Swag Tee-shirt Reconstruction Part 1: How I do it

One of my favorite things I get from Con going are free tees. Who doesn’t like free clothes? The down side is a majority of the time the shirts that are given away don’t fit. Not many of them are cut to fit a woman or run in the smaller sizes. But hey, it’s free so I make the best of it. I’ll show you how to re-size according to what I like to do here (Dolman style) and then in the next post I’ve rounded up a bunch of links for all kinds of tee shirt revamps to help you find something that works for you!

What you’ll need

  • Awesome swag shirt (or any t-shirt you want to revamp)
  • A shirt you like the fit of to use as a guide
  • Scissors
  • Pins (They’re in my little hipster doll)
  • Matching thread
  • Sewing machine or needle if you’re doing it by hand

Lay the shirt you want to refit onto a flat surface, making sure the wrinkles are smoothed out, and then place the shirt you’re using as a guide on top – inside out. You want the guide shirt inside out to let you use the seams as a better guide. Carefully cut the sides of the swag shirt and along the edge of your guide shirt, making sure to cut a little bigger than the guide shirt. This will be your seam allowance and give you a little wiggle room.

It should look something like this. Next I cut around the existing neckline to make a new one.

I try to stay about 1/4 of an inch away from the ribbing.

I cut through both layers to give it symmetry and I am lazy. It gives the front and back a nice scoop neckline


Once the neckline is cut, you’ll want to turn your shirt inside out and line everything up. Once you do that, sew up the two side seams and you’re done! If you like a more finished/polished look you can use contrasting ribbing to finish your neckline and arms.

Now if this wasn’t your thing or you need to rework your shirts, never fear! Next up I’ll have a bunch of great ideas I found on the interwebs to help you find something. 🙂

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