| Sewing Patterns for the Modern Woman - Blog Post: Introducing the Kila Tank

Introducing the Kila Tank

By Allie

Allie is the co-founder of Indiesew and creator of all things pretty on the site. Follow Allie and receive other Indiesew updates by subscribing to the blog. | Introducing the Kila Tank by Allie Olson

A few years ago I discovered the versatility of a fitted rib knit tank top. I bought a vintage rib knit tank from an Etsy shop and soon noticed that I was reaching for it constantly. That tank top was pretty much always on my body: with shorts, tucked into skirts, as a workout top, and (perhaps most frequently) as a pajama top.

Since then, I've been scouring my favorite ethical clothing shops for fitted rib knit tank tops. But it's not something you see often in ready-to-wear. So as my lone rib knit tank was worn to obliteration, I decided it was time to make this design into a sewing pattern.

Introducing the Kila Tank sewing pattern! (Kila is pronounced kee-lah.)

Kila Tank Sewing Pattern

Kila Tank Sewing Pattern by Allie Olson | Indiesew

Kila is a fitted tank top designed for stretchy rib knit fabrics. A slight racerback design gives this top a sporty look, but won’t reveal conventional bra straps. Kila’s deep scoop neckline and armholes are finished with a bulk-free binding method that mimics ready-to-wear techniques.

The Kila Tank has several inches of negative ease making it a great basic layering tank top. Come fall and winter, I'll be wearing my Kila Tank under button-up shirts and sweaters.

This pattern is well-suited for the beginner sewist who has some experience sewing with stretchy knit fabrics.

Kila Tank Knit Bindings | Indiesew Grey Rib Knit Tank | Sewing Pattern by Allie Olson

Kila Tank + Persephone Shorts | Indie Sewing PatternsWorn here with Persephone Shorts (in Eggplant Cotton Twill)

Kila Workout Tank | Indiesew

Kila Tank + Morgan Jeans | Sewing Pattern by Allie Olson

Red Racerback Tank Top | Kila Tank by Allie OlsonWorn here with Morgan Jeans (in Washed 10 oz. Denim)


Batch sew & Binding Tutorial

The Kila Tank's neckline and armhole binding method is commonly used in ready-to-wear fashion, but is not often seen in the home sewing world. It's a quick and easy method that results in a clean finish.

But since most of you are likely accustomed to the four quarters binding method, we'll be presenting an in-depth tutorial on how to sew the Kila's bindings in a batch-sew method that will allow you to sew several tank tops at a time. Stay tuned for that!


Kila Tank on Different Body Types

In the coming weeks we'll also be showing you what the Kila Tank looks like on a different body type than shown above. We know it's important to know what the strap and racerback coverage looks like in different sizes, so that will be available for you as well!


Indiesew Luxe Rib Knit Fabrics

UPDATE: The three fabric shown below are sold out, but we're hoping to restock them as soon as possible!

We've got a great line up of rib knit fabrics in the Indiesew Fabric Shop, but there are three in particular that are ideal for this pattern because of their pill-resistance and excellent recovery.

From my experience, my Kila Tanks get worn and washed a lot. It was important to me to find rib knit fabrics that will resist pilling and won't stretch out. The three rayon/poly/spandex blends shown below passed our wash and wear test with flying colors. I've washed these fabrics on rather aggressive wash and dry cycles several times and there are no signs of degradation.

I've been wearing my Kila Tanks to bed and when I wake up in the morning they aren't even remotely stretched out. The recovery of this fabric is incredible.

The red and blue rib knits shown below are not overstock fabric, but we're sourcing them because we want to provide durable fabrics for a design that is likely to see a lot of washing and wearing. We want your handmade garments to stand the test of time.

They're a higher price point ($20 per yard), but you'll notice a huge difference in quality. These are part of our new Luxe line of fabric.

The grey rib knit shown below is overstock fabric, but after examination and experimentation, we believe it is produced by the same manufacturer as the red and blue. So that fabric is offered at almost half the cost of our two Luxe substrates for the exact same quality until it sells out.

Indiesew Rib Knit Fabrics | Kila Tank

The Kila Tank requires only 1 to 1.25 yards of fabric, making this a quick, affordable sewing project! If you've never sewn with rib knit fabric, check out our Fabric Files: Rib Knit post.

We'll be back later this week with more Kila Tank resources! Stay tuned!

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