Ok, I'm trimming my shirt(s)

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by chrisc, Apr 25, 2006.

  1. chrisc

    chrisc Well-Known Member

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    I have a couple shirts that I brought real cheap during a clearence sale. While I like them, a couple are a bit wide in the waist. One especially; when it's tucked it feels like I'm wearing a large garbage bag. A lot of you would obviously take it to a tailor, tell him to trim it down and boom! done. However I'm still a broke college student, so I decided to just do it myself. Now, does anybody know how to do it correctly? I know how to operate a sewing machine, I'm just not sure how to go at it. I'm thinking that I as cut what I want in the waist (which I will cut on the sides), I will gradually converge until until I'm at the armhole. Here's a picture that might help: (And no that's not my shirt.. [​IMG] ) [​IMG] Thank you guys!
     


  2. retronotmetro

    retronotmetro Senior member

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    Side seams can be very hard to get right. I think you are better off sewing darts in the back than trying a side seam manipulation. Either way, try basting the shirt the way you think it should fit, then examine the overall effect on how the shirt falls, especially with regard to how the side seams fall, how the shirt closes, etc.
     


  3. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Senior member

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    Your diagram is correct. Metro is correct that darts would be better as they can always be removed if you take in too much.

    Before making your marks, pin the part you intend to cut out and try on the shirt to make sure it isn't too tight.

    Then be sure to add back on enough for seam allowances (1/4") before cutting.

    Finally, don't go all the way to the armhole. Stop about 1/2" below it ... or else continue a bit out onto the sleeve. The armhole joint where shirt front, shirt back, sleeve front, and sleeve back all come together is a difficult place to start and/or stop sewing.
     


  4. Margaret

    Margaret Senior member

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    Wow, Alexander Kabbaz didn't simply faint from mortification -- maybe you're not completely nuts to attempt this.
    [​IMG]

    'Before' and 'After' pics, please.
     


  5. hobo

    hobo Well-Known Member

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    I think you will also have to think about the contour between the front and back sides unless it is a shirt that you never wear untucked
     


  6. stach

    stach Senior member

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    I agree. If the shirts have tails, you will wind up with a strange hem.
     


  7. Freddy Vandecasteele

    Freddy Vandecasteele Senior member

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    What fabric is that shirt?
    If it is knit make sure you use the correct needle,Small ball point,and do not use a too small stich,
    Good luck,
    Freddy Vandecasteele
     


  8. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Senior member

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    Wow, Alexander Kabbaz didn't simply faint from mortification -- maybe you're not completely nuts to attempt this.
    [​IMG]

    'Before' and 'After' pics, please.


    I'm an entrepreneur, first and foremost. Nothing beats initiative:
     


  9. tiger02

    tiger02 Militarist

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    Darts are easier, but screw it, go for the whole shebang. Credit J (I think) for this technique:

    Shirt right-side out
    -Mark where you want new seam to be
    -Cut 1/4" outside new seam
    -Sew just inside, 3/16" outside new seam

    Shirt inside-out
    -Sew on new seam

    You will end up with a much cleaner finish than just sewing in the new seam. Sorry if the instructions are unclear, several tailoring threads were lost in the crash.

    Tom
     


  10. Cantabrigian

    Cantabrigian Senior member

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    As someone who tried something similar if you are going for a very trim fit, when you pin the shirt, take some very deep breaths. The place I messed up the most was around the bottom of the rib cage...

    Good luck!
     


  11. chrisc

    chrisc Well-Known Member

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    Awesome! Thank you gentlemen and Kabbaz for your sound advice. What a great community!

    I'll let you all know if I ruined my shirts. Thank you again.
     


  12. Cantabrigian

    Cantabrigian Senior member

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    Thank you gentlemen and Kabbaz...

    Good job with keeping those two distinct groups separate. [​IMG]
     


  13. Renault78law

    Renault78law Senior member

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    You sure you don't want darts? I'm no shirtmaker, but it seems like you're only taking fabric in at the hip. If you want the shirt to taper in at you midsection, you'd need a different alteration...
     


  14. chrisc

    chrisc Well-Known Member

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    Good job with keeping those two distinct groups separate. [​IMG]

    LOL. We all know what Kabbaz does, so I appreciate him leading me into the right direction. [​IMG]

    You sure you don't want darts? I'm no shirtmaker, but it seems like you're only taking fabric in at the hip. If you want the shirt to taper in at you midsection, you'd need a different alteration...

    I was thinking of darts as well, but I don't think I'm capable of pulling it off nicely. Come to think of it, maybe I should practice on some of those old t-shirts that I never wear before pulling this off. Practice makes perfect!

    Thanks again guys.
     


  15. trogdor

    trogdor Senior member

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    I was thinking of darts as well, but I don't think I'm capable of pulling it off nicely. Come to think of it, maybe I should practice on some of those old t-shirts that I never wear before pulling this off. Practice makes perfect!

    If it's a shirt of which you're fond, I'd go with darts; they're quite straightforward, but more importantly, they're a piece of piss to undo if you mess up. When I first put darts into a few shirts, it took me several attempts to get it right, but that's a luxury one has when no scissors are involved!
     


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