Tina Givens Luella Tunic look-alike

13 Jun

This is the second Tina Givens look-alike I’ve tried to create. The first one I made I didn’t wear. It just didn’t do it for me for some reason, so I chopped it up into a pair of bloomer-style shorts. The problem was the style – just one of those things you try out and decide it isn’t for you.

Then I saw this post found through Sewingpatternreview.com, and I decided it was well worth giving the Tina Givens look-alike thang a second go, especially as the weather was awful. In Darwin ‘awful’ weather means hot and humid and sticky and disgusting. Loose swingy flowing natural-fibre clothes are by far the best clothes for that weather.

Getting the sort-of-right look in the first dress was so hard I seriously considered just buying the actual Tina Givens Luella Tunic pattern. As well, I’d also recently concluded this dress just wasn’t as I’d really envisioned it, and sent it to the op shop, so I wasn’t feeling that confident with the whole trying to make look-alikes thang. Three points, however, decided me against buying a proper Tina Givens pattern.

  1. I’d made the free Tina Givens Plinka Pants pattern for a friend and the draft was so simple and er, essentially shapeless I didn’t want to spend money on a pattern like that.
  2. I read this post on Curvy Sewing Collective where the reviewer found the actual pattern so big and shapeless she essentially redrafted the fit using a good-fitting pattern of her own, though not the style, to make it fall more flatteringly. This thread on Artisan Square wasn’t exactly inspiring of spending that much $$$ on any of the patterns either.
  3. I’m stubborn and rather enjoy the challenge of trying to copy a picture from the internet, even if I don’t always succeed 😛

So I took my favourite shift dress that I know fits well, adjusts easily and usually still looks good after adjustments. I applied it and my copying skills to some gorgeous peacock craft fabric from Spotlight And got cutting and sewing. Here is the result.

I cut it to fit within the width and length of the fabric I had chosen to use (2.2m of 112 wide fabric) so I essentially got the pattern out of 2.2m. It looks like the Tina Givens pattern takes a lot more fabric, so hey, I’m happy with mine. I can see there’s a bit of a ‘corner’ in the side seams in the original. I chose to not do that, going with a more streamlined side seam.

The overall result is a tunic top I wear so much that the moment it’s been laundered I’m wearing it again.  It’s cool, satisfyingly swishy and the fabric is just gorgeous irl. The piccies of the top itself don’t do justice to it so here is a picture of the fabric itself.

The neckline is high which helps keep the sun off my crazily fair skin, but as I’ve found with this shift pattern, the neckline isn’t too hot. It’s the perfect compromise between sun-sensible and coolness. Probably one reason why this is my go-to TNT shift dress pattern. I also made a little cut-on cap sleeve to keep the sun off my shoulders, rather than longer, hotter sleeves as in the Tina Givens pattern. The coral-red in the fabric just so happens to perfectly match the coral butterfly shorts I’m wearing with it in these photos. It looks lovely with the other coloured shorts and 3/4 trousers in my wardrobe too.

I’ve been in love with floofy dresses for a long time now, especially in the worst time of year weatherwise. Now I’m in love with floofy tops too! Especially when worn with shorts, they are the perfect antidote to stifling mugginess. So … I’ve cut up another length of fabric for another floofy top, this time the floofy coming from released pintucks. It didn’t work out as I envisioned so it’ll be a while before I have redone the top and write about it here. Don’t worry though! I’m having a lot of fun 😀

I suspect that even though I am not inspired to buy any of Tina Given’s patterns I’ll still dream over them on her site. I mean hey, I can totally see myself in this dress…

Or this…


7 Responses to “Tina Givens Luella Tunic look-alike”

  1. raquel from jc June 13, 2016 at 10:35 pm #

    Beautiful: so girly, flowy and the fabric is espectacular! I’ve been seen this Tina Givens patterns a lot lately and I’m intrigued. I’m petite, so I’m not really convinced. What type of fabric did you use? Cotton?


    • Tropical Threads June 13, 2016 at 10:47 pm #

      I’m petite too, and I think a lot of the details would overwhelm me easily – so that’s part of why I tried to get the overall look but using my own pattern to create it.
      I used a standard craft cotton 🙂


      • raquel from jc June 13, 2016 at 10:52 pm #

        Standard craft cotton! Oh Lord! It looks like silk or liberty, I’m impressed! Just came from TG website and I’m still not convinced heheheh


      • Tropical Threads June 13, 2016 at 11:04 pm #

        Yep just standard craft cotton! Most of what I sew is just standard craft cotton. It’s actually a perfect weight for the tropics – not heavy, but not so light I get sunburnt through it like I do voile. So I’m pretty used to making the most of craft cottons 😀

        Yeah I know what you mean. I like the style but I do think it requires a lot of ‘interpretation’ perhaps is the best way of putting it, to make them work if you’re not tall and statuesque.


  2. Josie Brady June 16, 2016 at 2:14 pm #

    I couldn’t work out how to reply on the page. I think the style would be hard to wear unless you were tall and thin, but I love the fabric you used.


    • Tropical Threads June 16, 2016 at 2:30 pm #

      Looks like it came up ok on the post.
      Anyway I think Tina Givens style does need tallness to not overwhelm the person. Another reason why I thought I might be better using a pattern that I know works on me and adjusting that. I think it did work better that way.
      Besides it sounds like TG pattern shoulders are huge and I can’t STAND having clothes slide off my shoulders! Much better to use a pattern that I know doesn’t do that 😛



  1. That time of year… | Tropical Threads - October 28, 2019

    […] started making and wearing floofy dresses for the build up a few years ago, and it makes a big difference to how I cope with this kind of weather. Floofy is […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: