My First T-Shirt Surgery

When was it? Last year? Anyway, some time ago, I got the idea that I could make t-shirts with neat designs, and started a CafePress store to that end. I made a keen design that was reminiscent of a late-70’s era tee my mom had:

So, I ordered myself a 2XL jersey with my design on it. And, when it arrived, I thought it was cool.

Then I tried it on.

OMG. I could wear it as a nightshirt. (And I did, on occasion.) I hung it in my closet, rarely to be seen again.

Until now.

When Sheryl took me on Shopping Spree Part One, she showed me a “fashionable tee” she had in her closet, and told me about the people who do t-shirt surgery to make their big, boxy tees into chic and, well, fashionable tees.

It took me a week or so, but I began to resent the oversized tees I own that are too cool to thrift, but too baggy to wear comfortably anymore. (Who’da thunk it?) So, I went to the t-shirt surgery LJ community, snooped around a while, and decided to go for it.

I didn’t have the CafePress jersey in mind as my test subject at first, but it presented itself after only a moment of closet-searching.

Look at this thing. It’s *huge* on meβ€”and that’s saying something.

I chose a new shirt that fits me well, and used it as a template, tracing around it and then sewing on the lines. Good grief, though, look at how *huge* that shirt is!

Voila! I took a few inches off the width and the length, and added a little zig-zag stitch to the bottom for that finished-yet-unfinished look. (Actually, it’s really because I’m new to the whole sewing thing and didn’t know how to properly sew a hem into the bottom of my shirt.) I had contemplated shortening the sleeves, but decided to leave them for now.

Here’s another view of the finished shirt. My slightly surly look is due to having argued with the digital camera for over half a dozen exposures.

Now all I have to do is get rid of the spare tire around my middle, and my shirts will fit even better *without* surgery.

(Next in line for various stylistic surgeries and possible home-brewed silkscreening: my bevy of RCC shirts!)

10 thoughts on My First T-Shirt Surgery

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  1. heh. yeah, i can’t bring myself to get rid of them… but i don’t have anywhere to wear them. and i don’t need grungies very often, so… *shrug*

  2. oh, yeah — you’d have even more colors than me, too! i have… *checking closet* the original grey and dark blue, then the burgundy and tan, then the orange and the hunter green with the embroidered logo, and a cream and a burgundy polo with the embroidered logo.

  3. that’s cute!! i love it!! the sleeves do still look big, though, maybe you could make them a little slimmer (so they’re more smooth down the arms) and taper the ends a bit. hmmmm πŸ˜‰ the possibilities are endless! πŸ˜€

  4. yeah, i wasn’t sure how much i could slim down the arms, and since it was my first surgery, i was afraid to do too much at once. i may putz with it some more, though…

  5. i was thinking i could try it on inside out, then pin the sleeves to the right width while it’s on, then *carefully* remove and sew.

    i don’t know that i’ll wear it in public yet, though… that spare tire is still too obvious. maybe once i lose another inch or two around the waist.

  6. so you’ll post it on the internet for hundreds of thousdands, but you wont wear it to the quickie mart for a total of 15 people? πŸ˜‰

  7. d00d. i am *so* holding in my stomach in both of those ‘after’ pictures. i can’t walk around for an entire afternoon like that.

  8. hey,

    i saw your post on the live journal t-shirt surgery community and i wanted to tell you that i really lovey your work in photography. there is something really still about the photographs, but they still achieve this isolated moment of action. really, really beautiful work. I love the one of your father and then the others you had in smaller boxes the woman and her dog and the baby. really nice composition and lighting!! really beautiful too!! hope the shirts are going well for you.