Free crossover top pattern – with a difference!

Great beginner video tutorial on pattern hacking.  How to take a basic t-shirt pattern and create this top, knowing it will fit you.As you know, every month I like to offer up a new free sewing pattern. But so many people have been asking me recently about how I make the patterns, how they can make their own, and how they can adjust patterns to fit them better or slightly change the style, that I thought a change was in order for this month.

So the free pattern for February is one you already have, and might already have downloaded and sewn.  What?  Stay with me, because we are going to do something very interesting this month that will change one pattern into something completely different.

Why learn more about sewing patterns?

Understanding how a pattern works, how it is created and can be manipulated is a really important skill for sewing your own clothes.

  • It helps you take a simple pattern and add your style to it.
  • It helps you understand sizing and see where you may need to make alterations.
  • It helps you when you need to alter a commercial pattern for fitting.
  • It can help you to create your own custom patterns.
  • You can create a pattern in your custom size for the perfect fit when you sew it again next time.
  • You can create a whole wardrobe of styles from just a handful of patterns.

Great beginner video tutorial on pattern hacking. How to take a basic t-shirt pattern and create this top, knowing it will fit you.

Starting with the On A Roll T-Shirt Pattern

If you don’t already have it in your pattern library, download the On A Roll T-Shirt pattern here.

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Download the On a Roll T-shirt pattern

As usual, to make downloading easy and reliable, the pattern is hosted in my design account with Craftsy. If you don’t already have an account, you will need to sign up to download, but don’t worry, it’s free, quick and easy. Add the pattern to your cart, and then checkout – no payment/address details etc needed.

Print out the pattern, assemble it and cut out the pattern in your size and now we are ready to get started.

We are going to take this pattern from this to this –>  and I’ll show you step by step how to do it.  Honestly, its easier than you might think.

This to this

In the first video we will cover:

  • Creating a horizontal contrast band
  • Creating a crossover bodice
  • Adding pleats to the bodice
  • Adding pleats or gathers to the lower section
  • All in the places where YOU want or need them

 How to create your own crossover top pattern

 

 

In this second video:

  • Putting it all together
  • Easing larger pieces into the central band
  • Sewing the pleats
  • Gathering the bottom
  • Finishing the top

 

 

References covered in the videos:

Great beginner video tutorial on pattern hacking. How to take a basic t-shirt pattern and create this top, knowing it will fit you.

Tweaking the design and fit

Having completed my top, there are a few small tweaks I would make to this pattern if I was to sew it again and get it just as I wanted it.  I would:

  • take the central band up another inch or maybe and inch and a half to fit closer under the bust
  • make the central band 1/2 inch narrower
  • add a few extra gathers to center front to give it just a bit more volume under the band
  • add on an inch or two to the length

Then I would have the perfect pattern I could sew time and time again.

Opt In Image
Download the On a Roll T-shirt pattern

As usual, to make downloading easy and reliable, the pattern is hosted in my design account with Craftsy. If you don’t already have an account, you will need to sign up to download, but don’t worry, it’s free, quick and easy. Add the pattern to your cart, and then checkout – no payment/address details etc needed.

Other projects and patterns you can try

If you have enjoyed learning more about pattern hacking, you may also love the tutorials on how to draw up your own custom fit patterns for leggings and for a straight skirt. Understanding the principles behind the fit on these patterns can really help you achieve a better fit in everything that you sew.  Having a custom-fit pattern also makes it very quick to sew up a new garment in exactly the right size any time you want, knowing no alterations are needed.

How to draft your own custom leggings pattern and sew leggings from So Sew Easy. Once the pattern is done, the sewing is so quick and easy, I'll be making lots of these in all sorts of fabrics!

How to Sew A Skirt. Beginners tutorial series covers fabric, patterns, cutting out, darts, zipper, lining, hems and more. You can totally learn to sew from this set of tutorials - from So Sew Easy.

Check out the Custom Fit Leggings and the Sew a Skirt Series.

You should also check out these classes on Craftsy about how to take one pattern and make it into variations, all while keeping the same great fit:

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Kathy Ruddy: One Pattern, Many Looks (Pants) and One Pattern, Many Looks (Blouses)

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Great beginner video tutorial on pattern hacking. How to take a basic t-shirt pattern and create this top, knowing it will fit you.

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21 Responses to Free crossover top pattern – with a difference!

  1. Sarah DV says:

    I just finished sewing up the On a Roll T-Shirt about an hour ago (my first attempt at one of your patterns) and loved it so much I immediately changed my clothes so I can wear it for the rest of the day. I added bands at the sleeves and hem and graded from an F at the bust to a G at the hips and the fit is really good. I just may try changing the pattern up for a summer wrap tee. 🙂

  2. Both are very flattering tops. You are very generous to share so many of your tutorials and patterns, Deby. Featured today…

  3. Elaine says:

    i truely enjoy the emails i receive about all the things you have made and teach so easy…i love the patterns for clothing and of course they all look good on you…However i was wondering if you were ever going to branch out to try and make patterns for the bigger plus size followers of your work?…maybe find a friend who is bigger then your own plus size of 46″….and use her to create items for us larger ladies..?? i am 52″ so it would be nice if some day you tried your hand at making patterns for the bigger plus size ladies….

    • I’ll be honest, I don’t think that will happen any time soon Elaine. It would mean I’d have to do twice the work if I were to introduce a larger size range too, and at the moment I can only just find time for all the things I do now. I know there would be interest in this and I truly wish I could do everything, but sadly not.

  4. Beverley says:

    Congrats. So awesome. Thank you for all your tips and tricks and patterns.

  5. Jane says:

    Hi Deby,
    Congratulations on winning the Craftsy & Sew British awards. You deserve them.
    I found your pattern hack fascinating. I would love to see more posts like this. You made it look very easy. Your new top is adorable and looks great on you. Thanks for sharing this with us.

    • Thanks Jane, I find drafting and manipulating patterns very interesting. Imagining how to turn something flat and 2d into a 3d garment can be quite a thought process. I’ll certainly try to create more pattern articles in the future.

  6. Maria Smith says:

    Congratulations, Deby. When I came across your web-site, I knew it was for me, so I could get better at sewing. When I have the time I will send you pictures of the things I have made with your patterns. Thanks for your help with all of it.
    Maria. Canada.

  7. Joy says:

    Thanks Deby, this is brilliant and is definitely on my ‘do’ list for the spring. As per Red Point Tailor, its good to see you in action, you are a ‘natural’ at presentation. Many congratulations on winning -not one, but TWO – recognitions in the recent voting!

  8. Cindy says:

    You are a good teacher! Maybe Craftsy might like to have you do a class at some point. Your calm demeanor and clear instructions would make you a great choice for a teacher, especially to novice sewers. You give very clear instructions, and your videos clearly show what it is you are demonstrating. It might be something for you to think about.

    • Well that would be very nice but Craftsy always employ the very best experts in their chosen field to explain certain techniques or projects, and let’s face it, I might enjoy sewing and making videos, but my sewing can’t exactly be called expert! If they introduce a class on “how to just get things done in a very limited time with a cat jumping all over you, and not worry about what it looks like on the inside” – I’ll be perfect to teach that class!

      • Cindy says:

        I disagree. I think they could use a very beginner class, and you would be great for that. It could be “Take the fear out of sewing”. I think since it hasn’t been so long since you were a beginner yourself, you are better equipped to understand what real beginners need to know. I have a lot of Craftsy classes, and they all assume you have a certain level of knowledge. I’m guessing that there are more than a few people out there who are still afraid of their machines because they don’t know the very basics. Those same people are likely to give up on sewing, because they feel lost watching the more advanced classes. They may feel like they don’t “get it”, when in fact, they haven’t learned the basics that are not addressed in the class.

  9. How nice it is to see you in action! You are doing such amazing job. Fantastic.

  10. Wow Deby! The first top is nice, but I love the new one so much! I don’t sew clothes very much anymore, really never for myself, but I might give this a try.

What do you think?