Thursday, May 10, 2018

T-Shirt Tango/Cowl Neck Tee

Thanks so much to all of you who sent such supportive messages on my post about my extremely out of control studio. Stay tuned for next week's video. The cleanup will not be completed, but progress will be made. Some of you asked questions. I will answer those questions when I do the next video. 

The beginning of the T-Shirt Tango posts! Always fun to start something new :)

We'll begin with the Cowl Neck Tee. As you'll see, it's very easy to do.

I'm using Londa's Creative Threads Terrific T pattern. If by chance you missed yesterday's post, I am sponsoring a giveaway of the pattern, so be sure to visit THIS post and leave a message for a chance to win.

I like this pattern as it's truly a basic pattern. I am using the round neckline that sits just at the base of the neck. Her pattern offers a straight side seam which gives a relaxed fit, or a tapered side seam for a little more fit through the waistline. 

I took the basic pattern and created a sloper. To do this, I removed the seam allowances and then transferred the pattern to a piece of poster board. By removing the seam allowances, I will never be confused once I begin manipulating the pattern as to where I need to add seam allowance and where the seam allowance was left on the pattern. I know that I need to add seam allowance to each and every seam.    

Now that I have a basic sloper, I can trace around it to begin my design. 

I did not want my cowl neckline to fall too far below my bust area, so I measured down 3" below my armhole and squared a line across the front bodice pattern. 

Cut on the line from center front to the side seam, being careful not to cut through the edge.
I spread my cutline open 3 1/2". For a less dramatic drape, 2 1/2" will be fine.

Rather than cut the entire pattern all over again, I simply taped the piece I had cut onto another piece of paper to develop my cowl. 
The center front edge of the pattern was extended up.
I did not want the neckline to be close to my neck, so I marked the shoulder 2" from the shoulder edge. From that point I developed my cowl facing. 

In the picture below, you can see that my ruler is resting along side the center front line that was extended from the original pattern. From the neckline to the top of the cowl facing, measure up 7". From the 7" mark, round a line back to the mark that was made to establish a 2" wide shoulder seam.  

The final pattern. You do not need to cut the pattern as  a full front as I did. The pattern can be placed on the fold of your fabric. 

Remember to reduce the shoulder seam on the back pattern to 2" as you did the front. 

If you would like construction instructions, let me know and I will be happy to do a video and walk you through it.

Cowl neck tees are wonderful to have in your pattern collection. This tee can be worn with jeans, and paired with a skirt. The pattern can also be extended into a dress, so it is extremely versatile.


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  1. Love this! Thanks for the tutorial.

  2. Thanks for posting this. I got lost in the instructions though...Could you do a video, Please?

  3. I am sitting here, mouth agape. I had no clue that's how these were formed.

    I'm excited now!!! I was going to buy an OOP pattern with back cowl/drape but I can just DIY now. YAY!!!!

  4. Thank you, I have spent the last few days looking for a cowl neckline that is not complicated. Perfect!

  5. Love cowls, so flattering. Would be helpful to see how you add seam allowance back on the shoulder - do you add across shoulder and cowl, but only sew the shoulder seam so cowl allowance flips under?

    1. I’ll do a video so it’s all clear ­čÄł

  6. Thank you so much for your detailed instructions. I would appreciate a video on the construction of this T-shirt.
    Thank you

  7. Must try this method. It's so much easier than the way I was taught. Thank-you.

  8. What a great basic pattern ! I’d love a video - your drawings are very helpful . Great way to add pizzazz to a basic tee - Thx

  9. I would LOVE a construction video since I have a knit block and have been itching to try a cowl. :)

  10. Looking forward to the video!

  11. Very creative. Thanks for the information. Most cowls have far too much fabric for a small person. I want to try this.

  12. Thank you, a video would be so helpful. Love cowl necklines.

  13. I love this!Well I love everything you do!!!

  14. I love this!! Well I love everything you show us.

  15. Your time is perfect, Rhonda, since I just pulled out my favorite T pattern (in my case Pamela's Patterns with my adjustments) and wanted a cowl. Thanks for saving me the time of hunting though books.