Making a t-shirt

There are two reasons why I made a t-shirt over the weekend:

1. I like winging it when it comes to sewing. This often leads to failure, but I somehow cannot help thinking “What if I change this detail?” when I’m in the middle of a project. Maybe it’s my strong desire for variety, maybe I just love to see myself make mistakes, but there is something rewarding about deviating from the well-known path. So despite not having a t-shirt pattern, I decided I could create one from a pattern I own by adapting it.

2. DHL is on strike… While I sympathise with the delivery guys, I am desperately waiting for some fabric which was meant to come on Friday. So while trying not to go crazy over all the things I want to make with those new fabrics I don’t have yet, I decided to make something simple with some leftovers.

So, here is what I did:

I used the fabric and pattern that I made this dress¬†from. The dress bodice pattern would serve as my t-shirt template. Similarly, if you have a T-Shirt that fits you well, you can use that as a template. I didn’t have a huge amount of fabric, so unfortunately the shirt had to be a bit shorter than I would like.

Here is the pattern on the fabric, while I started cutting it. I cut the bottom pretty free-hand, but cut outwards from the bottom of the pattern, which sits at my waist, to make sure it’s not too tight around my stomach.

 

pattern on fabric

 

I also cut the neckline a bit higher, so it wouldn’t be as low as it is on the dress.

 

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I cut to about halfway, then folded the pattern in the middle, so I could cut the rest out along the lines that I had already cut.

 

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Then I cut along the hemline to straighten it out:

 

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I thought it might look interesting with a perfectly straight hem, not a curved one, as usual. It turned out that wasn’t the greatest idea…

 

One of the bodice pieces got a V-neckline, just for a change.

 

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I also used the sleeves I made for the dress before. Here are all the pattern pieces cut out:

 

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The neckband of this one is probably the most interesting part. I cut it as a triangle made of three pieces:

 

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Here they are sewn together (with my overlocker):

 

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and pinned on:

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You can see how it pulls the neckline in, since it is smaller.

 

And here is the result of my neckband-creation:

 

neckband added

 

 

After sewing the t-shirt together with the overlocker, I finished it off with the Merrylock 3040, which I am still trying to get to know. I am starting to wonder if there is a way to change the height of the position of the presser foot , as it just hates anything above two layers of fabric even at the loosest setting.

In any case, here is the finished product:

t-shirt front

 

t-shirt back

 

It looks a bit crooked, which is ok with me, as it’s stretchy, so it won’t be noticeable when I wear it. However, you can also see the warped hemlines, which I blame the Merrylock for. Admittedly, it might be slightly my fault too, as I am not the most precise seamstress yet. Nevertheless, I feel like the coverlocker doesn’t exactly make things easy for me, which is ironic, really, as I bought it for exactly that reason.

The whole thing probably took me about two hours. Next time, I will sacrifice an old t-shirt, so I have a pattern that I know will work.