometer’!


    1. Thanks, Andrea. I am not a “people person” to begin with, so when people that happen to read my 100% free, non-montenized site start making demands, instead of feeling flattered that I’m getting attention I just get very, very annoyed, and then I start thinking about making the entire site private! I don’t want it to feel like an obligation, especially when I’m not getting much in return. I absolutely agree with Judge Judy when she says women need to worry more about being respected and less about being liked. So when I start getting demands, instead of automatically caving to them I ask myself, “if I was a man, would I consider this a reasonable request? Would I feel guilty about turning it down? Would I just call them out on their bullshit?”

      The security aspect also worries me. And of course, the spam. I automatically disable comments on older than three months old now because 95% of the comments on older posts were spam. The remaining 5% were sometimes legitimate and sometimes poor quality. I am also very much a “do it and move on” sort of person, so even if someone asks a legitimate question about something I made a year ago I’m honestly not much help.


  6. Great job sewing this- your craftsmanship is excellent! Also- perfect choice of fabric the drape make it look really lovely! Thanks for sharing- and all the little modifications that you made, it really is all the little details that make things look more professional and chic!


  7. It’s a beautiful blouse Anne – and looks great on 🙂 The happy colour and the summery feel of it have me feeling warmer than I was a few moments ago (I’m wrapped in a blanket on the couch, haha!)


  8. Your reviews are always so informative and thoughtful! I’ve been searching in vain for the perfect peasant blouse, and now, thanks to your lovely review, I’ve found it! The color is so flattering on you. Rally lights up your skin! And you’re right on the money about the shirt tail hem. Much better. Thanks again and enjoy wearing your lovely blouse.


  9. Hi, Anne. Retha in Tucson here. I just found your blog through another blog. I LOVE this top you made. Your work is impeccable as is your fabric and color choice. I’m off to ogle over StyleArc patterns even though I’m sure they are still too complicated for me. I’m still struggling over basics. Just waiting for the light bulb moment. Any day now….lol


    1. Retha! What a surprise to hear from you! I guess I’ve been outed ;). You still working at that yarn shop?

      Sometimes Style Arc the instructions can be a bit vague or awkwardly written, but their patterns have better labeling than Big 4. If you decide to try one out and get stuck, just send me an email or message me on FB and I’ll try to help you out.


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