Hi lovely reader <3
Here’s today’s guest: Lisa @ Cucicucicoo.com: do you ever feel that you know someone also if you’ve never seen him/her? This is what happened when I virtually met her: twin souls <3
You can read this post in italian, going to her blog!
Today she’s sharing one of her great step-by-step tutorials about how-to
Girl-ify a Men’s T-shirt
Hi, everyone! Lisa here from Cucicucicoo! I’m so happy to be a guest of Irene’s here on Serger Pepper! Irene and I both are huge fans of using materials that we already have, so today I’d like to share a really useful refashioning tutorial with you.
Have you ever seen a really cool men’s t-shirt that you’d love to wear yourself…
…except you look like a sack of potatoes in it?
I scored these awesome music-themed graphic t-shirts from my husband’s bureau (I convinced him that he never wore them so he should give them to me!), but I can’t stand wearing baggy t-shirts, especially when they bunch up under my armpits. Ugh! So, let’s do some quick surgery to girlify a men’s t-shirt!
Turn your men’s t-shirt inside out and fold it in half the long way. Make sure that the inner layer of fabric reaches all the way to the fold and carefully line up the collar, shoulders and sides. Then fold a t-shirt that fits you well the same way and line it up along the fold and shoulders.
Trace around the bodice of the t-shirt with tailor’s chalk. Lift up the sleeves to trace along the seam that connects them to the bodice. Then line up the top fold and hem of the sleeves of both shirts and trace around them in the same way.
Cut 1 cm outside of the traced lines except at the very bottom of the shirt. You’ll probably want to re-hem it, so cut about 4 cm outside of that line. Because of the much smaller sleeve size, the armpit ended up going over the sleeve seam, but don’t worry about it if it’s just a little bit.
Note that not all t-shirts have the same stretch, so some might seem smaller, but can actually fit around you better than another that looks bigger but has less stretch. It’s therefore always wise to err on the large side when cutting out your pieces. You can always make them smaller, but it would be a little complicated to make them bigger!
Open up and lay out the original shirt body piece and position one of the new cut sleeves on top of it, right sides facing. Take care to line up the center of the sleeve and the center of the armscye (where the sleeve attaches to the bodice).
Start pinning the two edges together, working from the center towards one side.
Then continue pinning from the center towards the other side. The two layers will not lay together flat, so you’ll have to maneuver them with your hands to fit them together. The ends of the sleeves should reach to the end of the armpit on the bodice. If you find that one end doesn’t reach over all the way and the other end goes too far, remove the pins and move the whole sleeve over a little bit and repin. Repeat with the other sleeve.
Sew along the pinned edges of both sleeves with a 1 cm seam allowance. I preferred using a serger, but you could also use a triple straight stitch (a stitch I learned about thanks to Irene!)
Remember how I had to cut into the armscye seam? This is what it looks like after the sleeve is reattached. There’s a bit of confusion of seams, but it really doesn’t bother me because you can’t really even notice the extra seam under your arm.
Now place your t-shirt flat with right sides facing. Line up the side edges and pin them together.
As you are reusing the original sleeve hems, you want to be really careful to line them up perfectly, then line up the armpit seams and then work your way down. The bottom doesn’t have to line up perfectly because that needs to be finished off afterwards. (By the way, that white stuff is chalk, not deodorant!)
Sew from the sleeve hem all the way down to the bottom with a serger or triple straight stitch. Then do the same on the other side. Turn the shirt right way out and try it on. If it’s too wide, take in the side seams a little bit.
Now let’s finish off the bottom. T-shirt jersey doesn’t fray, so you could always just trim the bottom so that it’s even and be done with it. Or you could just pass the bottom through the serger and leave it as is. Or you can get iron the edge inwards and sew it in place with a triple straight stitch or zig zag or with a coverlock machine, if you’re lucky enough to have one! I chose to serge the bottom, fold it up and stitch in place with a double needle. I like this effect because it looks pretty similar to a coverlock seam. (I finally, in this step, realized that it would make more sense to take my photos with a lighter colored shirt, not a black one. Better late than never!)
Sooo much better now! The shirts have a much more feminine feel to them now and are so much more comfortable without all that excess fabric. That cassette tape is taking on some pretty bizarre curves, but my husband said that he likes it that way! Ha!
And check out my awesome pits! The shirts’ armpits are much slimmer now and you can only notice the extra seam from when cutting out the pieces if I walk around with my arms in the air and pointing it out. I’m certainly not going to lose any sleep over it! I love my new t-shirts and this is such an easy refashion!
Do you have some men’s t-shirts to girlify? I’d love to see how you fix them up! Post any pictures on the Cucicucicoo Creations Flickr group and stop by my website for lots of great refashioning and sewing tutorials! Or come join me on Facebook! See you soon! 🙂 Lisa
… thanks for being here, Lisa<3
Just a quick note to tell you that, if you need a PDF pattern to quickly satisfy your sewing craving… just visit my shop, there’s a discount code for you!