Before I start Handmade Baby posts, I have one final maternity post for you. A while back, Sarah from The Crazy Tailor suggested I should figure out how to hack the Cheyenne Tunic pattern to make it suitable for maternity wear. As is usual with a sewing challenge, my mind worked on the problem until I finally figured out a solution…for each view!
To keep myself motivated to get the project done, I challenged Emily of @enjoyful_makes on Instagram to a sew off because she’s a fellow fan of Hey June Handmade and also expecting a baby. We were each to take a Hey June Handmade pattern and hack it for maternity wear.
Let’s start with View A, the full button front. The trick was deciding where to add the ease to allow for a rounded belly.
Step 1: Cut apart the front pattern piece below the bottom of the bust. For me this was on the shorten/lengthen line. If I were to do it again, I could even go an inch or so above that line. Cut out the top half as normal, just adding seam allowance to the bottom of the piece. When you cut out the bottom half of the pattern piece, cut out 3 extra inches across the front and add the seam allowance to the top as well. I also added length to the bottom of the tunic, but this was probably not necessary.
Step 2: Make pleats to gather in the extra 3 inches. I made 3 pleats, each facing away from the center front, located in the center of each front piece. Alternately, you could make 1 box pleat. You just want your pleats/gathering to end up drawing in the extra 3 inches you added.
Step 3: Sew the front and bottom pieces together so you have a whole front piece. To make the Cheyenne Tunic last the entire pregnancy, sew these 2 pieces together WRONG sides together. This will make the inside of your shirt look as pretty at this seam as at the rest of the shirt. After you have the shirt completed, sew a ribbon or tie over the top of this seam covering up the exposed edges and dangling off the side seams. This will allow you to wear the shirt at all stages of pregnancy, included the smaller months as the ties can draw in the extra width as you grow.
I did not do this on my shirt because I am nearing the end of my pregnancy. So I sewed the top and bottom halves of the fronts together RIGHT sides together. I pressed the seam up and zigzagged the raw edges on the inside. Then I finished assembling the front pieces according to the pattern.
And there you have it…a maternity Cheyenne Tunic, View A. I often wear this one with one of my maternity Runway Skirts. I made the Cheyenne in black stretch sateen from JoAnn Fabrics. I love this fabric for the Cheyenne Tunic very much, and will probably make myself another non maternity version in the fall!
Now for View B…which is super, super simple. This is the maternity Cheyenne tunic hack I actually figured out first.
Step 1: Cut out the front piece as shown. The center front will be 3 inches away from the fold. Cut down the front down to the “cut here for placket” marking. At that point, pivot and cut out to the fold of the fabric. Again I added length to the tunic length which was not necessary. But I’m very tall, so it ended up okay.
Step 2: Sew 2 gathering stitches just below the bottom of the placket.
Step 3: Gather this very tightly. You probably won’t be able to get it exactly back to the original shape, but the bottom point of the placket will cover up the gaping part.
Easy-peasy, and you have a View B maternity-ized Cheyenne Shirt! The fabric from this one came from Hancock Fabrics going out of business sale and indigo Robert Kaufman chambray union fabric leftover from this skirt.
This tutorial can probably be used with any button up shirt pattern, but I definitely recommend the Cheyenne Tunic pattern from Hey June Handmade. All the seams are beautifully finished on the inside and it’s such a lovely, professional shirt!
Affiliate links are used in this post, but only to products which I’ve personally used and loved! If you click on them you too will find something you love…and I might make a few pennies!