How to Make an Adorable Tie Front Top With Puffy Sleeves

Steph time
by Steph time
8 Materials
2 Hours

Today, I invite you to follow along with me as I sew the Elliot Tie-Front Top by Cool Stitches. I’m very excited to be using vintage fabric from my grandmother’s stash for this project. Keep reading if you’d like to see the process of creating this DIY tie front top.

Tools and materials:

  • Pattern
  • Cotton fabric
  • Elastic band
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Loop turner (optional)
  • Sewing machine
  • Serger
Tie front crop top


Cut out all the pattern pieces from your fabric.

DIY tie front top

Mark, pin, and sew

Mark the darts on the front bodice pieces, pin them, and sew them down.

Sew a tie front top


Serge the raw edges of the bodice.

How to sew a tie front top

Pin and sew

Pin and sew the shoulder seams.

Make a tie front top


Sew a basting stitch along the top edges of the sleeves, and then gather the fabric so the sleeves will be nice and puffy. 

How to make a tie front top

Pin and sew

Pin the sleeves to the bodice, and sew them in place. Once the sleeves were sewn on, I removed the basting stitches.

Easy tie front top


Serge the seam allowances around the sleeves. 

tie front top tutorial

Pin, sew, and serge

Pin the seams along the sides and under the arms, and sew them down. Then serge the seam allowances.

Serge, iron, and sew

Serge the raw edge along the front opening, around the back of the neck, and down the other side of the opening. Then fold down the edge, iron it flat, and sew it down.

Try on, pin, and sew

Try on the shirt, and decide where you want the tie channels to be placed. Then pin the channels in place on the inside of the shirt. Fold in the raw edges at the ends of the channels before pinning. 

I accidentally pinned them to the outside of the shirt and considered leaving them there, but I cherish this vintage fabric so much, I wanted the shirt to come out as perfectly as possible. 

Once the channels are in place, sew them down. 

Prepare the ties

Next, sew the edges of the ties, right sides together. Then turn the ties right side out. I used a loop turner to turn the ties right side out, but you can also use a safety pin or long stick, like a knitting needle.

Once the fabric is right side out, finish the edges of the ties by tucking in the raw edges and sewing the ends closed.

Serge and hem

Serge the bottom edge of the shirt, and then fold the edge inward and sew it down.

Insert the ties

Feed the ties through the tie channels. Again, I used a loop turner to do this, but you can also use a safety pin attached to one end of the tie to guide it through the channel and out the other side. 

Finish the sleeves

Serge the raw edges of the sleeves. Then make a fold at the end of each sleeve wide enough to run an elastic through. Iron the fold and then sew it down, leaving a gap in the stitching through which you can insert the elastic.

Insert the elastic

Measure how much elastic you need to go around your arm so the elastic is snug, but not too tight, and cut two pieces of that length. Then feed each elastic into the gap in the stitching and through the channels at the ends of the sleeves. Sew the ends of the elastic together, and close up the gap in the stitching. 

And here’s the big reveal!

I had a great time making this top. I really hope you guys go and check out the pattern at Cool Stitches and make a tie-front top for yourself. Let me know if you want to see more tutorials like this one.  


Suggested materials:
  • Pattern   (
  • Cotton fbric
  • Elastic band
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Join the conversation
2 of 3 comments
  • Debra Debra on May 09, 2022

    Adorable top! I saw your trouser tutorial and liked it. Please make a skirt tutorial next!

  • Lalee Lalee on May 09, 2022

    Your very professional…I love the feminine top…I wish I had patience to sew from scratch like you..keep enjoying your abilities..