While away at college, I came across a shirt on modcloth that I instantly fell in love with. I favorited it and saved a picture of it just in case it disappeared. It went out of stock and is no longer online anywhere that I can find, and my picture of it that I saved won't load here, so I have only brain waves to send out, comparing the shirt to my version of it. The modcloth shirt was slightly sheer, with increasingly deep horizontal pleats and a black peter pan collar. It wasn't long before I was spending more time daydreaming about sewing this shirt than I was spending on classwork. When I went fabric shopping a few weeks ago this was the first thing I picked up. It's mint green chiffon and I'm not really sure how to wash it, but I'll ford that river when I get there.
I spend a good deal of time doing math to insure that the pleats worked out well. When I got around to doing the rest of the math, I decided it would be easier just to trace a tshirt that fit well. Note: bad idea. Ordinarily that might have been fine, but I used a knitted shirt. Knit stretches.
I've never been so precise before when sewing things. I measured each and every pleat to the 1/8th of an inch, every 2-3 inches across. Most of the front and back pleats ended up matching, and there's no strange drooping, so I'd say the extra effort was worth it.
Once I finished the pleats, I quickly sewed the front and back pieces together, to find that I could barely get the shirt on. I had to cut a slit into the back to get my head through the neck. It was extremely tight over my chest and lower half of my stomach, and it was short. The top pleat was supposed to be at armpit level, and instead flops uselessly around where the bottom of the collar lies. On any other project, this collection of problems would have been enough for the shirt to be wadded up in the bottom of my sewing box. I would've revisited it in a year, mangled it further, and then turned it into something useless. However, I'd been dreaming of this for too long and wasn't about to give up that easily.
I took narrow strips of the remnants to create 2-inch wide strips of pleating, and picked out all of the side stitching. Then I sewed my strips into the sides, adding a grand total of 2 inches, with seam allowances, to my shirt. I slipped it back on, to find that it fit nicely over my chest and hips, and ballooned out strangely in the middle. Maybe I am a girl after all. I went back in and took a half an inch back out on each seam where the ballooning was occurring, and that seemed to fix that problem. I neck hole I widened, and a snap made the extra slit into a loop that maybe could be on purpose, and is covered by the collar anyway. I decided I could live with the other problems.
And so, after a very long time, it is done. I added a removable collar that I drafted off of the neckline. I'm thinking about doing a tutorial on the collar, but I haven't decided if it should be over drafting your own collar, or specifics of sewing a peter pan collar.
My wonderful brother took pictures for me this time. He's pretty much awesome.