How To: Make a Crop Top Using a Dress Bodice

Hello all my sewing friends!  Tamar here from Sew_much_luv to talk about how to make a crop top using a dress bodice.

I live in Minnesota and we are still in an ice box.  Therefore, it’s time to start sewing cute summer outfits!  I like to call it my coping mechanism.  The new skirt patterns Wren (woven) and Rory (knit) are the perfect place to start for spring and summer sewing!  And a really cute top option is making a crop top with the bodice of your favorite dress!  The benefit of using dress bodices is that there are sooooo many cute bodices to choose from!!!  For this outfit, I used the drop waist bodice of Isla.  The drop waist is obviously a little longer.  If you want a shorter crop top, use any dress bodice that is not a drop waist bodice.  I’ll show an example of a shorter crop top later in this post.  

Let’s get this sewing party started.  First, construct your bodice according to the instructions in the tutorial.  Next, measure the width of the bottom of the bodice.  To find the circumference of the bottom of the bodice, double this measurement.  My bodice was 11 inches wide, making it 22 inches in circumference.

You want the length of your band to be 85% of the circumference of your bodice.  Let’s do the math.  (22 inches x .85 = 18.7)  Now add the 6/8 inch for the seam allowance (18.7 + .75 = 19.45).  I made my band 4” x 19.5”  If you want a wider or narrower band add or subtract from the 4 inch length.

Sew the short ends of the band together right sides together.  Turn right side out.  Fold in half lengthwise, wrong sides together. Press.

Quarter the band and the bottom of the bodice.  Match the quarter points.  Stretch the band slightly to fit.  Sew, stretching the band without stretching the bodice.

Flip the band down and press the seam allowance toward the bodice.

As I mentioned before, you can use a regular length bodice for a shorter crop.  You can finish shorter crops with a band as well.  Or, if you want the crop to be closer to a sports bra length, you can finish it with elastic.  To do this you simply need to pre-stretch a length of elastic.  Then use a zigzag or serger to attach the elastic to the bottom of the bodice, stretching the elastic slightly as you sew. I used clear elastic on mine.

Fold the elastic under and topstitch with a stretch stitch or coverstitch.

This crop top is made from the bodice of Diana and the leggings are Tiffany’s bow and ruffle leggings.

Happy Summer Sewing!


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