My mother and I were shopping in Walmart last week and we fell in love with a $6 painted tee in the plus department. Since my mother is not a plus size and she prefers turtlenecks, I rebuilt the tee. Here are the before and after photos.
|Size 5x Walmart tee "before"|
|Walmart tee "after"|
If you want to restyle a garment, purchase the largest size available so you have fabric for collars, sleeves etc. The garment went together within in an hour, and it was fun to sew something simple.
Next I was inspired by Silhouette Patterns Sunny's top http://silhouettepatterns.com/html/patterns/p_113.htm. The layers are interesting and the pattern includes bust darts. Peggy Sagers (owner of Silhouette Patterns) is an advocate for using darts to improve fit in the armhole and bust, in both woven and knit garments. To avoid a disappointing fit, I made a test garment out of cotton/lycra from my stash. While the fabric is good quality, the color is not flattering to me. I basted the test garment together.
|machine basted tee shirt|
|Sunny's Top front|
|Sunny's Top back|
I liked the layers of Sunny's Top but I knew my mother would be too warm in the layers. I used Mom's standard tee pattern and added a few layers. I cut a second front with an angled hemline that starts just below the bust. I cut three sleeves of graduated lengths, and basted them together along the armscye and stitched as one. The key is making sure the hem edges all curl to either the underside or outside.
|Mom's turtleneck tee front|
|Mom's tee sleeve detail|