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Pattern Hack: Lengthen a Blouse to a Tunic

A great way to add longevity to a kid’s top pattern is to lengthen it into a tunic. Today, I have a tutorial using the Anno and Pum Kid’s Peasant Top sewing pattern to do just that!

Pattern Hack: Lengthen a Blouse to a Tunic

There are two ways to lengthen a garment into a tunic. First, you can add length vertically without changing the width of the hem line. Use this method if it’s your first time pattern hacking, it is easier and faster. It is also suitable if the child you’re sewing for is straight up and down, without much hip width.

Pattern Hack: Lengthen a Blouse to a Tunic

Adding length only

The second method adds length vertically and also adds width to the hem. I am using this method in this tutorial. I am making this top for my 6 year old daughter because she has some hip width that requires extra ease. 

Pattern Hack: Lengthen a Blouse to a Tunic

Adding length and width

To start, you will need the front and back pattern pieces, and an idea of how much length you would like to add. I am making the 7-8 size and adding 4 inches. I love this Omnigrip ruler that is 4” wide. 

Pattern Hack: Lengthen a Blouse to a Tunic

Select a place that is about mid-way down the pattern piece and place your ruler perpendicular to the center front line. Mine is 5” down from the point of the armscye (remember this number, as you will repeat the process on the back piece). Draw a line horizontally across the pattern piece.

Repeat the process on the back pattern piece.

Cut along the horizontal lines.

The next steps are much easier if you happen to have a cutting mat with 1” grid squares. Take the top part of your front pattern piece and align it on a vertical and horizontal straight. Next, take the bottom portion of this same pattern piece and move it straight down 4” (again, this is much easier with a grid underneath). Because I am also adding width at the hemline, I moved my pattern piece 1” to the left (away from the center line). If you are not adding width, you will not do this step.

At this point, you will need to fill in the pattern with extra paper. You can lay tracing paper on top and make a totally new piece, or you can put it underneath, tape it together, and draw new lines. I added the vertical center front line, sketched in the 1” of new hemline, and also redrew the side seam.

Use a ruler to draw the new side seam, connecting a point from the end of the armscye to the hem (this pattern has a split side seam, so my bottom point is just above the split).

Here is my final pattern piece cut out.

Repeat the process for your back piece. Move the bottom part 4” down and 1” over.

Use a ruler to draw the side seam.

Lay your final pattern pieces on top of each other to make sure that the side seams match up in length.

And here are your two final pattern pieces!

Cut your fabric as normal and proceed with your pattern sewing instructions. Your top has now been hacked into a tunic! Your kiddo will enjoy years of wear as they get taller and the tunic is transformed into a top.

Anno and Pum Kid's Peasant Blouse hack

If you like this trim sleeve, stay tuned for that hack next week!