Do you dream of the PERFECT tee shirt?
Tee shirts are a staple of my wardrobe. I have, probably the same range of options in y dresser drawer that you have: long sleeve, short sleeve, printed, graphic, embellished, some with buttons, others with bows or ruffles. Tee shirts have come a long way over the years, from resembling a men’s undershirt to acting as a core for our wardrobes.
Which means, as dressmakers, we should have EXACTLY the tee shirts we want! We should be able to determine how snug or loose they are, how long the sleeves are, whether they have collars or cuffs or ruffles. We should get to choose the quality of fabric we want, so we know they won’t fall apart after three washes. We should feel good about the circumstances under which they’re made–not a cheap, fast-fashion tee but something we’ve invested thought and time into, that we feel good wearing and good ABOUT wearing. We get to say, “Thanks, I made it myself!”
This video series covers the ALL key skills for making a CUSTOM TEE SHIRT PATTERN so that you can do exactly that! We begin with the techniques of creating a pattern from paper and pencil, sew us a staple crew neck tee shirt, and then adapt that pattern to SEVEN different tee shirt styles.
Tee shirts for every season!
As a League member, you’ll have access to every video FOREVER, so you can make all the styles of tee shirt in a row, or you can dip in and out as your tastes and time allow. Tee shirts take very little yardage, and are an excellent way to refine your skills sewing knit fabrics.
We begin the series by covering the basics of drafting a custom pattern, including pattern drafting supplies and tools, plus a list of books & online resources to shed light on every corner of this key sewing skill. Pattern drafting is for EVERYONE who sews their own garments, at ANY level–it’s the skill that allows you to look at your own body, as it is right now, and evaluate where a paper pattern needs to be drawn to fit YOU (not the other way around).
Once we cover the core skills of paper, pencil, and rulers, we dive into a discussion of how to measure our bodies so we get accurate results, and then we draft a basic crew neck tee shirt made to fit you exactly the way YOU want a tee shirt to fit.
BONUS! The skills we cover work for ALL bodies, so if you’re not a tee shirt lover but someone in your family is? They’re about to have a whole lot of options. I use these exact step-by-steps to make tees for my children, and they all get worn and worn and worn out–the highest form of flattery for a dressmaker!
Variations on the tee shirt theme
Once we have the basics down, new videos arrive on FRIDAYS in the series. One of the many benefits of League membership is our SERIES format that allows you to see an overview of an entire video series and work through it sequentially–you’ll even be able to easily locate any series you’ve already started under your account, where you can save your place for later & pick up right where you left off.
Our Perfect Tee Shirt video series includes step-by-step video guides for each of these super fun variations:
- a crew neck tee
- a scoop neck tee
- a v-neck tee
- a keyhole neckline, both front and back
- a Peter Pan collar
- a pointed knit collar
- a henley opening
- puffed sleeves, long and short
- bell sleeves
- cuffed sleeves
- a tee with a peplum
- a tee with a gathered neckline
Through a combination of archived lessons from my Patternmaking e-course, brand-new videos created just for the League, printable PDF guides, and step-by-step photos, we’re going to spend the summer sewing the tee shirt of your DREAMS. This skill-building series is the PERFECT place to use knits you’ve been saving up, to build skills for larger sewing projects, to hone your pattern alteration skills for other pattern designs, and to show off your finishes!
LEAGUE MEMBERS: sign in and use the button below to navigate to the landing page for the Perfect Tee Shirt series, or find it in the sidebar with our SEARCH function.
NOT YET A LEAGUE MEMBER? Scroll down for the link to join!
New to sewing with knit fabrics? You can do this ENTIRE series with only your sewing machine! Visit the Sewing Knits Without A Serger series, included in your League membership to brush up on your knit fabric skills as you dive into tee shirts!
Click below to JOIN the League of Dressmakers!
I am trying an experiment, since I do not have extensive experience with garment sewing….I have tried to trace a t-shirt I love that I own, purchased a Simplicity pattern (and am tracing it onto medical exam paper using the design and style ruler) and I took my measurements to make my own pattern. I was hesitant to just jump in and make my own pattern since I never even used a style and design ruler before in my life. You make it look so simple, but I really need to practice before I just start drawing lines…..
I am interested to see how the 3 different patterns align….
I can already see some benefits and pitfalls of each.
1. The trace the actual already made shirt allowed me to see the hemline curve, the transition from bust to hip across the waist line in a realistic way and see how the sleeves will actually attach to my shirt
2. The trace the Simplicity pattern, was hard to actually trace, my hand is not super steady and since I lack experience, I don’t know where I am going from point to point without looking and then having to reposition my paper. However that pattern has the sleeve in laid flat pattern piece not the folded in half on center pattern piece and that is different and good to see a different way.
3. The measure myself and start drawing lines, well, that the measuring is completed ( and it is what it is) but the drawing is just in my mind so far…. and now it’s Monday already (this pesky job I have to pay my bills keeps getting in the way of my sewing…..hahaha…)
Wish me luck and persistance….
[…] part of the Design and Sew Your Perfect Tee Shirt series, this peplum tee is a chance to work on making small alterations to a pattern piece that have a big […]
[…] fast once you have the basics down. Which gave me the idea to create a series of videos for the League of Dressmakers: what if we take a basic tee shirt pattern, and then make small tweaks until we have a wardrobe of […]