JCrew's Grand Ruffle tank knock-off! Tutorial

JCrew's lovely tees and tanks are so cute and so easy to copy.  For my first one this season I copied the Grand Ruffle tank.  Here's the original:
Theirs comes in lots of pretty colors, and I used this long-sleeved turquoise tee to transform.  It was on special for $5 at Target, but it never fit right, so I wasn't planning to miss it.
So here's the tutorial!
  • Take your shirt, artfully cut off the sleeves.  JCrew's has raw-ish rolled edges, too, so you don't have to worry about hemming if you cut off right at the seam.
  •  Cut the sleeve open down the long seam and cut the serging off.
  • Even out the sleeve pieces.  I cut mine to different widths, because the bottom ruffle is about an inch wider than the top ruffle.
  • You'll notice I didn't square off the sleeve top, and I did this because I was worried about the length of the ruffle pieces.  Ideally, they would be about 1.5 times the length of the tee from neck to hem, but I think this tee was a little too long or the neck too high or something since mine are barely long enough.  Hope yours works out better.  Here's my comparison.
  • Not quite long enough, but I tried to make it work.  Now, mark the center of your ruffles and do a long seam down it, big stitch and tight tension.
  • Position the widest ruffle on the tee, matching its center to the center front at the top and bottom.  Pin it down.
  • Sew along the center seam, just right on top of your gathering stitches.
  • Repeat these last two steps, centering the top ruffle.  Now you have something that looks almost like the JCrew version, and you could stop here, but I chose to do some hand sewing to finish.  I sewed down the tops of the ruffles at the neck to keep them in place and keep them from flopping down.
  • I also tacked down the ruffle in places to keep it fanned out rather than drooping down.  Depending on the weight and stiffness of your tee, you may not need to do this.
  • That's it!
This tank was super fun to make.  Maybe I will do another one if I wear this one a lot!  I should point out that JCrew uses tulle or net for the bottom ruffle, but I didn't have any of this in my color.  So you could try that, or using any other similar fabric in the same color.

15 comments

  1. This turned out really cute. I think I'm going to try it on a girl's dress. Thanks for the inspiration! Oh, and it looks like you have something really cute on your bottom half too. I heart polka dots :)

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  2. You did a great job knocking that T off. Congratulations!

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  3. Anonymous2/15/2010

    quite interesting read. I would love to follow you on twitter.

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  4. I really like the way this one turned out! I might just give it a go when my machine gets back from being fixed...

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  5. Great job, that's so cute! I can't wait to try!

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  6. You are right..j crew is just begging you to copy their clothes so that you can teach us! You did a great job! Looking forward to more of your fabulous ideas! Thank you!

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  7. too cute! you did a great job!!

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  8. Oh man! I love this!
    I think one of the most rewarding things about sewing is that you can mimic anything from an expensive shop. Good job! And I am definitely doing this project!

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  9. love this! I am off to find something to cut up- haha

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  10. Adorable! What a great idea. Thanks for linking to We Did It! Wednesday at Sew Much Ado!

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  11. I love the ruffles on the shirt! and on the neckline too. Can't wait to try it out on something in my recycling stack...

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  12. This is so awesome! I did it. I made mine short sleeves. That meant I had to sew strips from the sleeves together to make the ruffles long enough, but I don't think it's very noticable. Also, my ruffle is droopy, and I like that!

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  13. This is so cute! I have so many long sleeves shirts like this that are boring and it's great to turn them into a fun sleeveless shirt....thanks so much for sharing!

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  14. Wow! I just did this myself based on your awesome tutorial! It turned out so lovely ♥ ♥ ♥
    This was an awesome way to transform an old longsleeved shirt -- especially since I'm broke!!!
    I love your project instructions! Thank you.

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