Tuesday, April 29, 2014

52 Weeks of Sewing: Week 2: Altering a T-Shirt

Unless I know exactly what I am buying and have worn it before, I rarely buy clothing online.  It never seems to fit like it should and it feels incredibly wasteful to me to ship something back even if it is free shipping.

But a few months ago (ok, let me think, it might actually have been last summer, oops) I fell victim to an online sale at one of my favorite shops, Pin Up Girl Clothing.  Their dresses are adorable and I've actually gone to their shop in L.A. to try things on so I know what I can buy online later, but they had this awesome Star Wars vintage style t-shirt on sale and I read the reviews on sizing and thought a large would be ok.  But then it came and it was swimming on me.  I think it's supposed to be a little loose and meant to show off a bra or tank top underneath, but I felt like I was wearing a muumuu.

My old sewing machine wasn't so hot with stretch fabrics so I set it aside.  Now, however, I have my new Brother sewing machine, multi-tasker that it is, and I just knew that I could now tackle this teeny tiny project.  
First of all, I needed to take in the seam.  I set the stitch to setting "3" which does a triple stitch, meant exactly for stretch fabrics and sewed down the seam 1.25 inches in. 

Here's a close up view.  That triple stitch really holds the fabric well.  I didn't want to leave this giant seam, however, so I decided to trim it off.

Trimmed was going to be more comfortable to wear, but I needed to overlock that seam so the fabric wouldn't unravel over time.

I don't own a serger, but my sewing machine has many different feet and came with an over lock foot.   The foot on the left is my normal sewing foot.  The one on the right, the "G" is meant specifically for overlock and is compatible with stretch fabrics.  Note where the arrow is pointing.  That is where you put the edge of the seam to make sure it becomes overlocked.   I found a great video quickly explaining it as well: How to Use the Brother Overlock Foot.

Here's the finished seam.  It doesn't look at neat and tidy as a serger, but I think with practice, it will look better each time I do one.

Here's the finished shirt.  It's still a little big around the bottom but I am very happy with the results because now I can actually wear it! 

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