A couple of weeks ago, I showed you this picture of our family proudly sporting our church’s “e” logo.

I told you that it was the night before we were to bring our plain T-shirts to our church gathering to have them screen-printed that I remembered it was the night before we were to bring our plain T-shirts to our church gathering to have them screen-printed. And I told you that since neither of my children had a plain T-shirt in their closet, I had the opportunity to pull out my re-purpose bin (a box where I collect cast-offs waiting for new life) to put together a few screen-printable shirts.

I already shared a photo tutorial for this dress I made for Selah Mae from a small lady’s shirt.

Today, I thought I’d share how I made this little boy size shirt from a regular adult size one.

Dana of MADE, has a fabulous tutorial for a shirt just like this, which she calls “The 90-Minute Shirt”. Originally, I just planned on giving you the link for her tutorial when I shared mine for the little dress. However, when scrolling through it I realized she actually attaches the sleeves differently. My method cuts out a few steps and is a bit simpler and more forgiving…so I thought I’d share 🙂

The shirt I started with is one of the matching shirts that we wore on a family vacation to Houston with my parents and siblings a couple of years ago. My mom came up with the saying “I don’t know these people” which we ironed on the shirts. We got so many compliments the day we wore them…people got quite a kick out of it. Unfortunately, this unflattering picture is the best one I have with most of us in it:

I made Josiah a matching baby-size t-shirt. It was my first t-shirt re-purpose project like this. Instead of re-using the sleeve and shirt hems as I do in the following tutorial, I re-used only the sleeve hems. I made my own hem on the bottom of the shirt so that I could re-use the neckline of the t-shirt. Obviously, nailing down a method for things like this has been a work in progress 🙂

He sure was a chubby little thing!

But back to the tutorial:

1. Cut two smaller sleeves from the existing sleeves and two bodice pieces. I determined the size of each based on the shirts that were in Josiah’s closet. Dana actually cut up a shirt to make her pattern: a great idea if you have a cast-0ff child’s shirt to use. For the extra overlap part at the shoulder, you want to measure the length from the armpit to the top of the shoulder, and add about half that length again. (I work in approximations.) Please see Dana’s tutorial for more helpful tips.2. Out of a contrasting knit, cut a strip about an inch wide and the length of the top edges of the bodice pieces you just cut. I serged the edges for decoration, but since knit does not unravel, this is not a necessary step.

3. Iron the strip in half and then sew it on to the unfinished top edge (this will be the neckline).

4. Lay the front side of the shirt out with the right side up. Lay the back side of the shirt down on top of it (also with the right side up), overlapping at the shoulders (the back side of the shirt should be upside down):

5. Pin the sleeves to the arm openings, right sides together. Start at each armpit and work in, adjusting the amount of overlap in the shoulders to fit the length of the sleeve. Check to be sure that the amount of overlap (the distance from the edge of the binding to the armpit) is the same for each sleeve.6. Sew it together.7. Fold the shirt in half, right sides together and sew along the side-seams from the edge of the sleeve to the bottom of the shirt. 8. Flip it right side out…and that’s all there is to it 🙂Here it is, before and after (the color of the shirt did not change…I just have poor lighting in my sewing room):This button can now be found on my portfolio page:

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  1. Jami @monstermamas says:

    This is awesome. My son and husband share a love..er..obsession lol… with Star Wars, and I would love to cut up a few of my husband’s old star wars shirts for my son.. not to mention a number of other shirts that I think would be way cuter on him haha. This method looks simple enough to add to my try list 🙂 ( and I so love the little dress.. I wish my little girl was still small enough for those lol)

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