I kinda can’t believe it, but I finished the copycat off the shoulder top while it was still on trend. The pattern (Simplicity 8124) goes together really fast and is indeed suitable for beginners.
I modified it a little–took out 4 inches of ease on the fold for the front and back pattern pieces (based on this review) because the ones I was copying weren’t so voluminous. And I put in 5 rows of elastic shirring instead of the casing the pattern called for to make it look more like the J. Crew version.
The fabric is a nice shirting from my haul at Stone Mountain in California three years ago (!) and it’s perfect for it. There’s something to be said for waiting to sew up your stash until you have just the right project for it.