Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Dressy Tunic Top {Tutorial}

The first dress top to add to my wardrobe--a silky tunic! :) While at Larry's grandmothers the other day, we came across some garments that she had made many years ago for store displays. I LOVED the fabric of this one top (and even though it wasn't my size) I HAD to try it on! A little big=a GREAT tunic! It really is a fun shirt...flowy and sparkly, perfect for a party or the holidays. I knew making this shirt HAD to be simple--and it only took a little over an hour to make my first time through. Even Jamie was surprised how fast I was done! The second time around should be a breeze! :)

Supplies: All you need is your fabric (I had 1.5 yards, but this will vary depending how "baggy" you want it to fit) of something flowy--I used a "silky satin" print...I think is what it's called?? Thread and your sewing machine :) 
I made this top based on Larry's grandmothers shirt, BUT I think drawing this pattern would be fairly simple also. 

Step 1. I traced the original shirt onto my fabric. I folded my fabric when doing this to have an identical front and back piece after I cut it out. I knew the original shirt was a LITTLE baggier than I would like, so I made it a little thinner on the sides, and a little longer to make sure it wouldn't be too short after hemming. 

This is where you would draw your own pattern if you don't have a store-bought tunic already that you like. I figure the easiest way to do this step is by tracing out a regular shirt, but "enlarging" the pattern (by tracing far outside the shirt) to get the bagginess affect. The key is for it to be fairly wide, but still kind of short. My shirt measured about 24 inches wide (at the side seams) and about 27 inches wide (at the armholes). It was EXACTLY 1.5 yards folded in half.

Pin at the shoulders and sides to try on your garment and make any adjustments. I had good luck this time around I liked how it fit, just a few more snips...I cut ONE half of the neckline a little lower than the other to distinguish a front and back. I also cut a little off the bottom--it seems I allowed TOO much length to start off--it was past mid-thigh!

Step 2. SEW! At the shoulders and side seams. I did a second seam for extra strength. Be sure to NOT sew the neck, armholes or bottom!!

Step 3. HEM! Hem along the remaining edges--neckline, armholes and bottom. I used a fairly small hem and invisible thread since the fabric is pretty colorful! This allowed for a perfect finish, no thread seen anywhere! :) This is really the most tedious and time consuming part...but it's the LAST step :) Make sure to not close any of these openings shut! 

Trim it up...
And you're done!! 
SO simple! 

I LOVE the look as originally planned...flowy and very comfortable... :)

BUT adding a belt made it 10 times dressier...perfect for work :)

I plan to make MANY more of these...probably try one out of a stretchy knit so it doesn't require as much hemming. Possibly even a cotton to see what it would look like with a little more structure. I was also thinking to add ruffles, fabric flowers and maybe even gather the fabric at the shoulders or neck for a different look.

As always, when going handmade, the possibilities are endless :)


Linked to:

BCD 125


Amber D said...

Very cute thanks for sharing it seems simple enought that I could make it!

Jenny Hall / Seamingly Smitten said...

So cute! And I love the fabric you chose! I just made a shirt you might like to try to make and it's my first tutorial.

Susan said...

Very elegant tunic. Thanks for sharing.