Sew Guide » 3 ways to Make an OFF SHOULDER TOP – Free sewing tutorial

3 ways to Make an OFF SHOULDER TOP – Free sewing tutorial

An off shoulder style looks casual and at the same time very glamorous. If you have good shoulders nothing like this top. This very easy to sew top can show off your lovely collar bones to perfection. A lovely bohemian look can be achieved by pairing this top with a long maxi skirt and some long necklaces.

off shoulder top sewing pattern

3 ways to make an off shoulder top

Method 1 Off shoulder top with long sleeves

off shoulder top pattern

Note : if the top length is ending near hip you will have to take the hip width when marking B-D. Mine ends somewhere under the waist so I am using the same width for A-C & B-D

Step 1

Cut out the pattern pieces and the bias tape ( fabric strip cut crosswise would do)

how to sew an offshoulder top 

Step 2

Join the armholes of the sleeves and bodice.The sleeve will be joined by the slash we have made on the sleeves to the slashed cut on the top corners of the bodices.

Then join the sides together. You can start from the hem and continue stitching in one line till the sleeve hem. Do the same for both sides. You will get a bodice which looks like the picture below

Step 3

Join the binding on the top edge . I wanted a contrast edge so joined it from the inside of the garment to the front of the garment so that the binding is visible outside. You can take it to the back as well – for that join from the face of the fabric and take to the back. 

Start binding from the back so that the joint is not visible in the front. If you want to know more about bias binding checkout the tutorial.  

Do leave a 1″ opening in the back of the bodice on the binding stitching so that you can insert the elastic. Use a safety pin to insert elastic through the casing . Securely close stitch the elastic with two or three stitching of zig zag stitch. Sew the opening closed. 

Step 4

Hem the bodice and sleeves with a turned under hem . 

Method 2 Off shoulder top with extended yoke

This method is for a top with an extra extended yoke piece – You can use a lace fabric or embroidered fabric as this yoke or even a contrasting coloured fabric.

This is a customisable pattern , very easy to sew with just 4 pieces of rectangular fabric pieces joined together with some easy seams and some elastic . I made the top for my young daughter and I can vouch that this top can be made in less than an hour ( even including the embroidery around the edges). 

off the shoulder top pattern

Off the shoulder top pattern.

A-B = Measure top of bust from middle of armhole to other side. Divide this by 4

C-D = Bust round /4 + 1.5″

G-H = waist round/4 + 1.5″

E-F = Hip round /4 + 1.5″

off shoulder top pattern

Step 1.

Cut out the pattern pieces.

off the shoulder pattern.

Step 2

Join the fabric pieces if you have not got a long strip. It is better to make a french seam, because you will get a clean fabric edge this way. To make this seam stitch the seams first wrong sides together, them trim the seam allowance and stitch the seam enclosed from the wrong side.Checkout the post on sewing seams for more details and other options. 

Join the strips together to make a tube as well.

off shoulder top diy.

Step 3

Fold the top edge of the fabric tube some 1 inch

off the shoulder top sewing pattern

Stitch along the edge. Leave a 1 -2 ” opening for inserting elastic

off shoulder top pattern

Step 4

Finish the bottom edge of the tube with  rolled edge or a simple turnde under finish with your sewing machine.

off shoulder top diy tutorial

Step 5

I finished the fabric tube bottom edge with a graded blanket stitch. I have a post on 11 variations of the blanket stitch. If you are interested check it out.

off the shoulder top offshouldertop


Step 6

Sew the side edges of the bodice together. Finish the top and bottom edges by turning under 1/4 inch twice.

 Step 7

Press the center fold in the fabric tube . 


Step 8.

Keep the bodice inside the fabric tube the top edges together. Align the center fold of the tube with the center of the bodice for the front as well as the back. Adjust the top edges so that the bodice top edge is down some 3/4  inch down ( Elastic casing is extended out )

off shoulder top

Pin and top stitch in place from the front along the elastic casing seam line ( so that there would not be two stitching lines) 

off shoulder top pattern

Step 9

Insert the elastic ( 1/2 inch) in the casing with a safety pin and join the edges of the elastic with 4-5 back stitches. Close the opening with sewing machine or hand stitches. The top is finished

Method 3 – Off shoulder top from a tshirt.

You need a slightly oversized tshirt with a crew neckline ( neckline very close to the neck) to make this one.
Cut off the crew neck band very close. Donot cut too low and regret later. Turn under the top cut edge and sew a casing for elastic . Use 1/4 inch elastic threaded through this casing and you have a very easy 10-minute-sew off shoulder top

If you have a smaller tshirt you can get away without sewing  the elastic on top edge but you have to be very very careful that you donot cut too much from the neck. Very close to the neck band is the right way to cut. Try it and cut again if you want to. In this case you will have a very casual cut edge but as tshirt material donot fray this casual look is super cool

Another option is  this offshoulder cape diy. Checkout the tutorial to make this in the post on 8 types of ways to make a cape here

cold shouldered cape

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