edgy toddler top tutorial

My little Sweetie was short on cute tops for summer so I used some scraps from past projects to put this little one together. It was fast and easy, so I decided to put together a little tutorial for ya'll. Wish my little model were up from her nap, I would take a picture with her wearing it, you get the free store hanger instead!

For this project you will need:
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Main Front:    15" x 10 1/2" piece
Main Back:      15" x 8 1/2" piece
Collar Fabric:   15" x 3" pieces(x 2)
Bottom Back:   15" x 3" piece
Bottom Front:   15" x 5" piece

Tie:                  2" x 45" piece (or 2 x the width of your fabric)
Coordinating Bias Tape (about 28")
Matching Thread

My finished shirt ended up being about a 2T. Just keep in mind that I mentioned the width and length above the piece sizes just in case you are working with a directional fabric.

All seams are 1/2" unless otherwise specified.
This pattern is purely for home use only. Please do not take this and make or sell a pattern of it.

Cut out fabric pieces:
Cut out your fabric pieces as indicated above. You should have one of each piece, except for the collar fabric where you should have two pieces.

Create front piece's bottom edge:
This is the trickiest part of the tutorial, and please keep in mind I am not a professional pattern maker. I would definitely brag about it if I was, but sadly I'm not.
Step One:
Hope the glare in this photo doesn't blind ya! I am a mother by day and a crafter by night, so my pics aren't the greatest. Anyway, I about 2" from the bottom edge of the 15" x 10 1/2" cut into the fabric 1/2", cutting out a 1/2" x 2" rectangle of fabric on both sides.

Step Two:
Measure 14 1/2" from the bottom left corner of fabric (starting at your newly made edge), mark fabric lightly on bottom edge. Line up ruler from top corner of newly made left rectangle to the marking, as seen in the photo below. Cut along this line.
Step Three:
Do likewise to the other side by lining ruler up at the top corner of newly made right triangle to the same marking. Cut along this line, giving you a nice corner. Your fabric piece should now look like the photo below.
Step Four: 
This part is to make the bottom edging for the front of the shirt. Place 5 x 15" bottom piece of fabric right-side down in front of you. Place front main piece of fabric right-side down on top of bottom fabric piece, so the right and left edges overlap about 1/2". Please see picture for details. Use a fabric pencil (or if your me a regular pencil) and trace along the bottom edge of the front fabric piece.

Step Five: 
Make a second line 1/2" above the initial line to create a 1/2" seam line.

Step Six: 
Create a third line three inches from top edge, as shown in the picture. Please don't mind the glare from the light, just as I am not a professional pattern maker, I am also not a professional photographer. 

Sew together front main and front bottom pieces:
Place main fabric right-side up in front of you. Place bottom piece right-side down, lining up top edge of right side of bottom piece with the right side bottom edge of main fabric piece as shown in photo. Pin in place. Sew from right edge to center.

Starting at center (where you left off stitching) pin bottom and main fabric pieces together making your way to the left edges. Sew seam. Clip corner of bottom fabric at center point as pictured to allow fabric to lay flat. Press.

Sew together back main and back bottom pieces:
Place back main fabric piece right-side before you, place back bottom piece wrong-side up on top of main piece. Line up top of bottom piece with bottom of main piece. Pin and sew.

Sew together main and collar pieces:
Place front main fabric piece in front of you right-side up. Place front collar fabric piece on top of main piece wrong-side up. Pin and sew. Do the same with back main and back collar pieces. Press both sides.

Iron in casing:
Place front main fabric piece wrong-side up in front of you. Fold top edge down 1/2" and press. Then maintaining previous fold, bring folded edge down again 3/4" fold. This should create a small casing. Do  not sew casing yet. Do likewise to back main fabric piece.

Create arm holes:
Place front main fabric piece wrong-side up in front of you, keeping casing fold in place. I used a large mat with a ruler for this part, but you could figure it out without one. Place a cd 5" from the top of the folded casing edge and 1 1/2" from left side raw edge, as shown in the picture. Place a ruler 1 1/2" from left raw edge. Using a pencil trace (beginning at top folded edge) along ruler until you meet the curve of the CD, at that point follow the CD to left raw edge. Do the same on right side of front main fabric, and also on left and right sides of back main fabric. Cut along line.

Sew on bias tape:
Unfold casing. Pin on bias tape, and sew on around each armhole. When you are finished your pieces should look like the picture below.

Sew in casing:
Refold casing, press again if needed. Sew seam 3/4" from top fold making sure to catch fabric, creating a 3/4" casing. Sew in both front and back piece casings. 

Sew together front and back pieces:
Place main front piece in front of you right-side up. Place main back piece on top of main piece wrong-side up. Starting at the bottom of either sides arm hole, pin down to bottom edge. Sew 1/2" seam. Do the same for the opposite side.

Hem bottom edge:
Fold bottom edge up 1/2", press. Open fold and bring raw edge to center of fold, creating a 1/4" seam. Press, pin and sew. 

Create tie:
Fold the 2 x 45" fabric piece in half lengthwise, press. Open fold, bring raw edges to newly created fold, press. Refold and press again. This should yield a 1/2" tube of fabric. Sew a seam to close tube. I didn't finish the ends since I was planning on knotting them. If you would rather have ties on both shoulders, you will probably need two 2 x 45" fabric pieces.
Feed tie through casing:
Starting on the side you would like your bow to be, feed tie through the front casing. When you reach the opposite end, feed tie through back casing so tie ends ends up on the side your bow will be. Adjust as desired, knot the tie ends, and tie a bow. Yay, all done!

I hope this tutorial is clear, please feel free to leave any questions or comments below.


Life in my PJs


  1. Wow, I love it. And you didn't use a pattern? Talent! Great job.

    I would love for you to stop by my blog for a fun giveaway! Have a wonderful day! http://alittleknickknack.blogspot.com/2010/06/vacation-week-giveaway.html

  2. Would love it if you would join me for my 2nd linky party tonight!!



  3. Super cute! My nieces would love this!

    Thanks so much for linking up to Pajama Party at Life In My Pjs!!


  4. That is adorable. I love the fabric.