Winter here in NYC has been pretty mild so far, but based on what my friends in the Midwest are going thru I suspect I will be getting a healthy dose of it here in no time. Which is why I am more than a little grateful to have moved into my new space while the weather was nice last week.
Up until this point, although I have been living almost totally in NYC, it was in a furnished sublet which has kept the majority of my personal items back in Indiana. This effected me more deeply than I anticipated, but everyday I would imagine what it would feel like to have the combined buzz that I get from being here, out and about in the city with the deep satisfaction I get from being home in my own space with all of my favorite things. Now that dream is reality and the result is even better than I imagined it. And although I technically downsized a great deal by leaving my Midwest Apartment and studio space, I see it more as a HUGE upgrade to have the energy, resource and creative souls of this city just outside my door. Life makes sense to me here.
So now that I’ve got everything in it’s place I am anxious to get back into a rhythm of creating and recreating new designs and treasures. Today I started with a very basic vintage sweatshirt that I’ve been hanging on to because of it’s perfect faded grey color and it’s overly worn feel.
I’ve worn it oversized a few times but that’s just not a great look for me. So I made it a new, simple shape to still feel comfortable and casual but a little more flattering.
This is a really simple remake for something that you only need to alter slightly and will work for a knit sweater, tunic or t-shirt also.
*remove sleeves – it makes for a nicer fit in the end if you separate the sleeves from the body and adjust them independently. (Unless you prefer to make a bat wing style sleeve then you can leave them on)
* remove wasteband- this also ensures a nice custom look when you’re all done.
* turn the body inside out and put it on pinning each side equally to your preferred fit- by turning it inside out your markings will be right where you need to them stitch up your new shape. Pinning something while on is the ultimate in DIY and sometimes can turn out a little wonky, so once you’ve marked and pinned where you like it, take it back off and make sure it is neat and even before sewing it up.
for myself I took approx 2″ off each side and left a 6 1/2″ opening for the sleeve to reattach. This brought the original shoulder seam down to almost a t-shirt length on my arm and I added the sleeve to it from this point to keep them extra long. But you could trim the extra to make a normal shoulder seam and have really cute 3/4 sleeves.
* Once you’ve finished the side seams then turn the sleeves inside out and lay them flat. use the new measurement of the opening as the same for the top of the sleeve and mark a straight line down to meet at the wrist and stitch.
* For the waist hem bring the two side seams together so it is folded in half the width wise. Start a cut in the center of the from 4″ from the bottom curving down as you go to end up at the original edge. Try to keep the cut gradual and between the front seams so you don’t over scoop and end up with a weird tail in the back.
*Now pin your sleeves and waste band back in their places and stitch them on right sides together.
At this point you can embellish it how ever you’d like or just leave it plain. Either way I’d love to see your variations.