I found a couple of boxes of dye in my sewing room recently. I also came across a couple of clothing items I had held onto with the intention of refashioning them into something else. On top of all that, I managed to get some unidentified blue spot on my khaki shorts. Needless to say, I went a little crazy with the dye. Several of my husband’s white t-shirts that he never wore, everything I mentioned already, another pair of shorts and a jacket went into it. I’ve only tried it a couple of times before, but I was mostly happy with the results.
One of the shirts I threw in my daughter bought a few years ago in Las Vegas. It was during her very brief period of actually liking pink, so it was voted out of her closet a while ago. It has an AC/DC graphic on the front though, so the sixth grader in me wouldn’t actually get rid of it. Unfortunately, in my hurry to toss it into the dye bath, I didn’t get a before photo. Think Pepto-Bismol. However, apparently pink and black make purple.
One of her favorite things to wear around the house lately is a shirt she and her friends altered for homecoming last spring. She was wearing it every day, so clearly she needed another one. I decided to try one with gathered shoulders, using only fabric from the shirt itself.
Lay the shirt out flat and carefully fold in half. It’s probably a good idea to try it on first to see where you want the arm hole to stop. Make a mark there.
Cut from just inside the shoulder seam to the mark on the side.
Cut a small piece from under the sleeve that measures the distance from the neck seam to edge of shoulder in length and about 1 1/4” wide.
Pin to the shoulder, centering over the shoulder seam. Stitch down the center and close to the two long edges using your favorite knit stitch (mine is a narrow zigzag) to create two channels. Repeat on opposite side.
Cut away the top seam and bottom hem from each sleeve.
Starting with the arch at the top, cut a 1/2” strip, spiraling into the center of the sleeve as shown. I cut away some of the outside points and sharp curves to maintain the shape. Compare this to the photo above.
Cut the strip to about 30” long. Shorter is fine too – we ended up cutting some off – but this gives you some wiggle room.
Attach a safety pin to one end of the strip and feed it into one channel from the neck.
Once it reaches the end, pull it through a few inches. Go back to the other end of the strip, attach the pin, then feed it into the other channel, also from the neck.
Pull both ends though evenly until the loop is gone.
Carefully gather the shoulder by pushing the channels up the strip.
Tie the strips to secure.
Channel your inner rocker chick, get out your air guitar and you’re ready to go!