Hello! I'm Suzannah, a serious DIYer and mom of two little ones. Follow along with my DIY fixer upper house renovations, sewing and crafty projects, real food recipes, and de-stressing goals.
I believe you can love your home just the way it is, AND have the power to design and make big changes to make it better.
I'm also the author of DIY Wardrobe Makeovers!

Anthropologie's Patchwork V-neck tutorial

Oh, Anthropologie.  How you inspire us and frustrate us.  It seems like every time I go onto Anthro's site, I see new tops, tees, and dresses that I know I could copy for a fraction of the $78+ price tag.  Some of them I don't even like that much, but I feel the challenge and inspiration to copy them because I can.  Do you ever feel that way?
Today I'll share a tutorial with you for this lovely tee:
The Patchwork V-neck, a simple and versatile cotton tee with a patchwork of lovely neutrals, yellows, and prints.  We can totally make this!
  • Start with your tee (preferably a ring-spun v-neck).  I got this one at the Goodwill outlet when I was collecting yellow things--it's a Kohl's brand.  I think I wore it to paint in and it has a smudge of black high-gloss paint on the front!  I wish I had had a paler one like the Anthropologie v-neck, in a neutral color or something, but this will have to do.
  • Now pull out all your pretty scraps and trims that you think capture the look of the Anthro copy.  I pulled out all the yellowy ones and some heavy cotton lace.
  • Lay out the pieces as you'd like them to be.  I like to do this with my computer right behind my work so I can glance up a lot and look at what I'm copying!
  • Use spray adhesive to keep all the fabric pieces in place.  If you don't have any spray adhesive, you could use pins, but this would be a serious pain in the neck.  I laid out the big piece that comes all the way up the right side first and cut away at the neck.
 Then add everything else with more adhesive...
  • Press the pieces down carefully--watch out for melting and unsticking the spray adhesive.
  • Sew down the pieces.  I used a zig zag stitch for most of the pieces, but a straight stitch on the finished edges of the hankie I used and on the very high quality, tightly woven shirt pieces (the gingham).
  • Back to the computer, look at the inspiration and copy the embroidery pattern onto the shirt with a pencil or fabric marker.  I really wish I had a fabric marker in times like these...
 Can you just barely see the pencil marks I made?
  • Using a thick thread, sew over your lines either by machine or by hand.  I used a heavy Coats and Clark cotton thread in off-white, which was not super easy to sew with, but which left very clearly visible stitches like the original has.
  • This part is optional, and not necessary if you're new to sewing or unsure of your machine.  I used a buttonhole stitch to make little round-ish spots on the branch--the Anthro version has some fancier detail but this is my simplified version.  Some of them are just a row of buttonhole stitch, some are buttonhole, double back, more buttonhole next to the first.
  • Next, clean up all the threads--trim lots of threads off the tree thing.
  • That's it!  Maybe give it an extra press, but it should be done!
 There are so many pretty Anthropologie things to copy this spring... I will be doing more, so stay tuned!


  1. That is cool. I didn't know you could use spray adhesive on a shirt (and not ruin it). Good to know. LInk this up at whatever goes Wednesday at my site tomorrow!

  2. Cute! There are some great stabilizers out there that you can use on the inside of the shirt that might help as well. I'd recommend using some Jenny Haskings Sheer Magic or a lightweight Cotton Stable that washes out. Thanks for sharing!!

  3. I made a toddler ruffle shirt thanks to your inspiration. When I get a picture of her in it, I will send it your way.

  4. I just realized that I use the same scissors as you! From my days as working as a JoAnn Fabrics cutting assistant.

    Nice job on the shirt!

  5. I think yours is even prettier than the Anthro one. Love It! Thanks for the inspiration.

  6. I thought the exact same thing when I saw this top - I'm so glad you did this!

  7. this is AWESOME! really great job.

  8. I like yours better too.
    I would only suggest to put something on the back too.

  9. It's beautiful! Thanks for the tutorial!

  10. This turned out so great! You are a genius! Thanks for the great tutorial!



  11. gorgeous! Seriously...anthropologie ain't got nothin' on your skills.

  12. Ohh...I love anthropologie too. You did such a wonderful job on the shirt!

  13. I love this and am featuring it on my sidebar all day today (Monday). Thanks for the great tutorial!

  14. Love this...I think I might try this on a jersey skirt I am making. Thanks for the inspiration.


  15. Anonymous1/03/2012

    I like yours more. Very nice!

  16. You could soak the T in bleach and H2O to make it lighter. I always use washable markers to make my patterns for embroidery. The marker rinses out nicely.



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