Day 8 of Me-Made-May 2012 challenge saw me wearing my very very first refashion ever! It was a t-shirt project, where I took a thrifted 2XLT men's long-sleeved cotton t-shirt, and made it into a top for me. However, the night before that I did make considerable tweaks on that original version.
Here is the original refashion that was done not quite 2 years ago:
It is longish (I wanted a tunic, so I retained the original t-shirt length), also retained the original round neck (with its neck bind), cut off the sleeves, and cut up the sleeves into strips that I then sew back onto the t-shirt's front in a swirly design.
I did not come up with this idea though! I was just looking around online and stumbled on sewing and craft blogs (for the first time), and found this amazing tutorial by Suzannah of Adventures in Dressmaking (fyi she was blog swapping with Alli of One Pearl Button for this particular tutorial) and thought that since I had by then, during maternity leave, finally mustered enough bravado to tackle the sewing machine I should try it. The tutorial I mean.
It's quite a straight forward DIY project, so I think if you just click on the link above, read her how-tos, you'll get the gist of it and can go on your merry way. Which was what I did.
I am not familiar with Anthropologie (still don't) but I get the benefit of seeing the pretty things from the many fabulous bloggers that get a lot of inspiration from them (and other fashion brands, especially now with people sharing on Pinterest).
Anyways, I wanted a longer top and not a tank, and did not want the strips of t-shirt fabric to hang off my chest and tummy (errmm, I just gave birth at the time y'all. And 2 years on, I still feel the same re this).
Since my t-shirt strips curled up immediately after cutting (and my guess was of heavier/thicker cotton material than theirs), it gave me a different look and texture than what the tutorial and its inspiration top did, and an opportunity to have them (the sewn strips) stay closer to the t-shirt fabric (also because I sew in the middle of the strips instead of more to one side). A reminder though, a thicker t-shirt material means all those additional material sewn onto your front = heavier/warmer top.
You can of course further personalize your top when you decide what design you want to have. I tested a few variation (by pinning the fabric this and that way) before settling on what I considered the best for me.
So that was what it looked like when I made it back in 2010. I wore it often but mostly at home, or buried under down jacket and scarfs. The color of the t-shirt is what my mother will call poo color :) and being clueless re fit and proportion, the way I sew the sides, the length plus the weight of the top made me look like stuffed sausage or cylindrical... not flattering much.
The hubby was more hesitant when I told him I'm about to refashion my first refashion. More nostalgic and said that I should keep it for posterity. Hmmm? Say what? At least I think that was what he said. I said, okay I will just take pic of it for documentation and put it on this page :) Taraaaa...
I ripped out the neck binding, and just stitched down the opening. A much better frame for my face, and I can breathe better too. Would have done this sooner if I knew what was wrong....
Close up of neckline and the sewn up swirly strips:
I cut off the bottom/hem by 7 inches, and used all that fabric to make the bottom sides wider. It gives a better shape/proportion to my body.
And here is my pic for MMM'12 day 8! IMO an interesting, casual top....
You can check out what the other MMM'12 participants put together on our Flickr group.