PATTERN HACK - Panelled bodice on any knit tee or dress

by Tanya Karolia October 24, 2016

PATTERN HACK - Panelled bodice on any knit tee or dress

Hi All, 

Tanya here :-)

So our KNIT tee and dress patterns but would like to personalise them a little?

Adding panels to the bodice on your dress or tee is quite simple and very effective, all you need is your imagination and some tracing paper or tracing fabric. 

To start with trace your whole bodice in the size you need. To do this you'll need to trace on the fold (pic 1), flip the tracing, line up your fold line and trace the other side (pic 2) that way you have your whole bodice flat. 

Then draw on the lines of the panelling you'd like to add to the bodice, see my example below. Here is a good time to think about how you'd sew the panels together - some pieces will need to go first, just like a puzzle. You can see below my bottom two angled pieces need to get sewn together first, then the bottom right, then those pieces will have a nice straight line to attach to the top.

Next cut up your tracing along the 'panelled' lines. These will be your bodice pieces that you'll cut against. I highly recommend numbering your pieces in the order they get sewn together so you don't sew them together in the wrong order -  trust me on this part, okay?

Also write on the tracing which lines you need to add your seam allowance to - you don't need to add to the outside of the bodice, just the lines you chopped up the bodice on, does that make sense? Hopefully the photo below will clear that up.

You can either a) re-trace these pieces and add your seam allowance to the new tracing or b) cut directly off these template pieces and add your seam allowance with a ruler while cutting (example in photo below) I find keeping the patterns seam allowance of 1/4" is the best and least confusing way to go.

So your panelled bodice should now roughly resemble a bodice.

Once you've cut your bodice pieces from the panelled template, you will then need to sew them together using the 1/4" seam allowance and press the seam allowance to one side.

Once you've sewn all the pieces together to form the bodice, clip off any little corners. IF you'd like to top stitch down your seam allowance, then do this now. 

And your panelled bodice is done!!

Finish your dress/tee as per the pattern 

Happy Sewing 

T x



Pattern Used: Jaunty Dress with single circle skirt option

Fabric: Tadah Organic Cotton

Pattern used: Dolman Combo

Fabric: Tadah Organic Cotton

Tanya Karolia
Tanya Karolia


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.