How to Make Your Own Tunic Top

Things You'll Need

  • Woven fabric of your choice with a good drape
  • Printed pattern
  • Sewing machine
  • Coordinating thread
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Tape measure
  • Needle and thread
  • Trim or ribbons as desired

Long, fluid tunics are comfortable and fashionable for everyday wear. The same basic tunic pattern can be embellished or altered in a number of ways; for example, you can make a tunic that is slimmer or in an a-line style. Whether you need a dressy tunic top to wear with slim black pants and strappy heels or a casual one to throw on with jeans and flip flops, the same construction and tips apply.

Choose a tunic top pattern. You can purchase one at your local fabric store or download one and print it free (see Resources). If you are quite curvy, consider choosing a tunic with some fitting below the bust or an empire waist for a more flattering look. If you have less natural waist definition, choose a tunic with a fuller a-line shape.

Take your measurements. Accurate bust, waist and hip measurements are necessary to choose the right size for your tunic top. If you are making a very loose tunic top or using a tunic pattern that you are familiar with, this may be less critical. You may decide at this time to add length or combine two sizes for a perfect fit from your tunic pattern.

Download and print your tunic pattern if needed. Cut all pieces from printer paper or pattern tissue, lining up and taping together as necessary. If you are using a downloaded pattern, you can also choose to have your pattern printed at a local print shop in a larger format to avoid taping pieces together. This service is typically quite inexpensive.

Cut each pattern piece from fabric, being careful to lay the pieces out according to the diagram provided in the pattern. Follow the sewing instructions included, finishing seams with a zigzag stitch, serger or pinking shears. Be sure to press carefully to create the most professional finish for your tunic top.

Make your tunic your own with trims, ribbons and detailing. Consider adding a band of ribbon near the hem or near an empire bust seam. Hand embroider along the neckline or sleeve hems for a personal touch.


  • Choose soft fabrics for a flattering tunic top.

    Consider shapes and necklines you prefer when choosing a tunic pattern.


  • Keep your tunic modern by choosing crisp and simple patterns or solids.