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Anyone dart or take in the sides of their own shirts?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Zackb911, Feb 9, 2011.

  1. Zackb911

    Zackb911 Well-Known Member

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    Boston, MA
    This is something I'd like to learn how to do properly for both dress and casual shirts. I have a 10" drop and most of my shirts, especially the casuals, could benefit from being taken in. I can't seem to find any good tutorials on the considerations and proper techniques to do it. Seems it would be cost effective skill to learn. So anyone here do it themselves?
     
  2. SpallaCamiccia

    SpallaCamiccia Well-Known Member

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    Between Pinkos land and the sanitarium.
    This is something I'd like to learn how to do properly for both dress and casual shirts. I have a 10" drop and most of my shirts, especially the casuals, could benefit from being taken in. I can't seem to find any good tutorials on the considerations and proper techniques to do it. Seems it would be cost effective skill to learn. So anyone here do it themselves?

    12 euros and 7 for darts chargues my taylor.
     
  3. Zackb911

    Zackb911 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    431
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    Oct 5, 2010
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    12 euros and 7 for darts chargues my taylor.

    I've heard here it runs $15-30 per shirt here, however, most of my shirts only run me $30 or so to begin with for J. Crew, Polo, Etc. so I'd rather learn to do it for free and a few minutes of my time. The only shirts I buy for ~$50+ are Nordstrom Trim fit or BB Extra Slim and they need nothing.

    So back to my original question... [​IMG]
     
  4. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Well-Known Member

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    Ive done it. It is sewing 101.
     
  5. Antonio Centeno

    Antonio Centeno Well-Known Member

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    Purchase "Shirtmaking" by David Coffin - if you're serious about doing it yourself this is a great step by step guide. I may at some point upload a video, but right now it's not in the top 100 of my to do list[​IMG]
     
  6. unclesam099

    unclesam099 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    466
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    Nov 18, 2010
    Location:
    SE PA, USA
    This is something I'd like to learn how to do properly for both dress and casual shirts. I have a 10" drop and most of my shirts, especially the casuals, could benefit from being taken in. I can't seem to find any good tutorials on the considerations and proper techniques to do it. Seems it would be cost effective skill to learn. So anyone here do it themselves?

    Have you searched on youtube? I've found it to be a decent resource. Would be interested if someone else had a good resource, as well. Preferrably not darts.
     
  7. Zackb911

    Zackb911 Well-Known Member

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    Oct 5, 2010
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    Have you searched on youtube? I've found it to be a decent resource. Would be interested if someone else had a good resource, as well. Preferrably not darts.
    I have and surprisingly found very little... What I did see was more towards womens shirts or darting T-Shirts. Seems there are sewing guides for nearly everything else. Thanks for the book recommendation. Is it limited to "shirtmaking" or does it also cover alterations to ready made shirts? I'll pick it up if it has some guides on the alterations!
     
  8. SpallaCamiccia

    SpallaCamiccia Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,364
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    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Between Pinkos land and the sanitarium.
    Purchase "Shirtmaking" by David Coffin - if you're serious about doing it yourself this is a great step by step guide. I may at some point upload a video, but right now it's not in the top 100 of my to do list[​IMG]

    I got the book here unread. I thought it was a bad purchase but might be not.
     
  9. either/or

    either/or Well-Known Member

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    the sandbox
  10. cptjeff

    cptjeff Well-Known Member

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    Yup. I've done it on a few shirts, and will be doing it to a few more when I get around to it. You pin it in place, make sure it fits, sew, double check, then cut off the excess fabric and fell the seam. It's pretty easy to do a basic job, getting it perfect will be a bit harder, so do a few shirts that you don't care much about before you start altering the ones you really like.

    Haven't done darting, I've just taken in the sides, but I doubt it would be that hard.
     
  11. chrisb0109

    chrisb0109 Well-Known Member

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    Minneapolis
    Yup. I've done it on a few shirts, and will be doing it to a few more when I get around to it. You pin it in place, make sure it fits, sew, double check, then cut off the excess fabric and fell the seam. It's pretty easy to do a basic job, getting it perfect will be a bit harder, so do a few shirts that you don't care much about before you start altering the ones you really like.

    Haven't done darting, I've just taken in the sides, but I doubt it would be that hard.


    Darting is much easier since it requires only one pass through the sewing machine for each dart. Making flat felled seams can get grueling.
     
  12. Xenon

    Xenon Well-Known Member

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    Jan 18, 2010
    I have done maybe a dozen of my shirts.

    Fairly easy but time consuming if you want to do a professional job.

    Start by pinning the shirt sideds the way you like it. I find also that if the sides need taking in so do the arms. After mark (with washable crayon) the pinned shirt at pin line.

    Remove pins and completely open side seems upto arms or beyond if you want tighter arms and/or scye. Cut fabric 0.5 inch outside of mark. Resew using the same type of seem (seem that folds fabric on itself so that edges are completely hidden- and then stitched). This is actually a double row of stitches . You first start by folding one edge of the fabric over the other (other lies flat) then you stitch where all the shirt lies outside of the sewing machine. The second row of stitch is where you fold the side that previously lay flat -this stitch therefore goes through the resulting 4 layers of fabric. Tough to explain properly with words but make sure you examine the side seem when you cut it open at the beginning

    You will probably have to redo the bottom edges as well so that they meet or curve properly.
     
  13. Zackb911

    Zackb911 Well-Known Member

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    Oct 5, 2010
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    Boston, MA
    Thanks guys I appreciate the tips and insight. I just ordered this machine from Amazon today and will practice on some old shirts I don't care too much about. For $60 it should pay for itself and be handy to have around. Anyone know how this will handle hemming jeans as well? http://www.amazon.com/Brother-LS2125...cmu_pg__header
     
  14. max_r

    max_r Well-Known Member

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    i've done it to most of my dress shirts, because they are always billowy in the waist. i never flat fell the seam though because i'm a lazy fuck. cheap and easy way to make a cheap shirt fit great, imo.


    i remember there was a thread a while ago with some guy altering his own dress shirts, but i can't find it.
     
  15. cptjeff

    cptjeff Well-Known Member

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    One tip: find a shirt that fits great and use it as a template. It'll simplify measuring.
     
  16. Tyrone MacStiophain

    Tyrone MacStiophain Well-Known Member

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    Pacific Northwest
    I swear I found some online instructions for this, and they're bookmarked on another computer. Nothing on youtube, though. If I find it, I'll post it.
    I also have started altering my clothes with a sewing machine - mostly slimming/hemming pants, but also slimming a couple of t-shirts. I figured out how to do the whatchacallit - flat lap hem, like on the inner seam of jeans - but it is time consuming and a bit more difficult to keep straight.
    As soon as I finish my master's thesis, I'm going to start buying shirt patterns and making my own from scratch!
     
  17. Zackb911

    Zackb911 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
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    Oct 5, 2010
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    Boston, MA
    I really appreciate the tips and help guys. I promise I spent a great deal of time searching before asking.

    My sewing machine will be here on Friday and I plan to do a little practice on some shirts. I also have a pair of PRL cargo pants which I love but never wear as they're far too loose fitting. I may take a stab at slimming them up and seeing if I can make them fit better.
     
  18. styleguy2

    styleguy2 New Member

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    Feb 2, 2011
    Haven't done it myself but agree with the above poster: find a shirt that has the best fit and work with that. I always use one shirt as a template when I get the others tailored. When you know what you like and what looks good on you, it makes everything a lot easier.
     
  19. blahman

    blahman Well-Known Member

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    Hmmm using sewing machine is one thing, anyone hand stitch darts?
     
  20. chet31

    chet31 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 12, 2011
    Location:
    Madison WI
    I am thinnish and have constant problems w/ shirts, asked my wife (a bit of a seamstress) to teach me how to take in my shirts from the side seams. She said don't bother, just take them to an alterations place, it's a pain to do yourself because of the "rolled seams." Also, you need a decent sewing machine to do it right.

    Darts are easier to do, and I know some people don't like them, but to me, they are still infinitely better looking than a lot of blousing.
     

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