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How to make blouses for women

Updated on June 2, 2015

Learn how to make blouses for women by replicating your favorite top

Learn how to make blouses and the pattern from your favorite top.

Here you can learn how to replicate your favorite tops from the material you choose in easy steps with photos. You do not need very much equipment or need to be an expert sewer.

Use your blouse to be part of your full outfit or accompany it with some accessories to complete the look.

I should point out that this isn't me showing you how to make blouses, this is my girlfriend (a very talented individual fashion designer) who has been making her own clothes for some time and has studied fashion and currently does the window displays for some top retailers. At this moment in time she would like to remain anonymous though. When she is ready we will link to some of her exclusive ranges, but for now.....

We are starting here with an easy top or blouse, with no zips or elastic. One of the most important things to replicate your favorite top is to use the same type of material. Therefore if it is stretchy, use stretchy material, if not, use material that isn't. The pattern and color is your choice.

Image: by peterb6001, all images on this page are our personal images with exception to Amazon or eBay photos.

What do Il need to make a blouse?

  1. Your favorite top to copy the pattern
  2. Enough Material to make the blouse
  3. A large piece of paper
  4. Scissors
  5. Tailor Chalk
  6. Tape Measure
  7. Pins
  8. Thread and needles
  9. Sewing Machine

Brother CS6000i Sewing Machine - My friends favorite affordable machine

The Brother CS6000i is the best selling sewing machine on Amazon. It has over 1000 5 star reviews and and average of 4.4 stars.

A brief summary of the reviews tells me it is great value for the money and easy to use. Many have replaced their machines that they have had for years and been really pleased with this one.

The manufacturers are so confident with this product that they offer a 25 year warranty and free phone support for life.

Chose from 60 sewing stitches, adjust speeds, it has an automatic needle threader and easy winding bobbin, perfect for everything from clothes to quilts.

Blouse Pattern
Blouse Pattern

How to make a top pattern for the front of your top or blouses for women

This is the first step in my how to make blouses for women guide.

First you need to to make a pattern for your blouse.

Simply take a large sheet of paper and fold your favorite top in half and place it on top of the paper.

In the image on the right is a blouse folded in half, and the blouse pattern made earlier to the right of the blouse.

Pin the top or blouse along the strait edge of the paper and around the sides, securing it to the paper.

Now roughly draw around the blouse or top onto the paper to give you the general shape. The neckline should be copied and the back line, as shown on the pre made pattern.

Once the outline is drawn you can now cut along the line on the paper to create your pattern like the one on the right hand side of the photo.

Image: Blouse Pattern, by peterb6001

Cutting the front of the blouse - A blouse can be made in two parts, the front and the back

Take your material and fold it in half so that it is doubled. Now pin the paper blouse pattern that you have prepared to the fabric.

Draw around the paper with your tailor chalk onto the fabric leaving approximately an inch around each side.

Cut along the tailor chalk lines.

For the front of the blouse you should cut along the neck line that you had marked (see the marked red line in the first image, and the last two photos above are folding and cutting the neck line).

Image: Making the front of the top, by peterb6001

The back part of the blouse
The back part of the blouse

Cutting the back of the blouse around the pattern

Again, fold your material so that it is doubled and pin your blouse pattern to the material.

Draw around the pattern with the tailor chalk on to the material, leaving an inch spare.

Cut along the tailor chalk.

This time cut around the full outline ignoring the neck line.

Image: The back line of the blouse, by peterb6001

Now you have the front and back fabrics ready - You can simply sew the front to the back, but first.....

front and back fabrics
front and back fabrics

So now you should have two pieces of fabric doubled over looking something like this.

Add the pleats for the breasts - Breast pleats should be added to the front blouse fabric

How to make breast pleats on a blouse

Image: Breast Pleats, by peterb6001

Adding pleats for the breasts makes your blouse look more natural to the shape of the body.

Pleats are only needed for non elasticated material, this is because the pleat will make the fabric curve.

To do this, take the piece of fabric for the front of the blouse. On the inside measure two inches down from the bottom of the armpit. You can copy the original top as shown in the photos above.

Make a pleat by folding 2 inches of fabric and fading about 4 inches across the blouse. This triangular affect will stop your blouse from pushing and squashing your breasts and you can play a little with the sizes to get the perfect fit for you.

Obviously do this on both the right and left of the fabric that is for the front of the blouse.

Sewing the front to the back
Sewing the front to the back

Sew the front blouse fabric to the back blouse fabric

Here you can either use a sewing machine or sew by hand.

Set your sewing machine to single seam with the color cotton of your choice.

Sew all around the edge joining the front and back fabrics.

Leave about half an inch so that afterwards you can put a hem all the way around.

Image: Sewing the front to the back, by peterb6001

Try it on to check the fit and now sew the hem

So you should now have something that forms the shape of a blouse being a little ragged around the edges.

To make the hem around the edges simply fold over a small amount of the fabric into the inside of the blouse.

Put in pins where necessary to help you do this.

Try to create as strait a line as possible and sew the overlap from the inside all the way around the blouse.

The blouse is now ready to wear without any extras such as zips, buttons or a tulle.

Image: by peterb6001

A strip of transparent material was added to the middle of the back of the blouse but this is only a little extra and we can go into more detail on the extras on other pages.

So in less than 1 hour you have a new blouse, this one made out an old skirt. Time to let your imagination run a little wild. Up next we will be doing the easiest skirts and accessories.

Sewing machines on eBay

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Wrights 881426 Glass Head Multicolor Pins, 150-Pack
Wrights 881426 Glass Head Multicolor Pins, 150-Pack

150 pins to tack your fabric to your paper

 
24 Assorted Spools of Thread Full Size 200 Yards Each
24 Assorted Spools of Thread Full Size 200 Yards Each

A selection of different colored sewing threads for your fabrics

 
Clover Triangle Tailors Chalk, White
Clover Triangle Tailors Chalk, White

Here are some tailor chalks. If you have never heard of them they look like big guitar plectrums, to mark your fabric, and will last for a long long time.

 

A big thank you has to be given to the talented designer who made this blouse and let me take photos.As soon as I can I will show you some exclusives here from her, so keep checking back for more of her patterns.

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    • Arachnea profile image

      Tanya Jones 3 years ago from Texas USA

      great lens. i've done something similar before. in passing a friend's car, a favorite short was torn. so i took it apart and created a pattern from the pieces. since i keep all of my favorite patterns on muslin, i've been able to duplicate them easily and modify. i will try this way to create patterns from other favorite items.

    • Sojournstar Media profile image

      Angela Hobbs 3 years ago from The TARDIS

      Thank you

    • peterb6001 profile image
      Author

      Peter Badham 4 years ago from England

      @greenspirit: Thank you Greenspirit, very helpful, I will ask her and maybe add this info to the page :)

    • greenspirit profile image

      poppy mercer 4 years ago from London

      You are right Peter, copying something you love is a great idea. Just one point...if you do have a bust beyond tiny, your blouse will have darts (sewn up triangular sections) in the the side seam of the blouse on each side at bust level. These darts are important because they give the blouse the shape to go around the curve of the bust. If you just lay out the blouse and cut round it, you haven't added the extra material that will go into the dart and the blouse won't fit. You need to snip open the stitching on the dart, open the fabric up, iron it flat, and then lay it out for copying. Otherwise the directions are great.

    • peterb6001 profile image
      Author

      Peter Badham 4 years ago from England

      @anonymous: Glad it turned out well for you :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      So easy and beautiful, I just made my first one and am so happy :)

    • marktplaatsshop profile image

      marktplaatsshop 4 years ago

      This is very easy to do, I will try this, thanks for sharing.

    • peterb6001 profile image
      Author

      Peter Badham 4 years ago from England

      @kimberlyschimmel: Exactly her thinking :)

    • kimberlyschimmel profile image

      Kimberly Schimmel, MLS 4 years ago from Greensboro, NC

      I also like to make patterns from favorite garments--why reinvent the wheel when I already have something I love that fits?

    • profile image

      sherioz 4 years ago

      This is cute. So easy and comes out so nice.

    • jayavi profile image

      jayavi 4 years ago

      Brother Sewing Machine is a good machine. Thanks for sharing about making a blouse.

    • profile image

      lionmom100 4 years ago

      Nice tutorial. I have used this technique to make blouses before and to make pants. Good luck to your designer girlfriend.

    • ItayaLightbourne profile image

      Itaya Lightbourne 4 years ago from Topeka, KS

      Great tutorial for making a blouse! I've done this and it is amazing how easy it is to copy one of your favorite tops this way. Thank your awesome designer for lending her tips and photos with us all! :)

    • profile image

      williamwiley11 4 years ago

      WOW! what a great lens. I love this:)

    • peterb6001 profile image
      Author

      Peter Badham 4 years ago from England

      @anonymous: Thanks Tipi :) I can't take any credit though as I only watched it being made :)

    • peterb6001 profile image
      Author

      Peter Badham 4 years ago from England

      @LiteraryMind: Thanks LiteraryMind, she's a very clever girl

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Very creative lens, Peter. You just amaze me with your helpful tutorials.

      That really is a nice blouse you made there. Very well done! :)

    • LiteraryMind profile image

      Ellen Gregory 4 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      Looks quick and easy enough. The finished blouse is really cute and wearable.

    • peterb6001 profile image
      Author

      Peter Badham 4 years ago from England

      @SusanDeppner: That's a nice story. Well if you do make something please let me know. I'd love to include a section here with photos of homemade clothes or accessories :)

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 4 years ago from Arkansas USA

      Back when I used to sew a lot, I used to do this. In fact, reading this brought to mind a top I made to go with a skirt that I bought, which made a really nice outfit. I actually bought a skirt to fit me and then the biggest skirt out of the same fabric that I could find. I used the fabric from the second skirt to make the blouse. Wish I still had that outfit. But now I'm inspired!

    • peterb6001 profile image
      Author

      Peter Badham 4 years ago from England

      @pumpum: Great, let me know how it turns out :) we will be adding more, different types of skirts etc.

    • pumpum profile image

      pumpum 4 years ago

      Wow, this is great. I will definitely try this, because I have some old stuff that I don't wear but I could do an experiment. Thanks! pinned and shared.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I haven't thought of doing this but it is easy enough to follow.

    • LisaAuch1 profile image

      Lisa Auch 4 years ago from Scotland

      I love this, so easy and simple to re use and old skirt and transform into a beautiful new very chic top!