Tuesday, 21 April 2009

T-shirt making adventures

I have decided to delve into the world of making my own tshirts. It all started when one of my most worn singlets finally started to wear through and I was concerned that one day the stitching would give way at work when I was least expecting. Also, being a not-so-financially-flush student, I can't always afford the new and trendy clothes that I want all the time. So I decided to make my own.

I cut apart my singlet top and used it as the pattern. It fits so well, so I thought I may as well use it. I found some great quality stretch knit fabric for cheaps at a vintage fabric sale at the Camberwell Market. I will also freezer paper stencil a design on the front. In all, my tshirt is going to cost about $2 in materials to make.

However, it's going to cost me more...

As I have previously mentioned, I am completely enamored with my overlocker. It doesn't do cover stitch, but I have my overlocker and sewing machine set up side by side so I can lock the edges with the overlocker, and sew them flat with straight stitch on my machine. It was all working fine.

I overlocked the edges for the neck and arm holes, then made the binding for them. Sewing the binding on the neckline and armholes was a b****. Attempting to make my own tshirt has made me realise the effort that goes into making the humble tee. They are an essential part of daily life and we want them cheap. It makes me wonder what the hidden costs are.

However, when it came to sewing the two sides together, the tension wasn't so great. The stitching was pulling apart. It looks as though there's something amiss with the left needle as the right left stitch isn't catching. Maybe the timing is out. Time to take it for a service...

So my $2 tshirt is now going to cost me >$70! Oh well, I guess that's all a part of home sewing...! This machine hasn't cost me much so far, so I don't mind. Although, without my overlocker on hand, sewing just seems less appealing. It's hard going back now I've had a taste of what it can do.


randi---i have to say said...


I read a book called the $64 Tomato about a gardener's quest to grow the perfect garden. Of course, it ends up costing him a ton of money, but it makes him happy to do it.

Best wishes with the shirt!

Jenaveve said...

You're a brave girl - knits are an area I 'had a go at' once and had a similar experience. But I'm determined to have another crack sometime in the near future. If it works out I'll let you know :)