Thursday, December 24, 2015

Poncho with Panache

I've had a vision of a smart, classic, wool poncho running through my head for a couple of months now.  With some time off, some gift money in my pockets, and a real desire to start a new project, I figured it was time to make it happen!

After looking at the construction of a couple of ponchos I already have, I realized this was going to be a super simple project.

I selected a nice, lightweight wool blend in a traditional brown pattern.  Only one yard of fabric was needed. But since the fabric I chose had less than a yard remaining on the bolt, I went ahead and purchased the remaining remnant for a significantly reduced price.  
I picked up some chunky, woolly yarn as well, and a toggle closure embellishment.

Here are the basic directions:
Cut two rectangles 
15" - 19" wide
31" - 35" long.

With right sides together, sew the short end of rectangle 1 to the bottom side of the length of  rectangle 2.
Next, sew the short end of rectangle 2 to the bottom side of rectangle 1 as shown in the diagram above. 

Fold over the raw edge of the neckline 1/2" and sew in place to finish.


Because wool has little to no stretch, it is necessary to add darts for the shoulders.
Mark with pins where your shoulder darts should go.  

Sew simple darts. 

Or round the shoulder darts for a smoother fit.

Top stitch the seams if desired. 


To finish the hem, run a stabilizing stitch along the hem line about 5/8" away from the raw edge. 

Pull out several of the parallel threads on each hem to create a fringe.

Add decorative buttons or a toggle clasp for added interest. 


Here are the front and back of the finished garment.
The above poncho was made with rectangles measuring 15" x 31". It would best fit adult extra small to small. 

This second poncho was made using rectangles 19" x 35" and would fit adult medium.

I gifted the smaller poncho to my good friend's granddaughter and included a set of the directions.  I hoped she'd like the poncho enough she'd want to make one herself.  She's been wanting to learn to sew and this is a great beginner project.  

The larger size poncho fits me perfectly!  It turned out exactly as I hoped.  


I really enjoyed this super quick and easy project. So much so that I made another one today!
This time I wanted to make it more bohemian.  I made it a bit larger - the dimensions of the rectangular pieces were 21" x 35".  Note that this made the neck quite small.  I had to leave part of one side open so it would fit over my head! 
Colorful, organic buttons serve as embellishment and a simple hem was put in along the bottom.

With simple modifications in fabric choice, sizing, finishes and accessories, you can express your personal style be it 
Boho Chic, Sophisticated Classic, or Feminine and Flirty.

All photographs taken by Paulette Rodriguez.


  1. Love these Paulette! I remember wearing ponchos as a girl.

  2. I love these! And that is not an overstatement or misuse of the word love. I just bought a poncho yesterday, and it is not nearly as hipster and cool as these. You've got to start an online store of your creations!

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  4. Paulette, this will be the perfect" first project" for me! Love both fabrics but the second one is my favorite! Can't wait to try this out! Merry Chtistmas!

  5. What a wonderful sewing project and tutorial! You are such a wonderful teacher of many subjects. I look forward to your next project.


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