Free Spirit Tunic Tutorial

I’ve been wanting to make a tunic for a while.

I browsed around online at Free People and found this for inspiration.

It’s $298.00
So on Friday I went to the fabric store and spent $ 17.00 on a yard of Anna Maria Horner’s gorgeous voile – the perfect thing to make a flowy tunic (or to snuggle with on the floor).

Here’s my Step by Step process – it’s not the most precise tutorial, because I was kind of just free-style sewing it –  but I did my best to document it for you in case you would like to make one.  I would also like you to know that I really made it goofy the first time.  Here’s your comic relief for the morning.

Bad.  Too blousy – not enough shape.
So I ripped and ripped and basically started over.

Here’s what you will need:

  • 1 yard of voile – 56″ wide
  • 3/8″ wide elastic
  • sewing machine/thread
  • scissors
  • measuring tape
  • Step 1:  Lay the fabric out folded in half.

    Then fold it in half again.  Determine the size of your neckline – I cut a triangle 3″x2″.
    Cut all the layers. This is the back neckline.
    Now split the top layer along the fold -about 5″down.

    Cut a straight line from the bottom of that slit to the top at the 3″mark (only cut ONE layer).  Flip the fabric over and repeat on the other side.
  • Step 2:  Hem all of the sides and the neckline.  Turn each edge over once and then again and press. Pin it well and topstitch the hem.
  • Step 3:  Now it’s time to give it some shape (the Step I skipped the first time 🙂
    Measure your waist at your bellybutton.  Mine was 31″.
    Now take half of that measurement and add it to the original measurement.  Mine was 31+15 1/2″ = 46 1/2″  Now divide that by 2.  46″/2 = 23″ – we’ll call this measurement C
    Fold the tunic in half.  Along the fold, measure 9″ up from the hem.  Then measure your C measurement out from the 9″ mark.  At the corner edge of the tunic draw a line to the 23″ marking.
  • Step 4:  Now measure your armhole.  From the top right edge measure down 8″.  (or more if you think you might need it).   From that 8″ marking, draw a line to the 23″ mark.  It will look kinda like this once you cut it.
    Are you still with me? 🙂
  • Step 5:  Cut along those lines through all layers.  Open up your tunic and turn it right sides together.  Now we are going to add the elastic.
  • Step 6:  Find the center of the front of the tunic.  Measure up 9″ and place a pin.  Starting at the edge, 5″ up from the hem, draw a curved line up to the 9″ measurement and then back down to the other 5″ marking.

    Pin the elastic to one edge and sew it on – pulling it tight towards you as you go (this will make it gather).
  • Step 7:  Still right sides together, lay the tunic down back side facing you.  Draw a line 5″ up from the hem straight across the tunic back.  Pin the elastic to one edge and sew it on using the same method as before.
  • Step 8:  You’re almost done!!  From the 8″ mark (at the bottom of the armhole) sew the side seams,right sides together, using a 1/2″ seam.  Stop at the 5″ mark before the hem – so that you will have the slits on the sides.
  • Step 9:  Sleeve detail.  Find the center top of the sleeve.  Sew a basting stitch about 7-8″ along the center of the sleeve.  Gather it – more towards the edge of the sleeve – when you are happy with it – secure it with a regular topstitch.

    Wow – so if you made it through all that and even remotely understood what I was talking about – BRAVO!!  Load a pic up to the Flickr Pool so I can see!and remember – it’s the last day to leave a comment for a chance to win the “kick up your heels” apron!Happy sewing,
Sew Homegrown