Today, I thought I’d share a tutorial for quilted shoulders on the Claudia tank. I showed you my first version of the Just Patterns Claudia tank in this post and I thought it would be fun to try something different for the shoulders which still had the same style vibe while staying true to the design.
This on-trend tank pattern is designed for that slightly oversized shoulder look with shoulder pads, but actually, my shoulders are quite square anyway, so I thought I’d try something with a bit less bulk, that’s when this idea popped into my head. It’s quite straightforward to do and enjoyable as well.
I’ll walk you through the steps in a minute, so you can have a go yourself, but first a quick mention of the fabric…it’s an organic cotton stretch jersey from Lamazi Fabrics. It was my first purchase from them and I’m very pleased with the quality. They seem to have a lovely selection of fabrics.
Ok, let’s get on with the tutorial, shall we?
Tutorial: Quilted Shoulders On The Claudia Tank
First, you need to draw a diagonal line on the back and front pattern pieces for the finished shape. I’ve drawn mine starting at 1”(2.5cm) down from the inner neckline finishing about 4”(10cm) down from the outer edge of the shoulder.
Trace off one side drawing a line following the shoulder seam. Turn this piece around, line up the shoulder seam on the other pattern piece and trace off the rest. This is what your finished pattern looks like, note that I added about 1/4″(3mm) seam allowance to each diagonal edge:
Next, find some thin padding. I used bra foam, but you could use a thin polyester quilting padding(batting). It needs to be washable. Cut two pieces.
Cut one layer of main fabric the same size as the padding, then overlock/serge the two long edges of fabric and padding together and be sure to mark the shoulder seam position afterwards.
Sew and overlock the shoulder seams of your tank and then place the padded pieces underneath making sure to line up the shoulder seam and markings.
Use the edge of the pattern piece as a guide for basting and then stitching the two main diagonal lines to hold the padding in place, before doing the quilting.
With a walking foot and quilt guide set at ( 1″)2.5cm stitch the quilting lines. When you’ve done the first lot going in one direction, use a set square to get a right angle to line up the first row of lines for stitching in the other direction. Sew all the thread ends in once you’ve finished.
Now you can make up the rest of the tank top as per instructions…
After I’d sewn on the facings and understitched them, I found it necessary to do some backstitching by hand close to the armhole edge on the inside to hold everything in place.
I suppose I could have initially trimmed the padding from the armhole seam allowance before I did the quilting but I rather like the firmer, slightly thicker edge anyway.
And that’s it. I hope you like this pattern hack. Let me know what you think. I’m sure you could even try this out on other top styles and it’s not too tricky to do.
Oh, and PS…this top is the perfect shade of green to match my Ezra linen skirt. I couldn’t believe how perfect they look together!
And PPS…I almost forgot to mention that I changed the neckline from round to square, but this is such an easy change, just a matter of getting a ruler and drawing the shape prior to cutting. I overlocked the binding of cross-grain folded fabric first and finished it off with a row of topstitching on the right side. I then made the corner shapes neat on the binding by hand stitching little mitres. Here are a couple of close-ups.
See you soon, thanks for stopping by and don’t forget to leave a comment, I love to chat x
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I absolutely love this idea! I just found your blog, starting with the post in which you discovered your Dramatic Classic kibbe type. I cannot imagine a more perfect top for a DC! I am so inspired to adapt this concept for my own wardrobe.
Thank you, Leigh Ann! I love how this top turned out…so glad you like it.
Ooh that is a very very clever idea. I’ve made myself two shoulderpad tanks already but now you’ve got me thinking about a third…
Thanks, Lia! So glad you love this idea and it’s fun to know you might try it too.
Lovely! Could you please explain how to do those inside corners on your neck ribbing? Thank you!
Thank you, Lisa! Yes, of course. If you check out the last couple of paragraphs and photos you’ll see that I updated my post 🙂
Thanks for this design option and tutorial: very attractive, and useful for many women who can benefit from a bit of shoulder emphasis to balance hips! I think it goes very nicely with your neckline change to square, as well.
Did you study design @ University?
I’m sure your new top and Ezra skirt look so fresh and cool together in that lovely green!
So please you like it, Joan. It adds structure without too much bulk.
No, I didn’t study design at University, though I did a one-year Foundation course in Art shortly after finishing High School. I also did a diploma in pattern cutting/design where I learned the basics of drafting slopers and learned a lot about changing block patterns (cut, slash spread etc). As for the ideas, I’m always browsing online for inspiration and sometimes they just spring to mind.
Great hack! Thanks!
Thank you, so glad you like it! xx