Vogue 8497 ~ Shawl Collared Top

I have about three long-sleeved casual tops – football, football and Canadian Olympic Team. I wanted something new and normally I’d go shop for something at the January clearance sales, but I shopped my pattern and fabric stash instead.

The Inspiration

JJill Layered
JJill Layered Collar Elliptical Top. Available at JJill


Vogue 8497


This pattern was issued in 2008 and is now out of print. I bought the variety of interesting shapes that would work with jerseys and knits. I chose View C.


From Fabric Mart Fabrics, one of Julie’s Swatch Club picks last summer. It was $5 a yard, and I only used 1 1/2 yards so this was a frugal make. There’s a yard left for something else.

The only real discovery with the fabric is how much it rolls on both the vertical and horizontal. Otherwise, it was easy to work with, and it’s a great weight for cooler weather.


One of the reviews I read said that the shoulders were narrow, so I cut an 18 and did a small pivot to increase the bust a bit.

Sewing Notes

I thought this was going to be such a quick make until I got to the collar.

Look at these instructions:



What exactly are you supposed to do with the pressed edges of the collar? They’re just left flapping in the wind.


I tried folding to bring the fold lines to the neck seam, but that didn’t work. I left the pattern and came back again the next day, and the next. Apparently it’s supposed to be left just folded in. So I cover stitched to finish the unfinished edge. Please, if you see something else in the instructions, let me know so I can clean my glasses and look again.


The second oddity is the sides. I like the shaping provided by the side gusset but to have it extend about 3/4″ is just strange. But okay, good opportunity to use the cover stitch.


Experienced sewists, is this underarm portion of the gusset intended to prevent the bodice from shifting when you lift your arms? Or is it just a design element?

I suppose this may contribute to the armscye fitting snugly, but it made fitting the sleeves difficult (and they are quite tight).



Do I like it? It’s just okay. Were it not for the fabric (which I like), I wouldn’t have finished. I’ve worn it twice now and both times I spent the whole time smoothing the collar because it rolls around to show the ‘raw’ edges (which I did cover stitch).

Would I use the pattern again? Nope. It just wasn’t worth the hassle.

Bottom line is that I’ll wear this top but the pattern is in the bin. So not really a fail, but not a winner, either. I’ll wear it through the cold weather, but suspect it will be on a Goodwill rack near you come May.

A rare unhappy sewing experience 😦

Odd side extension
Back fits nicely
Front fits well except for the errant collar, which was smoothed the second before the photo.

7 thoughts on “Vogue 8497 ~ Shawl Collared Top

  1. Janine, I don’t know what to say about that underarm seam. About the collar – I think I would have not gathered the front in the center. I would have left that flat so I could fold it over to meet where it’s stitched to the body of the top. I think there is enough gathering at the back of the neckline that you wouldn’t miss it at the front. I hope this makes sense. Even though it gave you trouble it still looks really nice. Love the fabric.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Lisa! I guess this was a lesson to really digest the instructions prior to starting to sew. There’s enough fabric to redo the collar but just have to be so careful not to snag when picking out.


  2. The top looks good on you, so the extra effort was worth it. Patterns by Marcy Tilton tend to have unusual seaming, but that is her forte. Did you check her website? Sometimes she shares some extra instructions on her Vogue pattern line.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the kind words, and for the tip. I’ll take a look at her website. I think the unusual seaming may not be my first preference. I have another one of the Tilton sister patterns in my drawer and will check for reviews prior to using it.


  3. Don’t know what to say about the collar, but this top is very cute and would also look nice with trousers on a casual Friday at work! I love an interesting collar treatment.


  4. I’d def contact Marcy Tilton about the construction issues. Re the gussset at the underarm- unusual in a knit; but gussets were very common in better clothing before knits were so prevalent. A gusset allowed one arm movement when the sleeves were tight, and then shirt or dress hems didn’t pull up. Used in wovens, and typically diamond in shape. It does seem odd to extend the bottom quadrant of a gusset into a side panel. But as someone else said, that’s a trademark of the Tiltond, unusual seaming. Re knit tops and the Big 4: IMHO knits are not their forte. It’s absurd that they still often employ techniques for wovens in their instructions for knit garments. I’ve made more than a few tops from the Big 4 meant for knits that we’re just drafting disasters.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the excellent information. I had heard somewhere that gussets were for comfort of wearing, and certainly the sleeves are quite narrow so perhaps that is the intent. I’ve thought that perhaps the same thing could be achieved with a panel that did not end with the diamond shape under the arm, but instead extended all the way down the arm. It would certainly be easier to sew.

      I will also look at Marcy Tilton’s website to see if there is information on this particular pattern.

      Very much appreciate you sharing your knowledge and commenting 🙂


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