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T-shirt Alterations

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I was wondering if anyone knew how to alter tees? I have a shirt that i love by FreshJive but when i bought it the size was bigger than i thought. Anyone know how to alter a tee so i can wear it without looking like a wannabe gangsta with a 50XL white tee.

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I dont know about that, but I have been known to take in tee's and tanks just in the waist cause I have a tiny waist, and I dont like the weird fit I get around there if I dont sometimes, but I only have to take in the side, just a little, I dont know about taking in the whole thing

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theres a ton of topics on this

you can just simply take the sides in as much as you need, if its too wide around the chest too then you need to sew all the way to the sleeves. just follow the original cut and make it narrower.

or take it somewhere to get tailored, would probably cost around $15

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This is the main reason why Im trying to get into sewing.

I saw this one site where all they did was turn it inside out, took a shirt that fit right, placed it on top lining up the collars, drew around it with chalk (it was a black tshirt), cut with scissors, and then sewed the entire thing back up. Didnt mess with the sleeve stitching or collar or anything.

Just remember to give a little space so you can actually sew it together when you cut the shirt up.

Im not gonna pay an extra 15 bucks for every tshirt I get (nothing fits my body:( )

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if you need to do it often then its a good idea to learn to do it of course

I wouldnt cut it at first though, you can just turn it inside out, figure out how much you want to take in (draw for example, as you mentioned) and then just sew it and after that cut the excess part off. that way it will get aligned properly etc. sew the seams twice (you can leave a couple of mm in between) or after cutting you can use the zigzag type thing and sew over the edge with it.

think I'll take some pics next time I do something to make a short guide since many people here seem to be interested in this :)

oh and as keri said, there are variations on this, you can go all the way to the armpit (moving towards the original seam at the end) or just take in from the lower part and fade it into the seam. this works if the hem of the shirt is too wide but it fits good on the top.

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I'm a pretty small guy and a lot of my tees don't fit right so I've been wanting to do this for a while. I'm sure I could figure this out but having a guide with me would make it easier.

Thanks in advance.

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what i did on a couple of my baggier t-shirts was just turn it inside out and run the sewing machine from the bottom hem to the edge of the sleeve on both sides and then cut the excess material off. it's hard for me to find shirts that aren't baggy on me because i'm 6 ft and 170 lbs but with very solid legs (i play volleyball).

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I think the correct way if you're going to tapper the waist and sleeves is to remove the sleeves and move them in clooser together. Also one important thing to remember is that the armpit has a sort of fold to it(extra allowance for when you lift up your arm) don't just put a t-shirt over is and sew without taking this into account.

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I think the correct way if you're going to tapper the waist and sleeves is to remove the sleeves and move them in clooser together. Also one important thing to remember is that the armpit has a sort of fold to it(extra allowance for when you lift up your arm) don't just put a t-shirt over is and sew without taking this into account.

i only do that if i'm going to be changing the fit of a shirt a lot. if it's just a medium that's a little too lose (i wear medium) and i want a slimmer fit i just run the machine over it.

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basically you can just run over the armpit too as long as you follow the original shape, that way there wont be any weird fitment with the sleeves etc. but if you just take the side in then its even easier as you said.

I have to do a couple of shirts so I'm gonna take some pics and post them for those who are not sure what to do :)

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here is a little tutorial on how to do major size alteration of a T-shirt--like going from XL to med. as some previous posters noted, for this type of drastic size change, it's necessary to alter the sides, the sleeves, as well as the shoulder width, which requires removal and reattachment of the sleeves. i've done several T-shirts this way and i took some photos of the latest one i did. it's not super difficult, but it does take some practice. i recommend practicing with a shirt you don't care too much about.

alteringTstep1.jpg

Step 1. turn the shirt you want to alter (the white one here) inside out and lay as flat as possible, but without stretching it. make sure the shoulder area is straight--sometimes the sides won't be perfectly straight but that doesn't matter. lay a shirt that fits you well on top of this to use as a template, aligning the collars and shoulders. trace the outlines of the sides and bottom of the template shirt using a pencil. make the outline slightly larger than the shirt to allow for stitching and reinforcement, and make sure the sides and bottom of the outline are straight.

step2.jpg

Step 2. use a sewing machine to run over the side lines. i use a perfect stitch hand held machine which cost about $19 on ebay.

alteringTstep3.jpg

Step 3. cut the extra material from the sides up to the armpit, leaving ~1 cm beyond the stitch.

alteringTstep4.jpg

Step 4. fold up the bottom at the traced line. stitch the hem all the way around the shirt, at about 1.5 cm from the folded bottom. cut off extra material leaving ~ 1 cm past the stitch.

alteringTstep5-1.jpg

Step 5. on the body of the shirt, mark the position of the template shoulder seam (point A), keeping the collars aligned. draw a curve from this mark to the armpit (point B), following the curve of the old sleeve seam. on the sleeve of the shirt, mark the position of the template shoulder seam again (point C), but this time aligning the sleeve ends. draw a curve from this mark to the bottom part of the sleeve, again following the curve of the old sleeve seam. now, cut off the sleeves approximately right between the two drawn lines.

alteringTstep6-1.jpg

Step 6. reattach the sleeve by aligning the drawn curves to form the new sleeve seam. if you've done this properly, the edges of both sides should fold up and meet, as shown in the picture. stitch all the way around the sleeve seam.

alteringTstep7-1.jpg

Step 7. mark the sleeve opening size of the template shirt (arrow) and draw a straight line from this mark to the armpit. stitch over this line and cut away excess material.

alteringTstep8-1.jpg

Step 8. the shirt is almost finished. reinforce seams by stitching one more time, or by hand sewing over key stress points (red dots). trim away all excess material.

The final product:

alteringTstep9.jpg

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