Alter a Boxy T-Shirt (You CAN Sew)
If you like your t-shirts to be a bit longer than the average t-shirt available for women, there is a simple solution! Either purchase the shirt up a couple of sizes (meaning, you should purchase an XL if you wear a medium), or simply purchase a men’s t-shirt, and alter the larger shirt to fit. Yes, I said
Don’t be afraid of this word. Alter is a good word after all, and it means you will be making your clothes fit better thereby creating a flattering image rather than making you look frumpy and unkempt.
I prefer for my shirts to hit me at my resting low hip (when I am just standing around doing nothing). This way, when I move or reach for something, I’m not showing off my midriff (which, after 4 kids, doesn’t need to be seen…but I digress). In order to accomplish this preferred length, I must purchase my shirts a few sizes larger than my actual size. If you are a tad fluffy, then the only way to go is to purchase larger men’s shirts since their sizing is a bit more generous – boxy, but generous. The problem then becomes that the shirt swallows me whole. It is the right length, but that is the only thing right about it.
So, in comes the alter part: (I am by no means an artist, so please bear with me on the following sketches!)
1. Pre-wash and dry the larger shirt, and turn it inside out. (You weren’t really expecting a sketch for this part, were you?) 😉
2. Lay it on a clean, flat surface like the kitchen table with the front of the shirt facing up. Fuss with the shirt to smooth it out and align all of the seams.
3. Following the seam, remove the sleeves. Then, remove the underarm seam from the sleeve.
4. Lay a shirt that you love the fit of (even if it is too short) on top of the larger shirt, being careful to line up the collars and keep things centered and smooth.
5. Tuck the top shirt’s sleeves inside.
7. Pin on the inside of the lines you’ve drawn. (I pinned on the outside of the lines and found it to be more difficult when sewing.)
8. Using a straight stitch (5-8 spi), sew on the lines you’ve drawn. (Let the machine’s feed dogs do the work. Try not to push or pull the fabric. Remember to lock your seams.)
10. Attach the sleeves (pin 1st working from the shoulder seam out to the underarm). Because you’ve altered the shirt size, the sleeves will overlap at the underarm. Finish attaching the sleeve, and cut away the excess fabric where the sleeve meets the shirt. Seam the sleeve from the overlap out, and then use a rolled hem to finish the sleeves.
Now you have a longer, less boxy, more modest, feminine t-shirt! Good work!
Entry filed under: Modesty Matters.