Essentially I need help with editing a T-Shirt please. I have an American Apparel unisex XL T-shirt that I would like to add a boat neckline to and a corset back to it. I fit a medium to large in the Ameican Apparel style, erring closer to large.
What I'm looking for is written help on how to make it how I envision it. I would like it to be close to 'authentic corset', just meaning that I'd like to use eyelets and ribbon for the corseting and not that rip and tie style people are enamored with. I'd also like for it to have a 'modesty panel'. That essentially means I just want something to be built into the shirt to go behind the corseting and not my bare back and bra band lol. I have the extra room in the shirt but I also have a XL scrap black T-shirt that can be used. I'm fairly sure how to do the boat neckline and all but if people have any tips on how to do that properly or how to have it well done, that'd be awesome :)
I have beginning/moderate sewing skills with access to a Brother computerized sewing machine, overlock machine and a mum with a fair bit more of skill to help;P Any tips, tricks or even step-by-step explanation would be amazing. Thanks for reading :)
1.) Check out the Alabama Stitch Book for a sweet t-shirt-based corset pattern. Perhaps the "authentic" look you crave comes from shaped panels, not lacings. This pattern has beautiful shaped panels. (A contributer just posted a different Alabama Chanin t-shirt over on the main blog.)
2.) Regarding the boat neck: start small and conservative-like - they tend to expand (ie droop) much larger than one thinks they might. (If you use the above-mentioned corset pattern, I'm not sure this will be possible.) I've not found a way to correct this droopiness, but I don't work with knits much. Perhaps someone else here has.
For example, just cutting the collar off might drop all of the fabric into a fairly boat-like shape.
3.) A modesty panel is generally (not always) just a panel stitched up one side of the corset lacings. You wouldn't need one if you placed the eyelets to each side of a CB panel(s) and simply pulled them a bit in with ribbon. The fabric would bunch in a little, which may or may not create any problems.
4.) Eyelets (small ones, not grommets) might work due to the thin nature of the material, although you still may wish to stabilize those edges or risk having the areas with the eyelets pull into a scalloped shape or rip over time. Experiment with different stabilizers, t-shirt knit scraps until you find some thing that works to your liking.
Again, someone who has worked more consistently with knits may have different ideas.
completely agree with joann, and am glad i read her reply before posting. the alabama stitch book has a wonderful t-shirt corset, and her other books have other t-shirt modifications (and patterns) that you may find useful as base patterns for your own work.
i especially agree that you may want to look into a good knit interfacing--try fashion sewing supply for a great option--to stabilize where you might put the grommets. i have put grommets into t-shirt fabric, with very mixed results. often, especially in an AA XXL t-shirt (my favorite base), the fabric is not really meant to deal with that kind of stretch. i've also tried eyelets, with similarly mixed results.