How to sew: The Bodice block

When you look at fashion magazines, you will see fantastic tops and gowns you will love to own. Or sew.

That’s why today’s lesson is so important. Because it is the foundation of those glamorous styles you see.

The BODICE Block shows you the techniques involved in sewing a top or fitted blouse.

In this lesson, you will learn important things like how to cut the fabric for a blouse, How to create darts, the difference between a dart on the front and a dart at the back.

Now today’s lesson is going to be the bedrock of future sew alongs like how to sew a fitted pencil gown or how to sew a pop-culture (fitted) jacket.

In today’s lesson, I will be teaching you how to sew a BODICE block. This is not an actual top but you can use the techniques in this class to know how to sew an actual top/blouse. In fact, if yo follow my instructions to the letter, then sew a zip and hem your armhole and hemline, you will have a fine fitted top you can wear and show off your sewing skills to your friends.

What you will need: 

Like all lessons before this one, you will need tools to get the work done.

  • Needle
  • thread
  • scissors
  • rulers
  • chalk
  • fabric
  • sewing machine (highly recommended)

Amount of fabric you will need: 

As usual, the amount of fabric you will need will depend on who you are sewing for. I made this BODICE block all the way to the hips. So you will need to do the following calculations:

width = HIP measurement + 14 inches. 

lenght = Shoulder to hip measurement. 

So let’s say your hip is 44 inches. Then the width of material you will get is 44 + 14 inches = 58 inches.

That’s more than one and half yards. This is the amount you tell a fabric seller when he asks, “Madam, how many yards will I cut?”

Now for the length. You already know that most material are 45 inches long, or 55 inches long or 58 inches long or 60 inches long. I have even used lycra that is 90 inches long. It is along this lenght of the fabric that you will cut your length (Shoulder to hip) from.

I hope you understand this. If you have any questions at all, please let me know in the comments below or in the whatsapp group.

Measurements you need to make before you start making a blouse:

Remember our measurements video? Now is a good time to go back to it, in case you have forgotten how to measure yourself


  • Back
  • Across Front
  • Across Back
  • Bust
  • Underbust
  • Waist
  • Hip


  • Shoulder to Across Front
  • Shoulder to Across Back
  • Shoulder to Bust
  • Shoulder to Underbust
  • Shoulder to Waist
  • Shoulder to Hip

Now you are ready to get started. Watch the videos below to know what to do:



In our next class, we will learn how to sew this simple, yet elegant batwing top below:

batwing top2