Sunday, 25 February 2018

Plan B Tee // Blush Knit Basic

Blush cloned RTW tee via SEWN sewing blog.

For a while I've been meaning to up my basics with a few staple tees. I've toiled a couple but have found myself short on fitting patience of late so I've put off the alterations needed. Enter this basic scoop neck tee with sleeve cuffs and curved hem. It's a clone of a very tired holey RTW tee which I really liked (and which oddly still went around my ever expanding belly!).

The (viscose?) fine 't-shirting' from Fabricland at around £4p/m was intended for a simply boxy Hemlock tee by Grainline Studio but I had a little 'moment' whilst cutting and found myself short of fabric for the second sleeve. I'm usually exceptionally stingy with fabric and manage some pretty spectacular jigsaw layouts to ensure I can get the very most out of my yardage but not this time. I threw the fabric in the corner ...a problem for another day.

[NB. If you have a local fabricland and are tempted, note that this fabric wrinkles and does not press! Even a warm iron left shiny scorch marks when tested so this one gets a light tumble then is left to air dry on a hanger which does the trick nicely.]

The next day it occurred to me that the aforementioned favourite tee complete with major pilling and increasing collection of holes should finally be sacrificed to create a pattern to enable me to make up more, and that the pieces would very likely fit within the ready cut hemlock due to the difference in fit. Winner!

Blush cloned RTW tee via SEWN sewing blog.

If you've not cloned a worn out RTW garment before it's super easy! Here's how I did it.
  1. Cut along the seam lines to separate the pieces (removing all seam allowances/finishes).
  2. Cut down the centre front & back to create a pattern piece to lay on the fold.
  3. Carefully lay them flat and roughly trace around each piece.
  4. Use a french curve to clean up the straight lines and curves.
  5. Check the side seam and shoulder seam lengths will match -if not adjust slightly.
  6. Add on your chosen seam and hem allowance.
I drafted a neckband (at 85% of the neck opening measurement + seam allowance) instead of turning and stitching the neckline. I applied and topstitched this with a simple straight stitch as the neckline is scooped enough not to need stretch. I also pivoted the front bodice at the underarm to add a little extra belly room. Whilst I'm not 100% sold on how it hangs free under bump, I think the drape will make this totally wearable afterwards which was the goal. Had I fitted it more there I think it would sag and look unsightly postpartum.

Neckband detail. Cloned RTW tee via SEWN sewing blog.

There's always a little trial and error with knit fabrics but this one's drape was a good match. There are a few things I'd tweak just a fraction next time, namely to reduce the sleeve cuff width plus a little excess at the shoulders (always those damn shoulders!) and add a little length at the side seams shortening the depth of the curved hem -but I'm pretty darn happy with it as is!

Aside from wearing it as a layering piece, I quite like it simply knotted over a waisted skirt.

Blush cloned RTW tee via SEWN sewing blog.

Blush cloned RTW tee via SEWN sewing blog.

Hooray for basics. I plan to make up a quick trial in a more stable cotton jersey next to gauge the change in the shoulder and bust fit to perhaps use as a block to adjust my other tee patterns. I'll keep you posted!

x Happy Sewing!


  1. It looks like such a great staple, I really like the colour! Tshirts are so versatile, yours look great with both the skirt and the shirt, and they still look like completely different outfits!

    1. I'm definitely not a pink gal in general but I think it makes a good neutral. I'm trying really hard to keep maternity garments to an absolute minimum so versatile is also good! :)