Twist Front Top – free t-shirt pattern

The latest sewing pattern from So Sew Easy is a free t-shirt pattern for the Twist Front Top.  It’s a sexy halter top that can also be a dress if you’d like to extend it.  Designed for knit fabrics, this top crosses over at the front and the little keyhole at the front gives an interesting look while still actually being modest with full high coverage.

Twist front top, free t-shirt pattern from So Sew Easy.  Multi-size free sewing pattern with step by step photo instructions.

The design is double thickness at the top front and back to give extra support if you need it, or for modesty if it turns chilly!  It can be worn with a strapless bra, or a halter neck bra if you use one of those clips to keep the straps closer together in front.

You can also choose to change the design for a cross-over and then tie behind the neck halter style if you prefer by extending the straps.

 

Where to get your free 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 is needed, no address details etc.  Then you can download the pattern in a PDF made of 14 sheets of paper.

The pattern comes in small, medium and large as standard but is easily increased up or down in size as needed.

Download the free Twist Front Top Pattern

Twist front top, free t-shirt pattern from So Sew Easy. Multi-size free sewing pattern with step by step photo instructions.Download from my design account at Craftsy.  Add to cart, check out, no payment/details required.

(If you have problems downloading the pattern, try THIS alternative link.)

 

Constructing your PDF pattern.

First time you’ve used a digital pattern?  Don’t worry, I’ll show you what to do.  We’ve used downloadable patterns on the site before, so just drop on over to the Easy Summer Dress for full instructions on how to print and assemble the pattern.  The pages are numbered 1-14.  Start at the top left with page 1, and continue with 4 on each row until you get to 13 and 14 on the bottom left.  The 5cm test square is on page 13 so print this one first and check the size to confirm your printer settings.

It should look like this when made up –>

Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!

What Size Do I Need?

The top is made from a stretchy knit fabric and is intended to skim the body and be fairly fitted.  The size I made for myself I am calling the Medium, and I used a very soft cotton jersey from Girl Charlee.  My measurements are bust 36, Waist 32.  It wasn’t at all tight around the bust so I could have gone down a size for a snugger fit and more support.

The amount of stretch in the fabric will alter the fit and feel of the top/dress so use this table as a guide only.  If you have very stretchy fabric and need some support, consider going down a size, or at least making a test piece first.

Bust
Small33-34-35
Medium36-37-38
Large38-39-40

Resizing.  To make your own alterations to the pattern, take a look at the way the existing sizes increase and decrease and follow this same example to increase or decrease another size if you need to.  Always test the fit using the paper pattern pieces, or an inexpensive test fabric before cutting your expensive fabric for your top or dress.

Adjustments to length.  If you want to make the top into a dress, simply add some length to the front and back pieces at the bottom.  You decide if you want the dress figure hugging, or widen the skirt from the waist outwards for a looser fit.

Large or small bust.  The crossover sections are fixed length.  If you have a small bust, you might consider making the length shorter by an inch, for a fuller than average bust, you may wish to extend the length an inch.  Again, it depends on the amount of stretch in your fabric.

Tie straps option.  Instead of having the fixed length strap, you could narrow and extend the straps and make it into a tie halter if you prefer.  This would certainly help you get the best fit and more support for the bust. In this case, I suggest extending the straps by 18 inches and narrowing them for easier tying.

 

Twist front top, free t-shirt pattern from So Sew Easy.  Multi-size free sewing pattern with step by step photo instructions.

Cutting your fabric

The lower front and the upper back are designed to be cut on the fold of the fabric.

  • To cut on the fold – fold your fabric along the grainline, just folding over enough to accommodate the size of your pattern piece.  Then place the edge of the pattern piece on the fold of the fabric and hold it in place there.  You can use proper pattern weights, pins, or even tins of tuna.
  • Other pieces are cut from doubled fabric to cut 2 opposites.  The cross-over pieces need to be cut 4 times, 2 for each side so make sure you cut opposites.
  • Take note of the stretch of the fabric and make sure your pattern pieces are lined up the right way.  The maximum stretch should go across and around your body not top to bottom.
  • Before you cut ANYTHING, make sure that you have enough fabric for all of the pattern pieces.
  • Once everything is laid out, cut out your pattern pieces.

If you need further directions for cutting out your fabric, follow the directions for the Summer Drape Top.

 

Step By Step Construction

Equipment and materials:

Essential

  • Sewing machine and thread, sewing basics such as scissors

Optional but useful

Follow through these step by step instructions and enjoy!

Stitches for knits – if your machine has a stretch stitch (looks like a lightening bolt), you can use this one, otherwise I suggest a long narrow zig-zag stitch which will allow your knit seams to stretch without breaking the threads.  Test out various stitches on scraps of your fabric before sewing. For best results, use a needle designed for knit fabrics.

  • Take two upper front pieces and with right sides facing, sew the short center back seam that goes behind the neck.  Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • Repeat for the other two pieces.  Press the seams open.

Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!

  • Lie one front piece on top of the other with right sides facing.  Pin along the two long edges.  Take note of the notches on one of the long edges and stop stitching at this point on each end.Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • Trim the seams down in size, then turn the tubes the right way out.  Press.Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • Lie the long piece flat.  Pick up one end and give it a complete 360 degree turn so you have two twists in the center.  Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • Lie back flat and match up the small central area underneath the notches.  Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • Pin these two edges right sides together on either side of the central seam.  Stitch both to the center, finishing at the previous line of stitching.  Press.Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • Fold the center back piece along the fold line with WRONG sides together.  Pin the bottom and sides, or loosely baste in place close to the edge.

Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!

  • Place the doubled over back piece on top of the bust piece with right sides together.  Match the fold line on the back with the seam line on the bust piece.  Pin the back to the front ONLY through one layer of front fabric.

Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!

  • Open up the other piece of fabric from the bust pieces, bring it over and in front and line up with the seam you have already pinned. One at a time, remove the pins and line up the 4th layer of fabric, pinning the through all 4 layers.  It’s going to look a bit strange – like this –>

Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!

  • Sew through all 4 layers.  Trim the seams, turn the right side out and press.Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • You can now try on the top part of the top and check for fit.  Adjust where necessary then resume.
  • With right sides together, pin then sew the center back seam for the lower part of the top.

Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!

  • Place the lower front on top of the back, right sides together, matching side seams.  Pin, sew and then trim the seams.Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • With the lower part inside out, place the top pieces inside with the right sides together.  Match up center front and center back and the two side seams.  Match up raw edges, pin and then sew through all layers.  Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • Trim the seams and press.Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!
  • Time to try on your top/dress and check you are happy with the fit, and see if you want to adjust the final length.  Hem the bottom using your favorite method for knits.  I like to stabilize the bottom hemline with fusible stay tape, then stitch with a twin stretch needle.

Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!Twist front top - free t-shirt pattern and step by step photo tutorial from So Sew Easy.  Love this t-shirt and it's so quick and easy to make!easy to make!

 

I think this unusual twist front top would look great in a print too.

Twist front top, free t-shirt pattern from So Sew Easy.  Multi-size free sewing pattern with step by step photo instructions.

I’d love to hear your feedback on this free t-shirt pattern and tutorial, and see your photos and links to your finished t-shirts or dresses – please leave a comment below, or drop me an email using the link at the top of the page.

 

Need some ideas for fabrics for this project?

 

Girl Charlee

Girl Charlee – fab knits at $5 a yd

Designer knits from Fabric.com

Designer knits from Fabric.com

Jersey fabrics at JoAnns

Jersey fabrics at JoAnns in solid, print and floral

Bright solid, prints and unusual knits at Hancocks

Bright solid, prints and unusual knits at Hancocks

Organic Knits from Honey Be Good

Organic Knits from Honey Be Good

Cute, kawaii and prints you won't find elsewhere from ModeS

Cute, kawaii and prints you won’t find elsewhere from ModeS


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Authored by: Deby at So Sew Easy

 

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31 Responses to Twist Front Top – free t-shirt pattern

  1. This is awesome! Thanks for the pattern, I will certainly try this!

  2. Jillian says:

    AMAZING! I’ve always wanted to make myself a shirt/dress like this because NOWHERE carries a size that doesn’t either hang or stretch too tight in the chest. I’m a 40″ bust/ 30″ waist. I was thinking of adding pleats or darts to the top to accommodate this… suggestions?

    • Deby Coles says:

      Hi Jillian and thanks for dropping by. You have quite a big difference between bust and waist measurement so it all depends on how you want the final garment to look. You should certainly use the larger size for cutting the bust. But below the bust is up to you. If you have a small back, you could cut the back pieces in a smaller size. Then cut the corresponding sizes for the bottom pieces so that the two seams will be the same size where they meet. Then you can adjust the fit at the sides to make it slimmer around your smaller waist if you like. There is also a center back seam you can use to take in the back where this may be too loose too. Of course if you wanted to make it dress length, the loose fit may be more flattering to skim over waist and hips and be more flowing.

      My suggestion – use some cheap or left over fabric to make a test of the bodice part before you cut into your final fabric – the bodice will be more difficult to adjust if the fit isn’t right. The fit will very much depend on how much stretch you have in the fabric, and also to some degree your personal preference as to have close a fit you would like. I hope it works out, and that you will send me some pictures once you are done!

      • Jillian says:

        Will try. Thanks! I want it to be covering and supportive without being too large that its saggy (or the under-bust is so big that I look pregnant because it hangs straight down) and not so small that I’m in danger of a wardrobe malfunction. :-P I’ll try the large top with medium or small bottom, and maybe pleat the extra fabric under the bust (my biggest problem is usually having enough give in that area to not spill out over the sides). Test bodice is definitely a good idea. I’ll get a photo up when I’m done!

  3. Jessica W says:

    This is such a cute top, thanks for the tutorial and pattern! I really think I will make this!

  4. Pam says:

    Such a versatile pattern with the different strap options. Looks fabulous on you, Deby!!!

  5. Beautiful top! I love how halter tops look. This one is really flattering. And you designed it? How talented of you! Pinning it!

  6. Jayne says:

    I love this top! It’s super sexy and looks so comfortable, you look amazing!

  7. Kristie says:

    Think this would work as a swim top, assuming you used the proper fabric, and support for the top?
    Cute top, thanks for sharing a pattern!

    • Deby Coles says:

      Great idea – I’m sure it would work. But you would certainly want to use the correct fabric, line it, and probably go down a size. And adding some elastic under the bust, perhaps shortening the straps a little, to give some extra support. I’d be interested to see this – do send in some details if you make your own.

  8. Janet says:

    Hi Deby,

    Great tutorial! :) Thank you for the mention.

    ~Janet @ girlcharlee.com

  9. fabulous as always! looking great too girl! loved it

  10. Dawn Morris says:

    Hi Deby,

    I just wanted to tell you that I made your top this morning and absolutely LOVE it!! Your instructions were very easy to follow and the pattern is perfect! Thank you so much for sharing it with everyone. I’m definitely going to make another top and probably a dress as well. Thanks again!

    Dawn

    • Deby Coles says:

      Wonderful Dawn, I’m glad it turned out well for you. It’s easy right? If you want to share, I’d love to see any photo. You can send it using the email link above, and with your permission I’d feature it on the site too if you like.

      • Dawn Morris says:

        That would be great! I will email you a photo as soon as I can. Maybe it will inspire other people to want to make this top as well! I am already starting on a second one for my best friend and I know she’s going to love it. Thanks again, Deby!!

  11. justine says:

    What a great looking top. Nice to see a sexy unfrumpy pattern out there!

  12. Ooh I love free patterns! Thanks for sharing!

  13. emily says:

    Deby! That looks so great on you! I love the color too. Just wanted to let you know I’m featuring this in my weekend round-up. I really appreciate you linking to my Tasteful Tuesday party. I would love for you to share, tweet, or +1 the feature… thanks a bunch!
    Emily @ nap-timecreations.com

  14. Jamie says:

    Such a cute top! Amazing tutorial. Thank you so much for sharing,
    Jamie

  15. Hannah says:

    This is so pretty … I wonder if it would look weird on me given that I have a short neck and broad shoulders. Oh well, bookmarking it anyway! I’ll just make it in a color that looks good on my sister as well.

    Do you know Kollabora, the crafting/DIY site? I’m wondering if you’d be interested in posting this over there … a lot of members are making tank tops these days, but this one is different and eye-catching, and I don’t think I’d be the only one who wanted to try it.

  16. ellie says:

    i love your desings and would love to make them but for some reson i cant down load them as the link doesnt work :( could you let me know if there is any other way i can down load them ?

  17. Chelsea says:

    Congratulations! You are one of our Top 5 Features from our our Pattern Party at Get Your Crap Together! Stop by and get a feature button! Thanks for linking up!

  18. Ileana says:

    The top looks gorgeous and can really look nice dressed up or down. It doesn’t hurt that you are both a beautiful and elegant model. Keep up the awesome work.

  19. Anne says:

    This is a beautiful design :) im just learning how to sew and will be trying this pattern when im a bit more confident!

  20. mez says:

    I have made this top and your easy sundress as I am going on a cruise next week thought they would be perfect, thank you for allowing the use of your patterns

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