Deep V cutout shirt/dress: Semi-Wearable Muslin and DiY

Hey everyone. This time, I have a legit excuse for the time between posts; I moved! To an apartment with a big white wall, no less, so I can hopefully take better pictures.

Recently, I saw a lovely shirt with lots of cutouts. Kind of an edgy, slightly more covered take on a super low-cut shirt. But it was for sale for several hundred dollars. So I decided to recreate it and share my process.

This is a wearable muslin because I didn’t interface the yoke material at all. I love the result, so I do plan on doing this again in the future with materials bought for the purpose, instead of stuff I had lying around. At that point, I will interface the cutout yoke first, then follow the same steps.

Materials:

  • 1 yard of jersey (half a yard for a shirt)
    – For my muslin I used a cheap thrift store dress. You know the kind, just a generic stretch jersey dress. I didn’t feel like drafting anything for the muslin. You could also easily modify a tank top using this method!
  • 1/8-1/4 yard leather, pleather, vinyl, or other reasonably sturdy fabric with a small amount of give
  • 1/8-1/4 yard medium weight interfacing
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Needle and thread or sewing machine

Note: I started with a dress because I planned on it being a dress. I ended up liking it better as a shirt. Play with it! Have fun!

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Draw deep ‘V’ (or ‘U’ in this case) into jersey dress.

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Cut out. Cut square of yoke material that stretches from bottom of U to shoulders. (For the back I did a triangle instead of a square, but you could easily do either) Don’t forget to cut out a hole for your neck!

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Mark a grid on your yoke fabric using a ruler. Use this grid as a guideline to draw diamonds repeating throughout. My grid is a little bit lazy here.

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It’s a little hard to see, but I took chalk and marked the center of the diamonds I was going to cut out; you may be able to see that you have to stagger them so that no cut diamonds are touching. Easier to see than explain. I repeated this method on the back yoke and joined them at the shoulders.

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Cut out and pinned on the dress form! At this point I attached the front and back at the shoulders, tucked the raw edges under, and hand sewed the whole yoke to the dress. I also removed the existing straps from the dress, which may or may not apply to you.

Sorry I don’t have more pictures of the back. You can extrapolate, right? It’s the same process, but with a slightly different shape. If you were to wear this out, I might suggest sewing thin swimsuit-style cups in, just to prevent showthrough. Or wear a contrast bandeau under, I suppose.I wish I had more occasions to wear this style of top; I’d like to play around with different shapes and textures, beading, even patterns.

Here’s the front and the back.

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Not bad for a rough draft! It does warp a little bit with movement, so, again, I really stress the importance of interfacing the yoke material so it lies flat. But I’m not sure when I’ll get around to making the full version of this top, and I wanted to get the tutorial out there. Hope it helps someone!

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