Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Men's XL Flannel to Women's Fitted Shirt

Hello Crafty Foxes and Foxy Crafters,

I'm finally posting my first tutorial since my little Wildeman was born! This refashion posed a special challenge for me as I am refashioning for my post-pregnancy body, and it's very unlike the body I am used to sewing for. Not only is it bigger in size (40 of 65 lbs to go!), my breasts have gone rogue. I was a generous A before I got knocked up, then I swelled all the way up to an E and am still getting the hang of these Ds I've been left with. TMI? Well, I think it's a valuable piece of information for other refashioners who have experienced weight/body changes for any number of reasons. So this was very much trial and error as fitting a shirt to my bust line before meant very little.


On with the tutorial>>> 

Men's XL Flannel to Women's Fitted Shirt

Last week hubby, Wildeman and I went down to Value Village for a refashion shopping spree. Few of my non-maternity clothes fit but my maternity stuff is way too big. It's a nasty middle zone. We spent 90$ on 17 items to refashion. Plenty of bang for our buck as long as I can make sure everyone of these refashions turns out properly. I have been looking for a flannel shirt to tailor for myself for a while but have found it hard to find one in good condition. 

Finally success! I found this one for 7.99 at Value Village. 

The first step was to carefully remove the cuffs and breast pocket with my seam ripper. It was especially important for me to retain the cuffs as I was planning to reattach them once I had shortened the sleeves.

Then I folded the shirt and pinned it together so that my cuts would be even. I removed the sleeves in order to narrow the shoulders. 

Pinned together perfectly.

Couldn't find my chalk, my cut line is marked with pins.

Detaching the sleeves.

Sleeve sewed back into place. 
See the difference between the broad shoulder and the narrowed one. 

Once the shoulders fit I narrowed the arms as well.

Then I shortened the sleeves and reattached the cuffs.

Short arms :)
I worked really hard to keep these seams perfect!

Then I narrowed the waist and added darts in the back for shaping. I did the waist first so I would know where to place the darts in the back. To place the darts I divided the back of the shirt into thirds and put the two darts at even intervals.

Dammit! Forgot a before picture of the back of the shirt! Believe me, it was huge.

Now for the hard part. Figuring out where, how deep and how long to place the darts to shape the bust was a pain in the ass and took a really long time. I took cues from the two (I work at home) button down shirts that I own but they were both shaped in very different ways and while they fit me beautifully pre-pregnancy they don't so much now. But, finally, after pinning and re-pinning and pinning again I figured it out.

I shaped the bust with a vertical dart that lined up with my nipple and then a horizontal dart below. 

Not bad for my first tailoring job!

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