When I began thinking about what types of patterns I wanted to sew I started out by buying New Look 6598 and New Look 6894. I was seeking to replicate a v-neck button front sleeveless shirt with princess seams which no longer fit. New Look 6598 has long contour darts and 6894 has princess seams.
I’ve never gotten around to using most of my patterns. Instead, I’ve been more likely to head for the refashion pile for my creations. So this time I decided to try a hybrid.
I couldn’t resist this XL men’s rayon shirt at the little neighborhood thrift store on their half-off Saturday. It was only $2.50! I had plenty of material to work with.
I cut the shirt apart at the seams and collar, removed the pocket, and took New Look 6598 out of the envelope to use the pattern pieces. Since I would be using the same button placket, all that needed to be done was to stitch up the sides, cut a new v-shaped neckline, add darts, and facings.
I marked and pinned the two front vertical contour darts on my front pieces for my pattern size and held it up to me. They were not directly centered, so I pinched were I wanted them to be and sewed them. I made bias binding for the armholes from the sleeves (instead of using the facing from the pattern) , and used the collar pieces from the shirt for the neck facing. I turned the bias to the armhole wrong side. I made 1and 1/2 inch facing for the back of the neck and the v-neckline down to the button placket already on the original shirt. I had to cut the v-neck to work with the already existing button placement.
I understitched the facing, but later topstitched it as well because I wanted it to stay down and and add stability to the neckline.
I had several buttons left over from the shirt so I decided to make simple shoulder tabs or epaulets using the hem of the sleeves.
I also adjusted the shirt for length. I kept the side slits from the pattern, which I needed to add ease at the hips. I finished my seams with a clean finish: turning and straight stitching.
Did I really need to use the pattern to refashion this shirt? No, I ended up improvising, and I had to partially draft my own facings, but I did use the instructions to help me understand more about the construction.
This shirt has a sporty feel to it, so I paired it with shorts which also have a button tab and my sturdy, thick-soled walking sandals.