This shirt belonged to my son until I made him clean out his closet and get rid of everything that was too small. He probably wore it less than half a dozen times, about two hours at a go, for band concerts. He’s a t-shirt kid. The shirt is a boys’ size medium and for some reason I pulled it out of the donation bag and tried it on. The voice in my head said “I can make this into something.” I was still feeling pretty good about the T-Shirt Refashion from last week. This one was more complicated, but we all need a challenge once in a while, right?
Try the shirt on and mark where you’d like the armholes to be. I know that’s vague, but it’s a personal decision. I marked mine with masking tape and a few pins. Cut, remembering that you’ll have to hem those armholes and you'll need an extra 5/8".
Cut off the bottom also, if needed, allowing for 1" hem.
I’d like to point out that it’s an excellent idea to iron the shirt before you start so everything lays flat and evenly. I wish I’d realized that sooner.
Put shirt on inside out and pin to fit. Take off, mark stitching line on both sides and stitch. Try it on again before you go cutting anything. Trust me.
For a 1” hem and 2” vents (those little slits on the bottom of the side seam on shirts), mark 3 ½” up from the bottom edge near the seam. Trim the seam to ½” from the bottom to that mark and ¼” above that. Remove stitching in the seam to ½” below mark, clip at mark, almost to stitching and zigzag seam above.
Press seam toward back. Press vent open, folding fabric back ½” on each side. Roll under ¼” and stitch around vent near fold and ¼” from opening at the top.
Turn bottom edge up 1”, then under ½”. Turn each corner in to prevent any raw edges from showing on the outside.
Stitch close to fold.
At this point, I tried my shirt on and decided I wanted more of a racer-back, so I carved the armhole larger in the back on both sides. In order to keep it even, I cut one side, flipped the piece over and used it as a pattern to cut the other.
To hem the armholes, turn under 5/8”, press, then turn under again to meet the fold and stitch close to fold. Iron.
Here are my mistakes, which I tell you only to help you avoid them: I cut too close to the front pockets, so their corners ended up in my armhole hem; I cut the armholes too deeply in the front so I will have to wear a tank under it, which I had planned to do anyway; there is a button that’s too close to the bottom hem, but I didn’t know how to get rid of the button hole, so I left it. Those are the big ones.
Overall, I’m pretty happy with the way it turned out. I also like it with a belt. Now to break the news to my son that I girlied-up one of his shirts. Actually, he’ll probably just be happy he doesn’t have to wear it anymore.