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The Husband Shirt – A Sewing Tutorial

January 19, 2012

I bet you didn’t know that I love to sew since all I talk about is knitting.  I haven’t been sewing much lately but I’ve been bitten by the bug and I’m now obsessed with sewing my own clothes.  I’m just waiting for a free and clear weekend that I can sit at the kitchen table with Springfield (That’s my machine’s name.  It’s a Singer.  Get it yet?  My name is Dusty + Singer sewing machine = Dusty Springfield… Yes.  I do astound myself with my own cleverness.) and just sew to my little heart’s content. 

But, to give myself a quick fix in the sewing department, I took my husband’s Christmas gift from last year (still had the tags on it…) and cut it down to size!  Tutorials abound on upcycling or repurposing old shirts and what have you but I thought I’d give a go at writing my own tutorial for The Knit Life (ironic that the tutorial is for sewing, no?) so, I’m sorry if it sucks, but here it is!

Take an over-sized t-shirt (this was Mens XL)


Find a t-shirt that you really love and lay it over the top


Cut around the shirt leaving a seam allowance and if you are going to serge, be sure you are leaving enough to serge and sew.  This is where I forgot to take a picture but I just cut around, leaving myself 5/8 seam allowance.  Instead of cutting the bottom of the XL shirt, I cut straight up so that I would have a really long t-shirt that I can wear long or kind of ruffle it up if I want.

Also, I cut the sleeves off at the serge point, leaving the serging on and letting it fold back naturally, then stitched around it as a hem (that part comes later in the tutorial).


Seam down the sides from under arm to bottom hem.


Reinforce your stitching:  Finger press the seams open and place it back under your presser foot.  Center the seam on the presser foot and adjust your needle setting so that it sews just to the right of the seam.


When you reach the armhole, branch off and sew down the serged edge mentioned above as your arm-hole seam. 

Allow the fabric to move where it needs to for the most natural seam.  You can see here that as I move into the armhole from the side seam it gives me a little pointy bit that I trimmed off after.  Follow this around the arm-hole and continue to stitch down the other side of the side seam, keeping the seam centered. 

When you have finished this, Go back and select a zig-zag stitch or some other sort and reinforce your seam just under your arm.

And, Ta Da!

Yeah, it looks a little muscle shirt-esq but once it is on, those little sleeves look like cute cap sleeves and not I-Should-Have-A-Mullet-esq sleeves.

 I do have a picture of me wearing this but can’t find it.  I will have to take another.

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