March 18, 2011
I bought this shirt from the J Crew outlet a couple years ago and at first I liked it but after a few weeks I started to get a sinking feeling about this top. I bought it at a time when I needed a lightweight long sleeve shirt for Texas' mild winter and thought this fit the bill. The first sign that something was wrong was when I seriously considered being a pirate for Halloween and using this shirt as part of the costume.
So now every time I wear this shirt with red and white stripes all over me I can't help but feel like a pirate... Or a Venetian gondolier... Or a mime...
So this problem must be remedied somehow and I decided to take needle and scissors to this top and see if I could turn it into something wearable and less embarrassing.
First I chopped off the sleeve length making sure to keep an extra inch for a hem. Originally that was all I was going to do but I took it a few steps further.
Next I pulled the the upper part of the sleeves away (they're still attached to the side seam at this point). I cut off the upper portion of the shirt and replaced it with a white jersey section over the shoulders. I made a boat neck opening and didn't need to make a collar.
I would have liked the front piece to be smaller but because the original neckline was so low my new piece also needed to extend lower.
I attached my new pieces to the main body of the shirt and then re-attached the sleeves.
Above you can see where the new white serged edge meets the original red stitching on the sleeve.
Finally I stuck a few military style buttons on the shoulder for decoration. I was looking for some anchor buttons but when I didn't find any I thought that was ok because anchors might have played up the nautical theme a little too much.
So with a little tweaking I now have a shirt that is much less Captain Jack Sparrow and much more Mediterranean Yacht vacation... yes? Maybe? Well, at least now I don't look like a giant candy cane... Or a barbershop pole... Or Where's Waldo... (if you can think of any more, please humor me in the comments!)