Easy Elegance with a Clever Pullover

The SHAWL TEE from Petite Plus Patterns is a fast, easy pattern to cut and sew. There are no darts, no collars, no buttons or zips and no sleeves to fit; yet this is an elegant top that you can wear casually or for a special occasion.

Pattern #114, Shawl Tee features a scoop neckline, sleeveless stretch tank with an attached sheer overlay.

The Shawl Tee is a hip-length, two-layered, fit & flow pullover top.
This top is made up of a sleeveless tank that’s cool and comfortable with an attached shawl that flows loosely over upper arms, tummy and back.

How to make Petite Plus Patterns SHAWL TEE #114

The two pieces in this top – a sleeveless tank in stretch fabric and a poncho-style shawl in light-weight sheer fabric are each sewn separately, then joined together along the neckline.

A few tips as you follow the instructions in the guide sheet:

Serging is optional based on the needs of your fabric. Most stretch woven fabrics don’t fray, so I don’t serge these seams. Chiffon, on the other hand is likely to fray, so clean-finish these seams with serging, zigzag or seam tape.

Sleeveless Tank

Choose light to medium-weight, knit or stretch-woven fabric with a *smooth hand and at least 10% stretch. Fabrics such as ITY, ponté, jersey and interlock are perfect for the tank.

*Avoid having your overlay and tank “sticking” by using a smooth and silky stretch-fabric for the tank.

To avoid distortion of neckline, pin the shoulder seams immediately after cutting the tank and before moving it from your table.
If your fabric is quite stretchy, the addition of stay tape to the shoulder seams will prevent sagging.
Cut 2 pieces of twill tape or clear bathing suit elastic the length of the shoulder seam line plus, for ease in handling an extra 2.5 cm (1 in).

This stretch fabric is quite stable, so I didn’t need to use stay tape on the shoulders.

Machine stitch the shoulder seams. Serge to finish raw edges if desired, then press.

Armhole Trim

The armhole trim is cut either on bias or with the greatest stretch running lengthwise. The trim shown is 2 cm (3/4 in) wide. The guide sheet directs you to serge along one edge but I omitted this step because the fabric is not one that frays.

To begin, place the right side of trim to the right side of garment. Use the width of your machine foot as a guide for a narrow seam allowance. Sew with the trim on top and the garment next to the machine. Stretch the trim a tiny bit as you sew but do not stretch the garment.

Press the trim & seam allowance toward the armhole opening.

Turn the armhole trim into its finished position, rolling the fabric firmly and evenly over the raw edge of the seam allowance to the inside of the tank.

From the right side of the tank, stitch the armhole trim. Use a narrow seam and stitch closely to the original seam line. Take your time; use your fingers to feel that the trim is sitting smoothly as you proceed.

The armhole trim is in place. You can trim the inside edge if you feel there’s excess fabric.

First Side Seam

With the armhole trim in place, sew back to front along just ONE of the side seams. Pay close attention to matching the armhole trim.
You can serge the raw edges together or, if you have a fabric that doesn’t fray, just press the side seam open.
Machine tack the armhole trim to keep this area nice and flat. Just a few stitches back & forth is all that’s needed. The second side seam will be sewn when hem prep is complete.

Hem Prep – Do this now for a fast hem later.

Do you hate the tedium of “measure & pin, measure & pin”? This hem-prep will speed up your hemming technique.

Open the tank and lay face down on a flat surface.

Use a quilting ruler and chalk to mark a guide line 5 cm (2 in) from the raw edge (twice the height of the hem allowance).
The plan is to fold the raw edge up to the white line and press a crease.
Press a crease as you fold the raw edge of the hem up to the chalk line. No pins just yet, but the crease is there to guide you later.

Second Side Seam

With the hem prepped, return to the second side seam. Pin front to back matching raw edges and notches.
Match up the armhole trim and sew front to back, pulling pins before you sew over them.

Press the side seam flat then open.

Tank Hem

With both side seams sewn and pressed, return to the hem. It has a crease in place and is fast to turn up and pin in place.
Stitch hem in place, pulling pins as you sew, then press lightly. For stretchy garments, I like the finish a twin needle gives to hems.
The tank is complete and can be set aside while the shawl is constructed.
To avoid stretching or distorting the neckline, don’t hang the tank; fold lightly and set aside on a flat surface.

Shawl Overlay


Assembling the Shawl

Stitch front to back along shoulder seams of shawl.

Serge to clean finish the shoulder seams, then press.

Shawl Hemline

A rolled edge hem is perfect for this light-weight Shawl and it’s easy to do, even with my old serger. I used three threads and my serger’s rolled edge foot. The machine manual suggests a range of stitch length & stitch widths as well as tension settings. I experimented on scrap chiffon before working on the actual garment. You want a rolled edge that sits flat – not puckered or stretched out.

For a rolled edge hem, consult your machine manual for the correct settings.
A simple rolled edge finishes the shawl hem neatly. (A very nice rolled hem can also be achieved with a straight sew machine and rolled hem attachment.)
Press the rolled edge hem with an up & down motion (no sliding) to avoid ripples.
Don’t hang the shawl between steps; instead fold lightly and leave on a flat surface.

Attaching Tank & Shawl

Turn the Tank right side out. Place the Shawl inside the Tank with the RIGHT side of shawl against the WRONG side of Tank.

Pin the two necklines together, matching shoulder seams and notches.
At the sewing machine, place Tank on bottom and Shawl on top. Stitch around neckline. Remove pins as you sew.
The pattern’s seam allowances are 1 cm (3/8 in) so there’s no need to trim or clip after stitching.
Shawl and Tank sewn together at neckline.
Return garment to serger and clean finish the raw neckline edge.

Under Stitching

Under-stitching will ensure that your neckline sits smoothly and doesn’t roll out in a funny way.

Fold the seam allowance of the neckline towards the tank. Return the top to your sewing machine for edge stitching around the neckline.
Using a scant 3mm (1/8 in) from original neckline seam, under-stitch the seam allowances to the tank neckline.
When you turn the top right side out, you’ll see stitching just slightly to the inside of the tank neckline. This narrow little seam will keep the neckline neatly in place.
With the neckline in its finished position, press the stitching along the edge.
This neckline will sit nicely and not “roll out”.


Your Shawl Tee is almost done. A couple little anchors will prevent the light-weight Shawl from shifting and “blowing up” in the breeze.

Pin top of Tank and Shawl shoulders together at the seam line.
You want the anchor to sit at the end of the shoulder.
Position the sewing machine needle in the ditch of the shoulder seam.
Sew a few stitches back & forth to form an anchor. Trim threads closely. Repeat on the other shoulder.
This little anchor will secure the shawl in place.


Give your Shawl Tee a final light pressing. The garment can now be placed on a hanger.

To purchase and download the Shawl Tee pattern, go to https://petitepluspatterns.com/shop/tops/114-pdf-shawl-tee-downloadable-pattern/

The Shawl Tee is a downloadable pattern. Print the pattern on letter or A4 sized paper. Also included in the file is a Copy Shop version for wide format printers. Copy Shop version requires roll paper that is 36 inches wide.

Pattern price is US $15. Canadians may purchase at par by emailing info@petitepluspatterns.com