Presto… It’s A Tunic!

The Love Notions Presto Tunic

The Presto Tunic is one Love Notions pattern that I don’t think gets enough love. It’s a pretty quick sew that can be sewn in a variety of woven fabrics for very different results.

The Details

The Presto is a tunic that is designed for woven fabrics. It has a loose fit with gentle shaping thanks to darts at the bust and optional back darts for a very flattering silhouette. The neckline can be finished with either a banded collar or bias binding. The tunic features an inset panel, which is perfect for color blocking! The hem is finished with side vents, which give you at little extra bit of room at the hip area (Yay, us curvy ladies love side vents!). This is considered an Intermediate sew, but totally doable for beginners with the excellent tutorial provided by Love Notions. This tutorial has a few video links to help along the way.

The tunic has four sleeve options: sleeveless, short, 3/4 and long. There is an optional sash included with the pattern.

Sizing

The Presto is available in sizes XS-XXXL. A full bust from piece is also included in this pattern.

I sewed up my typical size for all LN patterns, which is a Large(with FBA) graded out to an XL at the hip. Remember if using the Full Bust piece, this adds 2″ to the finished waist and hip measurements. The back darts are optional, which I left off my newest versions to give myself a bit more room(I’m still dealing with a bit of COVID fluffiness). I have always loved tunics- but have never been able to buy them RTW. To fit my bust, the shoulders are always way too big. This is why I love LN patterns with the FBA front piece included. It gives me a perfect fit every time!

I shortened the tunic by 2″ in length to account for my lack of height as I am only 5″ tall.

As mentioned above the back darts are optional. I did leave them off my 2 newest versions, and hopefully in a few months I will be able to go back and sew in the darts. So this is the perfect woven pattern to sew for myself right now! It’s loose around my middle now, and I can make it more fitted later on.

Fabrics

The Presto is designed for wovens such as linen, chambray, rayon, flannel, shirting, lawn and poplin. Remember that different fabrics can produce very different results. My Seersucker version has a much more tailored look since the fabric doesn’t have much drape. Using rayon challis or twill creates a tunic that is much more flowy and feminine. My seersucker version has a very classic look to it. Meanwhile, my rayon twill and challis versions have a much more feminine look to them.

A great way to see how the Presto looks in different fabrics is to do your research. Every time I am making a new to me pattern, I scour the internet to see as many sewn versions as I can find. Using the Love Notions Pattern Support group, simply type Presto Tunic in the Search function. You will see ALL the tunics that were posted by the group members! If you use Instagram- which I love for researching patterns, simply search #prestotunic.

Creating your Own Presto

Remember that you can make a dozen Presto tunics and they can all look very different. Crisp linen will give you a very classic beachy tunic. A chambray or seersucker will produce a clean crisp look. Rayon challis or twill will be softer and more flowy. The Presto is also a great pattern for color blocking. You can mix and match all the pieces like I did with my seersucker version or just simply use a contrasting fabric for the front insert.

Don’t be afraid to use trims on your Presto! Good old fashioned Rick Rack helped give me the perfect Preppy tunic that I always wanted. Cotton lace on my rayon challis patchwork version helped me create that BoHo vibe I was going for.

Construction Tips

The side vents are very easy to construct. LN has a video link in the tutorial to help with their construction. I have taken my construction technique to the next level and mitered the corners of my newest Prestos. I have explained the whole process over on the Love Notion Blog. You can read how to miter your corners HERE. This construction technique can be used on any side vent hem. It’s also great to use when making cloth napkins, etc. I love when the inside of my handmade garments are as pretty as the outsides. Mitered corners just look so pretty from the inside!

My favorite trick for marking darts on my fabric is to cut the dart out of the pattern piece(after you have cut out your fabric. I then find it much easier to mark he dart legs. Make sure to save the triangle dart piece and tape it back onto your pattern for the next time you sew your pattern. I posted a few photos below to help all you visual learners!

Sew MaryMac’s Tips For Sewing Wovens

  • Do not let fabric hang off the end of your cutting table. This “pulls” the fabric and in turn your cut pattern pieces may be distorted. This can make the difference in your collar fitting the neckline edge or not.
  • Cut as accurately as you possibly can. Take your time when cutting. Wovens aren’t as forgiving as knits- a small difference can make a big difference when attaching a collar.
  • When working with “shifty” fabric such as rayon challis, spray fabric with “Best Press” and iron.

Some Sew MaryMac Time Saving Tips

  • When you have a TNT pattern that requires interfacing, cut out 2 or 3 sets at the same time. It’s always nice when you go to sew the pattern the next time and your interfacing is all ready to go!
  • Always keep 3 bobbins wound of your most used colors. I always have 3 each of Navy, Black, White, Gray and Off-White.
  • When finished with a project, always rewind bobbins before unthreading your machine. This way you are ready for that color next time.

Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Mary Anne 🙂

Be sure to visit the Love Notions Blog to read my blog post “Don’t Cut Corners…Miter Them!” to see how to do mitered corners on your Presto tunic, or any other split hem pattern you have! Click here.

Remember to follow me over on Instagram to see all my latest makes! @sewmarymac


To receive 10% off the pattern price, use this coupon code. MARYMAC10. This coupon will even work along with the $5 Feature Friday price. Oh yeah, and it never expires!

You can purchase the Presto pattern HERE. This is my affiliate link. It costs you nothing to purchase from this link, it just helps fund my fabric addiction (and helps me sew and review more pattern). Don’t forget to use the coupon code above too!

Both rayon prints were purchased from Stylemaker Fabrics. This is one of my most favorite online fabric shops. They have a curated collection of beautiful fabrics. Many fabrics are available year round such as linen, sweater knits, wool coating, twill and rayons.

As always opinions are my own. I purchased this pattern long before I became a Love Notions Ambassador. Most fabrics were purchased by myself with the exception of the Robert Kaufman Seersucker. That was gifted to me last Spring in exchange for a blog post on the Raspberry Creek Fabrics Blog.

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