I drew this design and wanted to make it a reality! So with a few simple tools and a little bit of trial and error I brought my sketch to life!
What You’ll Need:
- 3-4 yards of fabric (have more than you need when creating your own pattern it’s a lifesaver) the fabric must stretch (cotton stretchy t shirt fabric works the best)
- One form fitting t- shirt that you wear often
- Tissue paper or parchment paper
- Other vital sewing notions
- First, I sketched out my design which helped me figure out how to make the pattern for this design.
- Next I take the old t-shirt, fold it in half vertically and lay it on my tissue paper which is also folded in half vertically.
- Trace it in pencil first (very carefully) leave at least an inch or two for seam allowance!
- Cut out the tissue paper bodice, pin it to the fabric and cut two pieces from it.
- The bodice length will only go to the small of your waist plus an inch for seam allowance – measure carefully.
- Cut a “v” for the front part of the bodice for the neck hole.
- Cut a gentle sloping “u” shape for the neck hole on the back.
- Make sure both pieces align properly where the shoulders will be.
- Cut long two inch strips from your fabric and sew them on to both of the neck holes separately just as you would see on bias tape.
- Pin the shoulders together to test and make sure the neck hold fits and lays properly and that you can comfortably fit your head through the neck.
- Sew the two shoulder pieces together leaving the neck hole as a gap.
- Skip the area where the sleeves will be attached and pin the sides and test the bodice to make sure everything fits properly, then new accordingly.
- To make sleeves cut two identical rectangles of fabric that fit the arms and are cut at an angle on one end (as shown). Cut them on the fold so that there’s only one seam for each sleeve.
- Sew down the short, open side (right sides together). Do this for both sleeves.
- Each sleeve should only come to just above the elbow.
- Pin them to the bodice right sides together, test for proper fit, and sew accordingly.
- Cut two circles out of the fabric that are large enough for 3 1/4 length sleeve ruffles these should be approximately as long as your sleeves. These will be very large circles.
- Cut a smaller circle in the circle, pin them and adjust them to taste and sew them right sides together to the actual sleeve.
- Next measure the small of your waist and double that measurement and then add another measure and half to that. This will be the length of the bottom, ruffled part of the bodice. The width will be the measure to the top of your hip plus a few inches for a hem and seam allowance.
- Gather one of the long sides of the rectangle until it basically fits around the small of your waist. (Here is a very crude picture of the final product: gathered on the top, sewn together on the side and hemmed on the bottom)
- Sew the short sides right side together to make a tube that’s gathered at one end.
- Hem the ungathered edge.
- CAREFULLY pin and sew this to the bottom of the other half of the bodice. Sew it very slowly so you don’t mess up the gathering distribution.