A quick alteration

I bought this shirt from Madewell quite impulsively; it was on sale and in a simple pattern I really loved. I didn’t pay to much attention to the fit or style of the shirt until it arrived and realized it was a ‘boyfriend’ fit. Aka, oversized (it even reads that on the tag) and baggy. With the exception of the models on the website – I doubt there is really anyone that is flattered by a loose fit.

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So I figured this was an excellent time for me to try out my alteration skills.

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You can see here there is a lot of room in the torso and the shirt tail is longer in the back.

I found a button down that I know fits me well, and laid it on top of the Madewell shirt as flat and straight as I could. I marked where my new seam line would go and then basted along those lines.

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After checking the fit I used my serger to trim off the excess and finish the new edges. I also gave the back hem a lift so now it matches the front.

And tada! A shirt that fits! I’m thrilled. The sleeves could probably be taken in as well, but I usually roll my sleeves up anyways so I didn’t bother.

I have plenty more sewing projects on the horizon so hopefully I will be posting more soon.

(photos via Madewell)

Spring Linen

This weekend I finally carved some time out for sewing. Weeks ago I bought all that nice fabric but admittedly I’m too nervous to use it. I know I want to make a Linden Sweatshirt with that super pricey jacquard , but I want to do it right – meaning with a serger – so that project is on hold until I come to own an overlock machine.

I’ve also been thinking critically about what I want to achieve with sewing. The last shirt I made was really a bust. It offered me a chance to practice some skills, but its not something I’ll ever wear. The fabric was cheap and my handiwork was sloppy – which is exactly what I am trying to avoid by learning to sew; disposable garments! Making some crap items is of course unavoidable as I learn new techniques and improve my skills – but I want to be a little more deliberate as I go forward.

With that said, I’ve spent a lot of time gathering photo inspiration of wardrobe staples I want to have a hand at. This photo below really jumped out at me. A simple linen shirt that looks great with work pants. I figured it was simple enough that I could try something similar.

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I used the Akira pattern from Seamwork Magazine, and a medium weight linen. The pattern is only one piece. One Piece!! It sewed up very quickly (for me anyways). I finished the side seams with french seams and the neckline with bias tape (that I made myself!). This is hands-down the best thing I have made to date: construction-wise. No raw edges, clean hems, darts, and bias tape?! There are a few imperfections but none that will stop me from wearing this to work tomorrow.

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This has really given me a lot of confidence in my skills. I just need to remember to take my time – it makes me such a more accurate sewist. And the proper final touches really save this from being just a potato sack!