Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Converting (Lose the Sleeves!)

Everybody has a favorite t-shirt, whether it's funny, or has their favorite band, etc.  Well, Rachel has quite a collection, but being the stylish lady that she is, wanted something cuter to wear.  In preparation for New York Comic Con, she asked me to take an Anathema shirt and turn it into a v-neck.  Here's what I did.

First, we decided where she wanted the neckline to fall.  She likes a deep V, and wanted to make it about 4 inches lower than the natural neckline of the shirt.  No problem, except for that would have cut into the logo.  My logo.  So that wasn't happening. :)  I decided I would lower the neckline by turning it into a tank, and using the sleeves to add the extra length to the straps.

Second, I deconstructed the shirt.  With the aid of my handy dandy seam ripper and a good cooking show, I now had a tube of a shirt, and some weird scraps of ribbing, etc.

Then, I found the center of the neckline, and traced out the lovely V.

I used a tank of mine to determine what to do with the back, and decided to basically leave it where it was.  I added the sleeve material directly to the back.

Here's where I made Rachel try it on a bunch.  We figured out exactly how the neckline needed to lay, and pinned it in place.  I sewed it up.  Then, I used the tank of mine to trace the armhole.

But I realized that it was hanging all wonky because I had lowered the front of the shirt. (Wonky is the technical term for lower in the front than the back.) That, plus the fact that the original arm hole protruded, and made for a very weird side seam.

Side seam with new arm hole (left) and original arm hole (right).  
I came to the conclusion that I had to split the sides.  I had been trying to avoid this, but I couldn't find a way around it in the time that I had.  (I'm still working on it.) So I split the sides (taking probably a foot out of the circumference of this 3x tee), sewed them back together, trimmed the bottom hem, re-hemmed, and finished off the arm holes.  It's pretty dang cute, if I may say so! 

Zig-zag stretch stitch.  I really liked the less-finished look of this one.

Finally, the exclusive Anathema v-neck tank!

By the time I get through converting Rachel's wardrobe of band t-shirts into cuter ones, I'll have this system down pat!  

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