As part of my goal of making my own workout clothes, I also picked up this Fehr Trade XYT workout top pattern which comes with a built in power mesh bra layer and 3 back variations.
Fehr Trade XYT
I have never had much luck with tops with built in bras in RTW, being a brasize 34d, they are ok for loungewear, but I wouldn't dream of doing anything remotely active in them. The pattern instructions do say that it is designed for an A or B cup and that if you are larger you can either do an FBA on the mesh pieces or leave them out altogether and just wear a regular sports bra underneath. I might go back and experiment one day because I really should be able to get a better result making my own than RTW, but for this go round I went with the latter option. (Coincidentally since drafting this, a post on common XYT adjustments has just gone up on Fehr Trade - see here for more details).
I made 3 versions of the X back, but modified it to fill in the cutout at the centre back (so it would cover my sports bras although I just bought some in funky colours and I like the layered look I see on other people so next time I may try the other styles). In fact on 2 of them I joined the upper and lower back together since I wasn't using a contrast or the mesh layer, overlapping the seam allowances and cut them as one piece. So that's another variation you could do.
|Binding made from plain black lycra fabric
I played around with different edge finishes as well and used fabric binding instead of elastic as I liked the look so much on the VNA top - I wasn't very smart about this on the first go round (the polka dot one) and should have trimmed off the seam allowance on the neck and armscye first, so my shoulder straps are wider and my neckline higher than they are supposed to be. As I say this is all a learning process!
|These colours are actually navy/white & grey, love these fabrics together and will probably put them together for a VNA top
I added a couple of inches at the hem for a bit more coverage. I used size M which is not as close fitting as the tops on the pattern envelope, but since I intend to wear them with a sports bra and I don't want it too tight fitting this is ideal for now.
|Hmm will wear this with a different sports bra next time!
As with the VNA top, the instructions are really good and this top goes together fast, especially without the mesh layer. It doesn't use much fabric, actually it will be great for using up leftovers and thinking of fun fabric combinations.