Made by me / My makes / Sewing activewear

FehrTrade Surf to Summit top

So this is the finished Surf to Summit top by FehrTrade. I was drawn to this pattern because I like long sleeve activewear tops with a zipper front. In fact, FehrTrade might be the only one making those kinds of sewing patterns (correct me if I’m wrong).

But before I can start talking about the top, I need to get something off my chest. Because when I only had the hemming left this happened…

Yes, I managed to serge through both the zipper, fabric, facing and the zip shield.

Since this happened very late at night, I kinda panicked and tried to save the front by doing this solution, lol! Oh well, if I had waited for a day or two, I might have come up with a better solution. But sewing comes with its highs and lows and sometimes it is not easy to think clearly. With that out of the way, let’s talk about the pattern and the modifications I did!

I added a zip pocket in the back. I love this kind of detailing in RTW so I wanted to mimic that look. I used the 3-thread flatlock on my serger with woolly nylon in the looper.

The back view. I went down half a size to make it more tight-fitting, I would say that the fit of this top is fitted but not skin-tight.

As a fun detail, I made the side panels white, mixing sport-mesh on top with Supplex in the lower half. I will say though that the side panels are quite wide and the seam hits almost at mid-bust, at least on me.

So let’s talk about the collar. The original pattern has a high collar, which looks cool but I struggled a bit with the facing and making the collar stand up properly. But due to my aforementioned mishap, I had to remove the collar, and instead, I added some ribbing and a flap to hide the flaws (didn’t really work tbh).

Overall I think the design is very cool, flattering and unique, but I would have prefered more narrow side panels, to make it easier to use mesh and other contrasting fabrics, which is something this pattern lends itself well too. The pattern also comes with a short sleeved version, which could work great for a bike jersey, but do note that you might want to adjust the pattern to make it more snug for that purpose. Plus there is a men’s version of this pattern too!


  • CareyMoonbeam
    December 1, 2017 at 5:21 am

    I am glad to see you mention the neck facing. It drives me nuts on this pattern! That said, my surf-to-summit top is in the laundry almost every week from late fall to late spring. I did the optional mitts, and they truly do keep my fingers warmer than gloves while running. (So sorry about the serger mishap on your beautiful top!)

    • Johanna
      December 1, 2017 at 7:51 am

      Yes the facing could have been constructed better I think. I have a similar fleece top from Craft that has a facing and shield that are less flimsy, but that facing has more pieces and it’s also a fairly stable fleece so maybe it wouldn’t have worked for soft jersey anyway. Happy to hear you get a lot of mileage out of your top, I imagine I will too. These kind of tops are crucial pieces in my workout wardrobe and I’m very happy that FehrTrade has a pattern with this style.

  • A Reader
    December 1, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    The Canadian company Jalie makes terrific sports patterns. McCalls also has a range of activewear, as do Kwik Sew along with a few offerings from the other big companies. Independent Green Mountain, in the USA, has a great bike jersey pattern, too.

    Such a frustrating mishap, but your end result looks great!

    • Johanna
      December 2, 2017 at 10:04 am

      Thank you! Yes, there are a lot of great pattern companies that does activewear these days. Do you mean Green Pepper, or is there are another patterns company called Green Mountain? I have meaning to try the Green Pepper bike jersey for many years, I did a jacket from them many years ago that was really good and well drafted.


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