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Anyone dart or take in the sides of their own shirts?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Zackb911, Feb 9, 2011.

  1. Zackb911

    Zackb911 Senior member

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    Boston, MA
    -looking good from what we can see. Nothing beating that sense of accomplishment, eh? [​IMG]
    ...and no euro-hem for the pants I see, very daring [​IMG]

    Be sure to have that camera & mirror nearby when you try a couple of shirts... [​IMG]


    I've seen a few videos on the Euro hem, I'd do it for jeans but these were just my test pants. I think I may attempt some shirts today and if I do I'll try to take some pics.
     
  2. YoungAmerican

    YoungAmerican Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Anyone found a great video on flat felled seams? I have been a little confused by the text stuff I've read.
     
  3. either/or

    either/or Senior member

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  4. Mudhiker

    Mudhiker Senior member

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    After reading this thread I rummaged around in my storage unit and dug out my trusty $60 Brother sewing machine. (I used to have a nice heavy old $10 yardsale Singer but I think my sister has it now.) For anyone who doesn't sew very much, remember to put in a new needle frequently and oil your machine following the instructions in the manual after EVERY SINGLE USE. It will last a long time and your sewing will go better.

    Anyway, on to the shirt altering... I have a large number of 16.5x35 Lands' End dress shirts. They fit fine but have a lot of extra fabric. They do offer the "Tailored" fit which is a bit slimmer, but it usually costs several dollars more per shirt. Meh. I'm a cheapskate.

    Turned a shirt inside out and did a quick trial basting job with safety pins. Ideally I'd do a tapered 1-1.75 inch adjustment on sleeves and one inch down each side seam. But, after fiddling with pins all over the place I realized that my sewing machine has a nice little ruler built into it marking one inch. So a quick trip around each side of the shirt/sleeve at a one inch spacing, with a taper to the cuff, and shazaaam! Fit is much improved. I haven't even bothered with trimming out the extra seam allowance yet. Did one more shirt and it is also far far better. I could get more complicated and take more out of the sleeves, but one inch per side is so much better on these ~$20 shirts that I'm just going to do a bunch more the same way. Takes about 5 minutes per shirt once the bobbin is wound.

    Hooray!

    I wonder if something similar can be done with khakis? Slim up the legs a bit?
     
  5. either/or

    either/or Senior member

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    yes [​IMG]
     
  6. Pieceofsand

    Pieceofsand Senior member

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    Great thread. I want to buy a sewing machine now.

    My mom has one down in the basement and I open it one day in attempt to alter one of my old dress shirt. After seeing the complexity of the sewing machine, I quickly gave up.

    The sewing machine OP ordered from amazon looked fairly easy.

    I'm debating on whether to learn how to use the complex one I have, or buy an easy one like OP.

    OP, where did you learn how to use that beast if you don't mind me asking?
     
  7. unclesam099

    unclesam099 Senior member

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    I snagged the sewing machine out of the basement to do some pants, have had some great success with taking in the legs on those. Definitely going to try a shirt next.
     
  8. Mudhiker

    Mudhiker Senior member

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    yes [​IMG]

    I just slimmed the inseam on a pair of chinos by 1/2 inch. Once again experimented first using safety pins. One inch would have been just a bit too tight for mobility, 1/2 was just right. As with anything, attention to detail is important. I first ironed the inseam nice and flat and then marked the entire run with a fabric-marking crayon and a ruler. I used heavy-duty buttonhole thread and ran a careful, tight, straight stitch. Once again, the entire process took just a few minutes and resulted in a much improved fit. Cuffs can be a bit tricky. I cheated and tapered in from the cuffs so these trousers technically have a slight bit of flare, but it won't be noticeable. A real detail-freak would disassemble the cuff and then sew it back up after slimming, but I'm happy with the trousers as is. Now I need to tackle a pair of Dockers that have about half a yard too much fabric in them...
     
  9. blahman

    blahman Senior member

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    Just tried it on one of my old blousy Hawe and Curtis shirts and the fit turned out amazing across the body. Is there any way of shortening the sleeves without major surgery or use of sewing machine?

    Probably try and do all the other old shirts and maybe start old trousers as I found that it was quite an educational experience.
    And it really helps with online MTM shirt purchases.
     
  10. Zackb911

    Zackb911 Senior member

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    Location:
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    Great thread. I want to buy a sewing machine now.

    My mom has one down in the basement and I open it one day in attempt to alter one of my old dress shirt. After seeing the complexity of the sewing machine, I quickly gave up.

    The sewing machine OP ordered from amazon looked fairly easy.

    I'm debating on whether to learn how to use the complex one I have, or buy an easy one like OP.

    OP, where did you learn how to use that beast if you don't mind me asking?


    Just the quick start guide that came with it... I agree if going at it blind its confusing but once i did the step by step the learning curve was quick!
     

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