Saturday, November 26, 2011

Basic steps for how to alter a t-shirt

I am going to attempt to do a mini-tutorial to show how I went about altering some basic boy t-shirts to a more flattering girl shirt to do freezer stenciling on.

I started with a plain white Hanes t-shirt in size M(6-8). I looked for basic girls shirts in a multi pack but couldn't find any, so I had to settle for the boys version. But to make them into a cute girly shirt I wanted to alter them a little so they weren't so big and boxy. This shirt was for a friend's little girl who just turned 7. Luckily I have some cute bigger size shirts stashed for Evie in totes, so I grabbed an Old Navy size small which is around a 6/7 I think.

I started by cutting the sleeves off as close to the seems as I could, then I laid the other shirt over and cut along the sides about 1/2 to 3/4 inch away to give a little room for growth. I left the length because it was only a little longer than I wanted it and it made it a lot faster!
 Next, I took the sleeves, one at a time, and pinned them back onto the shoulder putting right sides together. I started with the center and then went out towards each end.
Then I used my serger and reattached it. I repeated this on the other sleeve and then I flipped the shirt right sides together (sorry I forgot to take a picture) and pinned the sleeves and sides together, making sure that the end of the sleeve and the bottom shirt hem were lined up. I serged these too, starting at the sleeve and finishing at the bottom hem.
 There are a few different ways you can take care of the ends of the serger thread. You can tie them off, snip them and use fray check or, like I did below, thread them back into the serged edge.

 Then, I had Evie model it over her pj's. This is what happens when I say "smile at the camera"! If there are any distractions she smiles while looking at them instead.
 And, I couldn't help showing off the pretty black sparkly M! I LOVE the glitter topcoat... maybe more than the one I used on the Kenzie onsie (though this picture doesn't do it justice). I'm so bummed that they are clearing them out at Hancock's... well, not about the price I guess :) But I'm going to have to go grab whatever they have left!
So, that's it! I have a few shirts that I need to use this on - like the XL shirt from my 1st July 4th 5k run. GIGANTIC! And poor Evie doesn't have a freezer stencil shirt yet either!

Note: If you don't have a serger, you will want to use a stretch stitch if possible. I'm not sure how a zig zag would work for side seems. If you shorten any of the hems, my suggestion is to get a double needle, they are incredibly easy to use and give the shirt that nice finished look AND they stretch like a zig zag stitch so they are great for knit fabric. Here is a great tutorial on different stitches and using a double needle.

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