i had originally made this two summers ago, but hadn't worn it much because it was just too tight across the upper back area. but i am on a kick updating old pieces that didn't quite live up to my expectations and this was one of them. so after finding out how to to this if you end up with my problem, read on to see how i fixed it. (BTW, i look horrible in that first picture!! embarrassing. hurry up and look at the better photos!)
i undid the entire side seams and added in a long strip of material about 2 inches wide on each side. this gave me extra room under the arms and through the shoulders. now i love it!
i can wear it with so many things.
i love the pintucks.
i love the cute little collar.
super happy with this update.
so if you followed my tutorial and find that it is a light snug. try my simple fix and you will love it!
won't one and missed out to make it. just go back to the days prior to this and get the complete how to!
this top doesn’t use buttons it uses really large sewn on snaps. so go buy some and come back. i needed 7 , you may need more depending on the length you made and how far you want them to go.
back from shopping? great. let’s cut the snap band.
you need a strip of material the entire length of the front of your shirt + 1/2in for seam allowances. (sorry can’t remember my length)
then you need to decide how wide you want the band. i wanted mine to be 1.5 in wide. so double that and add 1/2in for seam allowance. (mine was 3.5in wide)
take one of them and fold it in half. stitch one end.
turn right side out. pin in place along the front of the shirt starting at the bottom and going to the top.
now since i suck at measuring, my piece was too long. imagine that! so if the same thing happens to you, trim away a bit keeping in mind you still need a seam allowance. now turn this end inside out. stitch and turn back to the right side and pin.
stitch the snap band in place. and then top stitch. do the same for the other side.
now lay out the shirt. and lay the snaps where you want them. mark the spots and then stitch into place.
if you look close, natalie’s snaps only go part way down you shirt. i stopped mine just at the waist. stop where ever you like.
repeat for the other side trying to line everything up well.
pictures of the completed top tomorrow. i now i should have shown you first. but this is more fun….
f you look closely at the picture again, you will see that the sleeves are gathered.
easiest way to do this is to find a sleeve pattern that you have that is made for gathers or is just bigger than you sleeve opening.
so first measure your sleeve opening. now find a sleeve pattern that is larger. if you don’t have one, try just copying the next size longer sleeve from a pattern that you have. or add extra width to the top of the sleeve pattern you do have.
cut two. of course.
pin in place starting at one side and pinning part way up the armhole. then do the same on the other side. this will show you how much extra you have left at the top for gathering.
gather the extra up and pin in place.
i always stitch my sleeves on using a running stitch. do that until you reach the gathered area. then backstitch the gathers and running stitch to the end.
the backstitching makes sure the material stays nice.
now the shirt is ready to be seamed together from sleeve to bottom. place right sides together. stitch and then top stitch from sleeve to bottom as well.
next post: button / snap band
now for the pintucked sections. first i should say that i hate math and measuring so i tend to kind of eyeball things or do things the long way to avoid math. because when i do the math…it just never seems to work out.
for the pintucked sections of the top i took an extra long piece of scrap material and just started pinning pintucks to see how much material i would need.
natalie’s has 5 or 6 pintucks but because i am making a small i could only fit 4. those into math figure 1/2in per pleat + the width of the side = width of rectangle to cut. mine was 13in wide.
now decide how long you want the shirt to be. natalie’s i like tunic length. i like shorter tops better. then you can determine the length of your shirt. i decided on 16in for the shirt and 23 in would make the tunic.
so cut two rectangles to those measurements (mine 13in x 16in). one for each side. mine are single layer unlike to top portion of the top that i made double layer.
the pintuck closest to the side of the shirt needs to end at about where you waist is. or basically where the back of your shirt is right now. if you look closely at natalie’s the pintucks get longer the closer they get to the center of the shirt. mark the waist with a safety pin.
now we need to mark the pintucks. the pintuck closest to the center of the shirt should align with the seam from the top of the shirt when the pintuck is folded over (because it will be once we stitch the top to the bottom).
stitching the pintucks.
fold the material at the pleat. place a pin where you want the pintuck to end. bring the needle up through the material at the pin. this will hide the knot on the inside of the fabric.
gradual stitch down from the fold to 1/4 in stitching to the end of the material and knot off.
repeat for each pintuck making each one a bit longer than the one before. i lengthened each by about 2cm.
now place right sides together lining up the top portion and the bottom pintucked section. make sure the pintucks all lay the same way and that the pintuck closest to the center lines up with the seam in the top. stitch together and then top stitch as well.
repeat for the other side of the front.
back bottom pintucks
ok. so here i had to fudge a bit because there was no clear picture of what the back of this thing looked like. i could tell there were pintucks but not how many. i decided to make 5 and center them in the back.
again i just pinned to see how much material i needed. you could just times the number of pintucks by 1/2in + width of back = width of back rectangle. (mine was 10in.) ok then take into account the actual width you need the entire rectangle to be to cover your back side when it is all stitched up. i didn’t and mine is a bit snug. going to have to go back in and add some more material. so i really needed a couple of more pintucks and then i would have been fine.
then measure the front of your shirt for the length that you need this back rectangle to be to meet up with the front correctly. (mine was 16.5 in).
cut the rectangle to size. mark pintucks. stitch the pintucks. i made the center pintuck the longest and then gradually made the next ones shorter.
place right sides together. stitch together making sure the pintucks all go in the same directions. then top stitch.
the collar of the shirt. we need it to be extra thick so that it stands up like in the original.
first measure the opening around the neckline of your shirt. you don’t want the collar to go all the way around the opening. the collar actually stops just short of the button band. so keep that in mind.
mine needed to be 17 in long + 1/4 in seam allowance on each end. so 17.5 in long. then i wanted it to be about an 1 1/4 wide and heavy. so for the width i made it 2 3/4 in wide. so that i can fold it in half for extra thickness.
i cut 2 pieces 17.5in long x 2.75in wide.
place right sides together. fold in half and finger press to make a crease. pin together and stitch along crease and sides. leave the first 1/4in of the side and the last 1/4in of the opposite side open. (skip a bit down and you will see why).
trim off at the corners and turn right side out. then stitch along the top of the collar hiding the knot on the inside of the collar.
you now have a nice thick collar.
pin the collar around the top of the neckline about 1/4in placing 2 layers of the collar on the outside of the neckline and two layers on the inside. stitch in place.
this is what your shirt should look like so far.
in the next post i will show you how to added the pintucked sections to the bottoms.
this is a tutorial that i had over at my old blog. i wanted to move it over to this platform plus i just did an update on the shirt that i will share at the end. enjoy!
the other day i watched this video about natalie chanin’s workshops on creativebug. and i couldn’t get the shirt she was wearing out of my mind. i just had to have one. and i just happened to have more tees laying around. imagine that!
here’s how i made the shirt…
keep in mind to follow this tutorial you need some basic knowledge about patterns, handstitching and piecing pieces together. get one of natalie’s books if you haven’t already to learn the basics.
first, get lots of pictures of the shirt from different views if you can.
then find some material that you think will work. i used 2 men’s hanes tees in size 3xl. gives you lots of material to work with.
now really examine all the details in the shirt. what pattern do you have that you can use to make this? i used the pattern from my henley shirt that i just made. because i needed to make a seam down the top center of the shirt.
the tops of the shirt:
mark the pattern a couple of inches below the armhole across the width of the front of the pattern pieces.
this line is wear you will fold the pattern pieces so that you can cut the top in the right shape.
if you don’t have a pattern with a center shoulder seam like this, then take your favorite tee shirt pattern. trace the top portion onto some freezer paper. draw a line down the center at a little bit of an angle. add 1/4 in seam allowance to the pieces and you are set.
deconstruct your tees and fold the front pieces in half. lay your pattern pieces on the material and cut according to directions. first i cut the center piece (which says to place on fold which i don’t need to do because i need two center pieces with a button band later). cut only from where you drew your line up. you may need to adjust the neck shape as well. you need a high neckline for the collar to be added on later.
i always just eyeball things. if you have a shirt with a nice high neckline you could copy it.
now fold the pattern up at the line you drew and add about 1/4 in for seam allowance later and then cut.
you now have the left and right sides of your center front.
follow the same directions for the other portion of the top of the pattern. first cutting along the edges of the pattern above the line, folding the pattern up, adding 1/4in seam allowance and cut. now you have both sides of your front top sections ready to stitch together.
i found that my material was too thin. so i cut 2 of each piece for double layering. if you are using a heavier weight cotton, that is unnecessary. stitch the center and side pieces together and then top stitch. repeat for other side.
from what i can tell in the pics…the back of the shirt fits to the waist. so for the back, draw a line across the width of your pattern pieces at the waist.
fold the material in half so that you are automatically cutting both sides of your shirt. my center piece calls for being placed on the fold. you want to do this on the back because there is now buttonband on the back! you could go ahead and cut two pieces and added a seam. just make sure you add some seam allowance as well.
cut around the pieces from the line up. fold at the line. add 1/4 in seam allowance and cut again.
stitch your back pieces together.
then stitch the shoulders of the front and back together.
see the next post for how to continue.
i have made my illustrations/doodles available as downloadable coloring pages.
since i like to work primarily in black and white, i thought that it might be fun to offer up my work as coloring pages. i figured that you all might have fun coloring them.
download the page as one set price and print as many times as you like.
print on cardstock for a longer lasting image or just print on regular paper for some fun or to pass the time. color with crayons, colored pencils marker what ever you wish.
if you do color some i would love to see them and would even feature them here on the blog. so send them to me!
i had originally planned on having a knit pattern to release last week. but after blocking and then hitting myself upside the head for my own stupidity it had to be put on hold. i wasn't happy with the yarn that i was using in the first place but i was trying to use something that i had. my knitting brain should gone on high alert and been all like..."duh! this won't work for lace!" but alas it was asleep. so the pattern is in limbo until i can find a suitable yarn to work it up in. but the pattern is already to go. oh well.
so to tide me over until i can start my next real design project, i started some mindless knitting from my dog attack yarn. (i had mentioned in a previous post that one of my dogs thought that my stripe study shawl in alpaca yarn was a chew toy. holes every where.)
it has been unraveled and is working its way into an interesting, long tube of mindless knitting. i am working towards a long tube like cowl similar to to Joji Locatelli's 3 color cashmere cowl. i figure i will knit with a color until i run into a break and then knit with the other color til i have a cowl about that length. since the shawl yielded varying lengths of yarn it should work out nicely. and i won't be wasting this beautiful alpaca yarn!