Completed: Colette Sorbetto

130905_Sorbetto1I came across the Sorbetto from Colette patterns while searching for a top that I would be able to squeeze out of a 60 cm long piece of fabric. The Sorbetto seemed to fit the bill perfectly as there are not too many details that take up precious fabric.

I first made a muslin in size 6 and from the waist down I blended to in between size 8 and 10 at the hem because I thought my pear shape would need it. When trying it on I decided that this definitely created too much flare at the hem (the pattern itself already has quite a bit of flare) so I changed it back to size 6. The only thing I changed was to remove ½’’ at centre back. The muslin also proved to be good practice for the construction because in my muslin the pleat ended up on the inside…

130905_Sorbetto3The main fabric is a 100% extra combed shirting cotton from Tessitura Monti that I had left-over after making a classic tailored shirt for my brother. The cutting instructions for the Sorbetto tell you to fold the fabric once and then to cut both pattern pieces on the same fold. My fabric was 160cm wide and by creating two fold lines by lining up the selvages I had more than enough room to cut out both pieces from a piece of fabric that was a little over 60 cm instead of the 1.5 yard that is called for in the instructions. So, for the smaller sizes you can definitely make this top with less fabric!

Unfortunately, I did not have enough fabric left to make my own bias tape. I intended to use store bought bias tape from my stash, but when I held it next to my good quality fabric it looked extremely cheap so that idea went out of the window.


Just look at that edge stitching!

Instead, I chose to use a quilting cotton from the Desert Daydreams collection of Anthology Fabrics to make my own bias tape with. Because the print is small scale it is clearly visible on the ½’’ bias tape and I feel this adds a nice detail to the top. I am also really happy with how my edge stitching on the bias tape turned out, it is probably the best I have done up until now.


French seam on the inside of the top.

I am rather pleased with the fit, although if I were to make this top again I think I would lower the armholes a little since they are just a bit too tight. For the shoulder and side seams I used French seams. In Dutch, funnily enough, a French seam is called an English seam, which makes me wonder what it is called in French… These seams make the inside of the garment look much tidier and with this top there are only 4 seams that require finishing so it doesn’t even take that much longer to complete the garment.

Overall I am happy with how this top turned out. In the future I will definitely try another Colette pattern as I thought the PDF pattern was easy to assemble and the instructions were very clear.

September 5, 2013

Emmely Treffers

About Emmely

I am a sewing enthusiast from the Netherlands. I live in the Leiden area with my husband and two daughters and I am currently working as a senior researcher in molecular virology. With my quilting patterns and sewing blog I want to infect as many people as possible with my love for sewing.

read more

You may also like...

Completed: Triangle Love quilt

Completed: Triangle Love quilt

If you have been following my quilting journey for a while, it will come as no surprise that I love to use triangles....

Completed: Don’t waste thread

Completed: Don’t waste thread

During the Christmas break of 2021/2022 I made a couple of small whole cloth quilts. I wanted a project that I could...


  1. Maria

    Hi Emmely,

    I just read this post and was curious if you would be kind to explain in detail how to remove 1/2″ from the center back. Do I have to move my fabric to a particular line on the pattern? Or is there a better, smarter way to do this? When I wear the top, and grab the back and fold it to the side, the back looks nicer, and since my main problem is with the back not laying as smooth as I would like, I think this may solve the Sorbetto problem I wrote to you about under your bias tape/armhole-neckline tutorial. Thank you once again for your knowledge. I am really enjoying your posts.

    • Emmely

      Hi Maria,

      I’m assuming you want to remove 1/2 ‘’ in total at the center back, so if you are working with a half pattern that is placed on the fabric fold you can simply cut ¼’’ off from the pattern piece, as long as you do it in a straight line parallel to the original center back. In fact, I had a look at my own pattern and it turns out I did that as well. I can’t even remember doing it, but it’s a good thing I write these kinds of modifications on my patterns. One thing you have to keep in mind when making these kinds of modifications is that it is very important to keep the corner from center back to the neckline and center back to hemline straight (90 degrees) so that your first cut is straight (it’s really just a very small part that needs to be straight, you can often hardly tell). Sometimes you’ll have to redraw the curve a little bit to make sure this is still the case. Why is this important? If you don’t pay attention to this and the corner ends up not so straight you will get a v-shaped or pointy shape at your center back neckline and hem when you cut the fabric. This is really not what you want. If you find this difficult to understand, just take a piece of paper and fold it in half. First cut straight across the fold. If you unfold the paper the edge across the fold will still be straight. Now cut it at an angle and unfold. Depending on which side of the paper you look at you’ll get a V or a point.

      Good luck!

      • Maria

        Hi Emmely,

        Thank you (a million times). I understand and appreciate your directions, which are very clear, and I’m going to try this method out.

  2. Nane

    Looking at some Sorbetto, I happily landed on your blog 😊. And so you know, French seams are “coutures anglaises” in french, which means English seams. Now, we need to find where those names come from… 😁

    • Emmely

      Oooh, the plot thickens! It makes me wonder whether this type of seam was originally invented in a completely different country….


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.