Thursday, June 21, 2012

Refashioned: Banded Bottom Shirt

Banded bottom shirt
banded bottom white shirt DIY
I have this white shirt I really like. However, I bought it last summer right after I had baby #2, so I was a little larger in the waist area. And now, since I’m back to normal (yay!) the shirt was too big.

But only too big in the waist. The goal was to make it tighter.
IMG_5922refashioned banded bottom shirt

First, I tried to shirr the bottom. This was when I was learning to shirr, before I made all the discoveries I shared in this post about shirring and troubleshooting.
Not knowing how to shirr resulted in a lot of ripping. Which resulted in holes in my shirt.

Another problem: this shirt wasn’t really large enough around the bottom to shirr. It ended up too tight when I finally got the shirring right. So I tried to ONLY shirr the front. That made the side seams hit too far forward at my waist. So I had to rip out more beautifully gathered shirring. Grrrrrr.

So I decided to go with a banded bottom look. Because of the holes that resulted from failed shirring, I cut off the bottom 3" of the shirt.

I took a new piece of fabric and cut it to the width of my hips. The fabric I used was a stretch jersey cotton. I made mine 33” wide and about 8” wide. IMG_6138

I folded it into a tube and stitched the short edges together.

Then I folded the tube in half with the raw edges in the middle. I pinned the long raw edges with right sides together to the remaining shirt.

The band will have to stretch to match the shirt’s hem. When pinning, to make sure it stretches evenly, pin at the shirt’s seams first. Then find the midpoints of each the band and the shirt and match those two points. Continue finding the midpoints of the remaining fabric until you have enough pins placed to secure the band to the shirt.

The band was a little bit difficult to sew because the edges of the new jersey bottom kept rolling. But I prevailed (using a stretch stitch) and the shirt was completed.

Hopefully this helps you revive a shirt from your wardrobe. I’m not that happy with the color of the fabric (I thought it was white) but it has a bluish tint. Oh well.


  1. i actually LOVE that it is blue. i think that is what makes the shirt look great! (keep wearing it!)

    1. Thanks for the confidence boost!! I have been wearing it and really liking it!

  2. I kinda like the blue, it's nice. :-) Glad you could salvage the shirt after the shirring didn't work out; it's super cute! Thanks for linking this up at The Fun In Functional!

  3. I love this idea! That is my fav type of top, they cover imperfections well! Congrats on getting back to you normal size.I am working HARD on that right now.

    I love you blog, I am super glad that I found it today. I am your newest follower. I love finding new blogs like yours.

    Our blogs are a lot alike, it almost looks like I copied you LOL promise I didn't!

    If you are interested in looking at my blog

  4. Great update! It looks so much better!

  5. Great solution! I find a lot of tops in stores are really short right now. This would be good for those too. If you're looking for another place to share your sewing projects, come on over to Etcetorize. Would love to see you there~

  6. Great fix! I had my first adventure with shirring today, and it worked great--woohoo!

  7. Absolutely LOVE this idea. Just had Baby when I need to make my clthes smaller, I'm definatley gonna try this! Thx!

  8. Just saw this on Sew Much Ado. These are some of my favorite types of shirts (they make a postpartum belly so much more flattering :). I'll definitely have to try it! Thanks for sharing!


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