Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Mens Button Up Shirt reconstructions

Last week, Louis and I did some late spring cleaning.  I cleaned out my shoes and he cleaned out his clothes.  I refused to clean my clothes out because you never know what you can use to make something better.  While Louis was cleaning his side of the closet, I started to get sad because there were quite a few shirts he was getting rid of that I liked.  But, then I started to get excited because my pile of reconstruction clothes was getting bigger and bigger.  After I had looked through the pot of gold pile of old clothes and found my favorite shirts, I went online and started looking for button up shirts that I liked that I could try to copy.  After only a few minutes I found this shirt.
from the Buckle
 I really love the ruffled bottom and the band across the waist.  So, I set out to try to come close to this shirt.....I won't keep you in suspense.  I failed miserably!  I had these two shirts I was going to use to convert into the Buckle shirt.

I was going to use the brown shirt for the ruffles on the bottom.  I didn't plan on doing the  ruffles on the sleeves or the fabric around the collar.  So, it seemed like an easier reconstruction.  To start off I took the sleeves, pocket, and collar off with my seam ripper...ok maybe not a seam ripper but I have not been able to find my seam ripper in over a month!
 So, this is what I had left after taking those seams out.......
body of shirt minus the sleeves, collar, and pocket

collar pieces...I will be using these again
My next step was to take the body of the shirt in so it will be fitted.  My plan was to take the sides in just a tad and then put some darts in when I got to my next step.  I put the shirt on inside out and pinned the sides leaving some wiggle room.   After pinning I sewed where I pinned. 

I then found the verticle center of the shirt and the middle of the collar and pinned the two together.
This next part I kinda reverse the belt part compared to the inspirational shirt.  The only reason I did this was well.....because it was easier for me to do.  I created it in two parts.  Here is the first.

find the center of the back of the shirt
I pinned it so I knew where it was

found the center of the piece of collar fabric

pinned the two middle spots together

Then, after I measured from the bottom of the shirt to the safety pin I measured the sides the same way to make sure the piece of collar was going to be straight across.  I then pinned the sides of the collar fabric to the sides of the shirt.
pinned the side after measuring from the bottom

pinned the other side

pinning the collar fabric to the back left side you want to do this on both sides

pinning the collar fabric to the middle of the back of the shirt

I then pinched what extra fabric there was in the middle and pinned
After I had the collar fabric pinned to the back of the shirt I used a straight stitch and sewed it down.

  My next step was the sleeves.  They were probably the easiest thing for me to do!  I used the existing sleeves and folded them in half like this and stuffed them into the shirt.

Yeah, I know poor picture, but here is a video to hopefully help you see it a little better

The next thing I started to work on was the collar.  I was originally just going to make it more like the inspiration shirt by rounding it just a bit....but I took my shirt in too much!  Yeah, a newbie mistake.  So, to keep myself from busting out of the shirt, I had to alter my collar and the front of the shirt.   I started by putting the shirt on inside out and pinning it trying to make it look cute and even.  Then, I sewed it using this foot which folded the seam over for me 

It was as simple as that.  Here is the picture of the pinned shirt.
I actually cut of as much as I could before sewing it. 

Remember that belt? Here is how I made the second part of the belt.  I cut sections of the left over fabric from the sleeves and sewed them together making 6 strips long enough, if attached to my side, it could reach past my other side if stretched across the front.  Then I took 3 of those 6 strips and braided them together and sewed the ends to make them look a little prettier.  I repeated the braiding on the other 3 strips.  Then I sewed them to the sides of the shirt where the collar fabric that was sewed to the back of the shirt touched.  I sewed a button on each side to add a small embellishment and that completed my belt.

  Remember that brown shirt at the beginning?  I was going to make that the pleats on the bottom of the button up.  Well, that was the part that I failed miserably at.  After cutting up sections of the fabric and trying and trying to make the pleats, I decided I didn't have enough fabric to make the pleats the way I wanted them to look.  So, I trashed the idea of the pleats but still wanted some type of girly aspect to the shirt.  So, I decided to go with a fabric flower using the brown shirt.  Here is the tutorial, from Tea Rose Home, I used to help me make my flower and here are some pictures of my flower while I was making it. 

 After making the flower I sewed the flower onto a safety pin and pinned it onto my shirt.  I thought making a pin would be better than sewing the flower onto the shirt.  This way I can take it off to wash it separate from the shirt.

So here is the moment where I paparazzi'd myself.  It was my if no one else is gonna do it....I'll just do it myself moments.

In case you couldn't tell, here is the back of the shirt

my "is someone taking a picture of me look"

Add caption

I love my wooden ring!

So, moving on....  I love this shirt.  I have paired it with a brown cami.  Which actually matches the flower, but for some reason it doesn't look like it in the pictures.  I like the fit of it and best of all it makes me look a little slimmer.  Who could ask for anything more?  What do you all think of it?

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