Self Assembly Required

DIY dressmaking + crafts with Emily

A chic chambray tee

I love chambray at the moment. I have no idea why… I must’ve picked up at least 3 new chambray denim shirts in the sales this year already! (And yes, slap on the wrist for buying RTW…)

I picked up a lovely piece of chambray during my latest trip to Paris. €20 for 3 metres isn’t bad right? Or at least it wasn’t pre-Brexit anyway! (Awkward pause…)

I planned on making two things with the amount of fabric there – a long sleeve playsuit and a loose t-shirt.

I ended up making the tee first (and now I’m mildly worried I won’t have enough for the playsuit but I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it) and I used an old Simplicity pattern – Cynthia Rowley 1366. I’d used the blouse pattern just once before in a funky grid print fabric.

I made some pattern alterations with my new shirt. First I shortened the sleeve by 3 inches. I also planned to attached two panels to the lower edge to add length and create a side split simultaneously.

If anyone else wants to do that, it’s super easy – measure and cut a rectangle the same width as your bodice and double the length of how much you want to add plus seam allowances. (Do the same for the front and back pieces). I wanted to add an extra 2″ so I cut my panel 5″ wide and used a 1/2″ seam allowance. Fold each panel in half lengthways and sew the short sides down. Turn the rectangle out and press. Now match up the pressed edges to the side seams of the bodice right sides together and sew. I pressed and topstitched over the seam. 

I love how the tee hangs and it feels lovely too! I managed to get a better length on the top with the added panels – I’d always thought the grid print one was very slightly on the short side. The only thing I don’t like is how easily the fabric wrinkles! This top is going to have to be ironed a lot!

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  1. Cool top. The panel and split is a nice feature. I have that pattern too but haven’t made it yet. Love both your versions!

  2. I like this new idea (for me anyway) of making tshirts out of woven fabric instead of knits. Your top looks good, and I agree that what you’ve done on the bottom improves the design. Nice!

    1. Thanks! I’ve only made a couple of woven tees but I really like them. I think they hang a little better than in jersey. Plus they won’t stretch out over time!

  3. This looks great, your topstitching is lovely.
    Were you near Sacré Coeur in the fabric district? ISN’T IT AMAZING?
    Also, your hair is so fantastic, I’ve always wanted mine to be like that but I’ve never *quite* had the confidence!

    1. Yes! I got the fabric from one of the coupon shops there. Love love love shopping round there!
      Yeah, thanks! Finally gone from blonde to a silvery grey which was my original plan when I dyed it blonde a couple years ago! I’ve actually forgotten what I look like with my native hair colour…

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