Thursday, November 3, 2011

Gathered-Sleeve Toddler Tunic with Pockets! (from repurposed women's clothes, of course!)

I am so in love with how this project turned out.  I wasn't even planning on doing any sewing (other than finishing up Halloween costumes), but the hubs headed out overnight for a fishing trip and asked, "What will you be doing while I'm gone, sewing?"  So I thought I might as well.  I only stayed up a half an hour past my sewing curfew to finish it.


I was inspired to make this top because a.   I saw a tutorial for a darling gathered sleeve dress on pinterest, b. the girl LOVES her some pockets these days and c. I had scraps from a hoodie I took apart for two other projects, including pockets and trim.

Yes, it has been crumpled in the bottom of a drawer for  months.  Is that a problem?
So when I found this old teal shirt of mine, I knew I had to put the two together (LOVE this color combo) and puff up those sleeves, baby.
Look out, Anne Shirley, my mom knows how to make puffed sleeves!

I started by cutting the front of the tunic out of the front of the shirt.  I used a dress that fits Iris well as a template, and just laid it on top of the shirt.  I cut out the front piece first, then laid it onto the back to cut out the back piece.  I'm pretty imprecise with this stuff, just making sure the armholes are the same size and the neckline is going to join together--you could measure if you want to get all perfect about it.

Front panel laid out on the rest of the original shirt, preparing to cut out back piece.
Next I attached the ribbed trim from the sweatshirt to the front and back panels of the tunic.  I just laid the trim along the bottom of the tunic, right sides together, and stitched straight across, about 1/4 inch seam allowance.

The upper panel:  trim and panel laying right sides together showing the seam.
Lower panel:  What the finished piece looks like.
Then I placed the panels right sides together and sewed the shoulder seams.  The only tricky thing here was lining up the neckline,since the seam from the neckline "trim" should match up.  Then I pinned the sides, making sure they lined up at the armpit and the seam where the trim was sewn on, and sewed straight down both sides.  I don't really have pictures of this part, sorry!

I cut the sleeves out of the middle part of the original sleeve.  Normally, I would cut the sleeve down the seam before making my new sleeve, but since I wanted wide sleeves to allow for the gather I just left the seam intact, so my new sleeve is the same width as the sleeve on the original shirt.  I also remembered to cut it short, so I had room for the cuff I would be adding to the wrists.
My short fat sleeve
I don't think I would do it this way in the future.  It makes gathering the wrist and attaching the wrist cuff...not impossible, but definitely more irritating than it needed to be.

Then was the fun part--gathering the sleeves.  I followed this tutorial for gathering the tops of the sleeves, which worked out well.  Then for the wrists, I just did a basting stitch with my machine's tension set high (and no backstitching), one row only, then pulled on the bobbin threads to tighten it until it was the same width as my cuffs.

Gathered sleeve ready to be attached at armhole and cuff

I attached the cuff first, in the same way I would attach a sleeve to a garment--I put the right-side-out cuff inside of the inside-out sleeve, with the raw edges both facing out, then pinned and sewed around the sleeve.  In this case (and attaching the sleeve, too) I just had to make sure my seam was wide enough to hide the basting stitch for the gathering.

After the sleeves were attached (and I trimmed off ALL of those loose threads from gathering), I was done!

In love.
It was so hard for me to wait until the next morning to see it on her.

I love pockets!
And I love my brother!

1 comment:

  1. This is a total WIN! I adore it - the pockets are everything. Great color combo, too. You just can't stay away from that sewing machine, woman. Thank goodness for the rest of us you're so productive! ;)


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.