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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Create Your Own Sweatshirt or Tee Shirt Designs

Sewing Projects - Sweatshirts - Tees

Sewing Friends:

Someone asked where I've been. I haven't posted in a while. What with the holidays, traveling, sickness and working, there just aren't enough hours in a day to do everything. But, I do want to tell you about a fun sewing project that you might want to try.

Deconstructing a plain old sweatshirt or tee shirt and making it over into a fashionable garment is one of my most popular sewing classes. Why is it the most popular? Because it is simply fun!

Whether you are a beginner, intermediate or an advanced sewist, young, old, teen or college student, makeover sweatshirts and tees is the easiest, quickest way to express your creativity and have a sense of accomplishment.

Make sweatshirt jackets or designer tees for yourself, family, friends and kids of all ages any time of year.

In my classes, students get simple guidelines to get started, but they are the designers of these one-of-a-kind creations. No one is concerned about fitting. The jacket will fit someone. And, there are never any errors. The "mistakes" are opportunities to be more creative. This "design as you go" process leads to some of the most spectacular garments.

The supplies are also simple. All you need is a sweatshirt, a bit of fabric and whatever trim you want to use. You don't even have to sew it if you don't want to. Just use some fusible web tape like Steam-A-Seam. Slit the front open or not. Add a zipper or buttons or a hood or not. Lengthen or shorten sleeves or not. Add ruffles or lace or denim or corduroy or whatever. You are the designer.

A sweatshirt or a tee shirt is a great canvas to practice your sewing and designing skills.

Whether than making samples of embroidery, applique, decorative stitches, heirloom stitches or techniques, fabric manipulation, felting, couching, bobbinwork, sashiko, ruching , quilting techniques, painting, stenciling, stamping or whatever it is that you want to try, I encourage you to do it on a sweatshirt or tee shirt so it becomes a wearable work of art. This is so much more rewarding than a pile of samples in a drawer.

How about making a sweatshirt with decorative zippers or different pockets. I'm considering doing my future demo pieces on sweatshirts. It seems that would be far more interesting than little square samples.

There are a lot of free sweatshirt and tee shirt ideas on line to inspire you. There are also a lot of books, and software available that give you step-by-step instructions on how to create a specific design. There are some wonderful makeover sweatshirt artists like Mary Mulari and Londa Rohling that offer superb instructions and infinite designs. Check out some sewing books.

I suggest that you get together with some friends or a sewing class and let your imagination take over to create your unique designs. You will be surprised how easy it is! The ideas flow in a group.

And, remember that if the makeover sweatshirt fails for some reason, you can always turn it into a bag!

Don't you just love sewing?

To Your Sewing Success,


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Blogger TwinkleBee said...

Thanks for sharing all your tips! I'm a sewer, love any available tips that people have learned through the years. Great blog!

3:22 PM  
Blogger Antonia said...

Hi Marian,
Hope all is well with you!You don't have to give us any more freebies-just hope you are still sewing and teaching.

9:59 PM  
Anonymous Kenny Surtani said...

Our collection includes fabrics such as cashmere gabardine, all wool Venetian, silk jacquard, silk cotton, fancy wool crepe, Fuji sand washed silk, cotton corduroy, wool Scottish tartan, satin silk, pure cashmere, douppioni silk, fancy silk velvet, silk corduroy, heavy silk crepe, fancy linen, fancy brocade, silk linen, silk wool suiting & many more. The choice of colours is also very wide. Once we have your measurements placing orders in future is very easy through our order on line section.

7:40 AM  
Anonymous JanS said...

Wonderful ideas. I am always recycling old sweatshirts into warm tank tops an embellishing them with embroidery.

12:22 AM  
Anonymous kristin said...

Great ideas and tips on your blog. Have you ever sewn sweatshirts together to make a blanket?

9:39 AM  
Blogger Marian said...


I haven't made blankets from sweatshirts, but I see no reason why you couldn't. You can use the fabric for anything you want. A blanket sounds like a good idea to me. Go for it!


8:47 PM  
Blogger Alisa said...

Wonderful ideas. I am always recycling old sweatshirts into warm tank tops an embellishing them with embroidery.

Awesome Tees

11:35 PM  

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