To celebrate National Sewing Month, I made this pretty little white cotton swing tee. It’s such a simple piece but lightweight, flattering and cute, and the best part is that it’s so easy to throw together and add trim wherever you’d like.
Step 1 // First let’s cut out all our pieces. You’ll need a BACK, FRONT, 2 SLEEVES and 2 NECKLINE lining pieces. Use a tank top that you own, fold it in half, and then lay it flat on your fabric with the fold of the fabric matching up with the fold of your tank. Cut around it (adding a 1/2″ seam allowance), and then adding your desired length and a flared width (mine was 20″ across at the armpits, and 42″ at the hem for both FRONT and BACK pieces). Do the same for the FRONT piece, making the neckline lower on this one. Use a fitted 3/4 sleeve from a shirt that you own and use it as a guide to cut out the 2 SLEEVES, then use your FRONT and BACK pieces as guide to cut the correct widths of NECKLINE pieces.
[tip: I always use parchment paper to cut out real pattern pieces (using my own clothing to create these pattern pieces), and then pin the pattern pieces onto the fabric and then cut. It eliminates a lot of error, and also allows me to fold the pattern pieces in half and make sure they are symmetrical or straight before I cut into my fabric!]
Step 2 // With right sides together, pin the FRONT and BACK pieces together at the shoulders and sew together.
Step 3 // With right sides together, pin the top of the SLEEVE and the top of the shoulder together, as shown. Continue down the rest of the arm hole, pinning the sleeve in place.
Step 4 // Sew the sleeve to the arm hole with a 1/2″ seam allowance. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for the other sleeve.
Step 5 // With right sides together, sew from the elbow to the waist with a 1/2″ seam allowance. Make sure your seams match up at the armpit!
Step 6 // With right sides together, sew your NECKLINE pieces together to make a circle.trim.
Then, with right sides together, pin the NECKLINE circle the neckline of the dress, matching them up the shoulder seams. Sew with a 1/2″ seam allowance around the entire neckline, stretching slightly as you sew so the pieces lay flat. Trim the seam allowance and then tuck the lining inside the top and press flat.
Step 7 // Using a wide stitch, top stitch around the neckline to tack the lining in place. Then hem the sleeves and the dress to your desired length.
Step 8 // Sew the trim around the sleeves and the hemline with a straight, wide stitch, and you’re done!