scoop top free pattern and tutorial

26 Apr

As a part of my guest blogging gig for Britex Fabrics, they recently sent some of their new knit fabric to try out! I was really excited to see that Britex is now offering knit fabric online, and for this project I picked out a super cool Japanese tissue knit with scribbles all over it. I thought it’d be a great fabric to turn into a simple tee using my favorite J.Crew shirt as a launch point, with plenty of my own modifications to get the perfect fit.

And because I want to share the love of my new favorite shirt all over blogland, I thought I’d offer a FREE PATTERN along with my tutorial today!

scoop top pattern & tutorial

I’m calling it the Scoop Top. It’s a scoop neck women’s t-shirt with a french/dolman sleeve. It’s fitted through the bust but then flares out a bit, giving it a really flattering and comfortable fit. I’m offering this free pattern in a size small/medium (since it’s knit, it’s pretty forgiving, size-wise).

scoop top pattern & tutorial


Download the FREE Scoop Top Pattern

Please note: This pattern is untested (except by me) and it is offered in only one size. It’s also the first time I’ve ever digitized a pattern, so please don’t expect perfection! I’m happy to answer questions about it if you ask nicely. This pattern is for personal use only. I reserve the right to refine, grade it to different sizes, and charge for it it sometime in the future. In the meantime, Go To Patterns’ Casual Lady (affiliate link) has a similar fit in a full range of sizes and proceeds go to a great cause.


  • 1.5 yards jersey knit or tissue knit fabric
  • double needle and/or walking foot
  • stay tape or .5″ wide strips of interfacing
*seam allowance is 3/8″ unless otherwise indicated*
Print out and assemble the PDF pattern. There are nine pages – three rows of three. I like to trim off just one long and one short side of each page so I can overlap the pieces and tape accurately – I’ve provided thin margin lines to help you trim and align. At each intersection point, there are circles – match the proper circle pattern up, and refer to the diagram below if you need to. Page numbers should be right side up at the bottom. I flipped pattern pieces to minimize printing but if you keep the numbers on the bottom of each page, it shouldn’t get TOO confusing hopefully.
Be sure to print at 100% (no scaling).
Scoop Top Pattern Layout
In addition to the pattern pieces you’ve cut out, also cut one 2″ by 25″ piece of fabric with stretch running horizontally for the neckband (most stretch along the long edge, not the short edge). If you have a high stretch recovery fabric, you might want to cut this a little shorter but it’s better to cut it a little long and shorten it if you need to later, rather than the other way around. If your fabric doesn’t stretch much, cut it 26″ long to be safe. You’ll want to stretch the neckband so it lies flat on your chest, but you don’t want to stretch it so much you distort the neckline.

scoop top pattern & tutorial

With tissue knit and lighter weight jersey knit, you’ll need to stabilize the shoulder seams, which get the most stress. You can use either stay tape (found at most fabric stores), or thin strips of fusible interfacing (softer). I used stay tape here. Lay it across the wrong-side edge of your shoulder seam.

scoop top pattern & tutorial

Then pin it as you pin the shoulder seams right sides together. Sew/serge and carefully trim away excess stay tape. Press.

scoop top pattern & tutorial

Next prepare your pocket, if you decide to add one (I didn’t on this shirt since the print was so busy, but it looks great on a solid).

scoop top pattern & tutorial

Use a water soluble pen/tailor’s chalk, mark pocket placement from the guide on the pattern on the wearer’s right side. Pin around the sides and bottom of the pocket, and stitch it to your shirt. A walking foot is helpful here to make sure nothing puckers.

Now prepare your neckline. Take your 2″ x 25″ strip of fabric, sew short ends right sides together, then press wrong sides together to form a 1″ wide neckband loop.

scoop top pattern & tutorial

Find the center of the neckband opposite to the seam. Mark it with a pin. Also mark the center front and center back of your shirt’s neckline with a pin.

scoop top pattern & tutorial

Now you can match the center of your neckband to the front pin, and the seam of your neckband to the back pin. Pin the raw edge of the neckband to the neckline, distributing fullness and stretching the neckband evenly as you pin. Sew/serge the neckband on.

scoop top pattern & tutorialscoop top pattern & tutorial

Press seam away from neckband to finish, and topstitch along back neckband if you wish.

scoop top pattern & tutorial

Next, sew/serge the side seams, right sides together. I didn’t use stay tape here, since they are lower-stress seams.

scoop top pattern & tutorial

Your shirt is almost ready! Now to hem. I think sometimes with knit fabrics you can get away with sewing using normal woven methods, especially with interlock or other heavier knits. But with tissue knits and wiggly rayon jersey (which I made another version of this top in), you’ll want to pull out all the tricks so your fabric doesn’t get eaten by your machine. I used tissue paper under the fabric in the other version (see how in this tutorial), which worked well but I didn’t enjoy picking it out later. I’ve also used fusible interfacing in the past, which works too.

This time I went with stay tape AND a double needle AND a walking foot to keep the machine moving smoothly along the fabric. Here it is in pictures:

scoop top pattern & tutorial

It resulted in a really nice finish and didn’t get wavy or “eaten.”

scoop top pattern & tutorial

Repeat this method to hem both sleeves. Carefully trim away excess stay tape so it’s not scratchy on your skin. And you’re done!

scoop top pattern & tutorial

It’s pretty much my perfect shirt – comfortable, flattering, great for layering, with just a slightly longer hemline in the back since I’m sitting on the floor and picking up kids a lot.

scoop top pattern & tutorial

I hope you make a Scoop Top too! If you do, please add it to the skirt as top flickr group, I’d love to see!

scoop top pattern & tutorial

Thanks so much for sending me such fun fabric to work with, Britex!!

61 Responses to “scoop top free pattern and tutorial”

  1. melissa q. April 26, 2013 at 6:18 am #

    This is so cute! And, good to know Britex carries that kind of fabric. I’ve been on a knit fabric kick lately. It seems like this top could also be easily extended to become a dress since you flared it out a little at the hem. I might have to try this since my goal for the summer is to find comfort as much as I can!

  2. Kelly April 26, 2013 at 6:35 am #

    Yay!! This looks great on you and I LOVE that fabric. I can’t wait to try it out!

  3. Kristie April 26, 2013 at 6:48 am #

    Cannot wait to make this! Thank you so much!

  4. Jane April 26, 2013 at 7:12 am #

    such a cute top!! (and model!) Love that fabric, so fun.

  5. Trinh April 26, 2013 at 7:12 am #

    Super cute!

  6. Tara April 26, 2013 at 8:14 am #

    Such a cute top! I’m so impressed with your pattern making skills, good job!

  7. gail April 26, 2013 at 8:31 am #

    look at you, making patterns!! i think this might be the start of something exciting! i’m loving the hem tape tips, i need to try that. your hems look super pro! great shirt :)

    • kristin April 26, 2013 at 12:27 pm #

      Eeep I hope so! It was actually really fun once I got the hang of it. Thanks Gail!!! :)

  8. Shannon April 26, 2013 at 10:45 am #

    This is adorable! I can’t wait to make one! Thanks for the freebie!

  9. Jessica April 26, 2013 at 12:04 pm #

    I want to sing you song right now. It’s by Whitney Houston. And it’s about you. And it rhymes with Crime Fevery Looman.

  10. Sanae April 26, 2013 at 12:21 pm #

    Ooh, a scoop neck AND dolman/kimono sleeves! My favorite design elements – must try!! Thanks for the free pattern and tutorial, Kristin!

  11. Andrea April 26, 2013 at 12:44 pm #

    Soooo flattering! And if I knew how to sew, I’d love the free pattern! Hahaha! ;)

  12. Tanya April 26, 2013 at 1:28 pm #

    Wow, what a great top and tutorial, thanks for all the tips, I’ve recently purchased a lot of modal knits which are beautifully soft and drapey but I think I’ll need to use all your tips to have them turn out well, yay you!

  13. Running WIth Scissors April 26, 2013 at 2:25 pm #

    you’ve been busy! Love the fabric you picked and thanks for the free pattern. Love the idea of the longer hem in the back!

  14. lucinda April 26, 2013 at 2:47 pm #

    Yay! Good for you for your first digitized pattern! And how generous you are to offer it as a free download:) Your tee looks beautiful – great job!

  15. Shannon April 26, 2013 at 3:23 pm #

    Thanks for the free pattern! I love that print!

  16. Jess April 26, 2013 at 3:57 pm #

    awesome! you go girl!

  17. Cherie April 26, 2013 at 5:01 pm #

    YOU ARE SO AWESOME!!! Nice work, girl – I’m super impressed both at your designing skills (which I already knew about) and your new illustrator skills. Teach me! I love this top. I’m curious how easy/hard it would be to scale it up to my size. I might give it a try (someday) and I’ll let you know!! Congrats Kristin, this is HUGE!

  18. Nancy April 26, 2013 at 5:20 pm #

    That does look like a comfy shirt with a great fit, I especially love the fabric you chose! Thanks for sharing your pattern with us, cheers!

  19. Rae April 26, 2013 at 5:46 pm #

    woohoo!! nice top, and love the pattern…can’t wait to give it a try!

  20. Jill April 26, 2013 at 7:45 pm #

    This looks awesome! I can’t wait to try it and am totally excited that you are experimenting with pattern making.

  21. Delia April 26, 2013 at 9:49 pm #

    First, you are adorable. Second, thank you for the pattern, Third, thank you for the great tips on using tissue knit! You are a rock star. :)

  22. girllikethesea April 27, 2013 at 4:20 am #

    I love it! Sadly for me it will be a while before I can fit into a normal tee again, but if I could I would totally give this a try. The fabric you used is really neat. (and your instructions were very thorough *snicker*)

    You just keep upping your coolness factor. Now making patterns? *high five*

  23. erin April 27, 2013 at 5:11 am #

    love this, kristin! i think i’ll try it for the girls first…they are both a women’s smalll. thank you for sharing.

  24. creativekristi April 27, 2013 at 7:17 am #

    I love this! I had never heard of stay tape before but ow I’ll be on the lookout for it! After I have this baby I’ll be trying this pattern out for myself :) Thanks for sharing it! I listed this post in my Share Saturday #spreadbloggylove today. If you want to check it out it’s here:

  25. nestedinstitches April 27, 2013 at 10:21 am #

    Whoot whoot you go girl!! This is so awesome, I love it!! High five on the pattern writing! :-)

  26. carolyn April 27, 2013 at 7:26 pm #

    I’m in! I’m definitely adding this to the to be made pile! It looks fantastic!

  27. Cirque Du Bebe April 27, 2013 at 9:56 pm #

    WOOHOO! Look at you. Cute-as top and you are totally styling Miss Kristin! See, you can work the camera! Hey, big congrats on figuring out how to computerize your own pattern, I’m sure this will open up a whole new world of fun for you. It looks completely over my head but something I’d like to try one day.

  28. Max California April 28, 2013 at 4:49 am #

    Nice one lady! Proud face!

  29. Stef April 28, 2013 at 9:59 am #

    Yeah!! You’re awesome! The top looks great – the pattern is super impressive – that fabric is fabulous!

  30. verykerryberry (@verykb) April 29, 2013 at 3:14 am #

    Really looking forward to trying this out, thankyou for the free pattern. What seam allowance is there on this?

    • kristin April 29, 2013 at 6:21 am #

      It’s 3/8″ except at hems, where you fold up 1/2″ to enclose the stay tape. Thanks for reminding me, I forgot to put that in the post!! :)

  31. Caroline April 29, 2013 at 5:27 pm #

    Congrats on your first digital pattern! Would love to try it out, maybe adding some length for Gungie proportions! Kudos!

  32. Trine April 30, 2013 at 11:38 am #

    It’s so cute, Kristin. Now that KCW is done it’s time for some me-sewing again – and this is definetely on my to do list :-)

  33. Mareike May 1, 2013 at 12:33 pm #

    Hi, I’ve made it! And it is absolutely fabulous!!! Thanks! Thanks! Thanks!

    • kristin May 1, 2013 at 11:23 pm #

      Oh yay!!!!! Thank YOU! I’d love to see a link when you blog it! :)

  34. danawillard May 2, 2013 at 9:32 pm #

    So cool Kristin! Congrats on making a pattern! It looks awesome and so fun to see Anna and Jill’s versions too

  35. sewingrabbit May 3, 2013 at 3:56 am #

    loved you knit fabric tips! The shirt looks fantastic on you – and wow, a free pattern! YOu are so cool :)

  36. missamyjane May 4, 2013 at 7:04 pm #

    oh wow! I really want to try this pattern! It’s so cute! YIkes though…double needle and serging…this intimidates me. But my want of the t-shirt might overpower my fear of the serger and double needle. I don’t even know if my machine does double needle! hmm…

  37. Lala May 5, 2013 at 11:51 pm #

    Hello Kristin! Thanks for the pattern, I just made one and I’m wearing it now at work :). I blogged it here:

    • kristin May 9, 2013 at 7:15 am #

      It looks soooo good! I love it with shorts! What a great print you chose too. Thank you!!

  38. miscellaneouscraftiness May 8, 2013 at 4:18 pm #

    Did I miss the sizing information? (I realize its just in one size, but finished garment measurements or sizing guidelines would be helpful.)

    • kristin May 9, 2013 at 7:19 am #

      I sized it more like ready to wear – I don’t have finished measurements (and those are tough anyway on knit since it stretches) but I wear a size small or medium store bought, depending on the brand and the fit of the shirt. In Rae’s Washi Dress, I’m a medium. But I think it will fit true “smalls” just fine, it’ll just be drapier on them. If you’re unsure, maybe try a muslin in a men’s thrifted t-shirt just to see whether it will work on you?

      As for length, I’m 5’4″ and it fits me perfectly, but Anna of Noodlehead is 5’8″ and it looks like it fit her fine in length too. So again…pretty forgiving. ;)

  39. Spacey Casey May 12, 2013 at 12:03 am #

    This top is so wonderful. It has the best mix of fit and drapey and it is just the thing I’ve been searching for to hide my post-baby belly. I made one tonight and I love it so much that I’m planning on making several more right away. Thank you for sharing!

  40. adela May 26, 2013 at 4:56 am #

    Hola gracias por el patron una cosa tiene margen de costura graciaas

  41. Dee May 29, 2013 at 6:13 am #

    Thank you so much for this amazing and clear tutorial. I have to get some fabric! (never sewn with jersey before)

  42. Allison May 29, 2013 at 6:59 am #

    The pattern looks great! I can’t wait for it to be available in larger sizes!

  43. Charise May 29, 2013 at 10:07 am #

    Thanks for the pattern – Can’t wait to make it!

  44. maria celina May 29, 2013 at 5:29 pm #

    Hola me encanto tu blusa, muy bonita y facil de hacer, gracias por enseñárnosla


  45. Loretta Swan May 29, 2013 at 5:51 pm #

    I could not download the pattern. I would click on it and nothing would happen, if there is a tip please let me know. I would love to make the cute top you have designed. Thank you so much for sharing.

  46. Meg June 3, 2013 at 4:01 pm #

    I wanted to share a sheer version I made using your awesome pattern:

    Thanks so much for sharing, I love this top!

  47. Natalie Ferguson June 11, 2013 at 9:26 pm #

    I love this shirt and really want to make one but I am more like a size L/XL. I checked out the link to Casual Lady but I don’t care for the sleeves on that shirt. Do you have any recommendations on how to resize this to fit me? Perhaps a good resizing tutorial or something? Thanks for the inspiration!

  48. Dawn (Honeybee Cloths) June 16, 2013 at 9:41 am #

    Hi Kristin,

    Love your top and pattern – thanks so much for sharing and for the super tutorial. Will definitely be making one :)

  49. Jacinta June 26, 2013 at 8:35 pm #

    thank you for the pattern and tutorial! Just made one, and I love it. Can’t wait to sew a few more.

  50. Eileen September 19, 2013 at 6:36 pm #

    Thanks so much for this pattern! I adjusted it up to a size XL and made my first ever t-shirt with it, which turned out pretty well!

  51. Liz December 9, 2013 at 12:14 am #

    I’m very late to the Scoop Tee party, but oh so happy I finally arrived!
    Thanks for providing such a wonderful pattern. It was the perfect project to start me in knits. I blogged my top here:

  52. Bonnie March 26, 2014 at 12:54 pm #

    So pretty! Do you think this could be made in a woven, as well? I could add buttons…. how do you think the fit would be?

  53. Rosanna May 21, 2014 at 10:47 am #

    yaaay – my first successful make with knit fabric! So perfect, thank you for so generously sharing it for free too.

  54. Alicia August 18, 2014 at 6:00 am #

    I can’t get the pdf pattern….The link is broken… Is it possible to send it to me please ?
    Thank you very much

  55. lilyej August 30, 2014 at 6:53 am #

    Is greate!

  56. Christenna Carr February 4, 2015 at 7:32 pm #

    Working on my 4th top. Do just a little bit different on each one. Thanks for such a great pattern and one that can be customized.

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