Thursday, 1 October 2015

Lace T-Shirt or another Hybrid of New Look 6735 and Style Arc Ann T

What to do in changeable hot-cold spring weather?
Make a T-shirt that can be used as a second layer over another T shirt or tank.
I'd had some semi-stretchy cotton lace in the stash for a long time, left over from another project and I had been thinking about making a lace T shirt from it and then I finally got around to making it up in a few hours. It was one of those 'why did I wait so long' things.

I used my  custom T-shirt pattern which is based on New Look 6735  link to NL6735 and the relaxed fit of the Style Arc Ann T  Style ARC Ann T. More on my Hybrid T here and my experience of the Style arc ann T here

I am wearing this T with a purchased flesh coloured tank top from Target.

My Hybrid T

For this T shirt I raised the neckline 6 cm and cut the back on the fold. The fewer seams in lace the better. It really helps to have the front as a full pattern piece when cutting out, for the placement of lace or stripes or anything really!  

Luckily there was 3cm  of plain knit forming the selvedge. I cut my neck band from that.

Tips for construction:

Wash  your lace to preshrink.

Be careful not to stretch it during cutting and handling.

Stabilise the shoulders with 1cm strips of whisper weft.

Sew the shoulders with a narrow zig zag then serge. 

Cut your neck strip about 3 inches longer than you need.
To attach your neck strip,* stretch it  ever so slightly as you zig zag, keeping the strip on top and the body of the T shirt at the teeth. Feed the bottom layer in as you stretch the top.
* Don't close the ends yet -  just do it as a strip
This sounds tricky but once you get the idea it works well for applying neckbands or elastic for that matter. The ideal ratio seems to be 4 inches of band to 5 inches of body. Pre pin until you get the hang of it. Instead of sewing the neckband as a closed loop I attach one end, starting an inch away from the CB and go around then I leave another 1 inch gap and the tail hanging. Then once I am happy with the fit I close the CB of the neck band with zig zag and the serger.
Then I zig zag around the neck from the outside to make the serged seam lie flat towards the body.

Attach the sleeves in the flat. 

Finish the hems of the sleeves with heatnbond lite. This is an iron on strip of sticky webbing that you put inside hem fold and iron to stick it together. It eventually washes away. Be sure to use a cloth between the garment and your iron to avoid a sticky hotplate. Finish  off with a 3mm x 3mm zig zag near the edge.

Serge one side seam from sleeve to T-shirt hem. First do a few straight stitches with the sewing machine at the start and the finish first to prevent shifting by the serger foot.
Hem of the body of the T shirt using heatnbond lite as for the sleeves.

Serge the other sleeve to body seam. Stitch a few straight stitches with the sewing machine to hide the tail.

There it is.

Our sunny but pleasantly warm days are predicted to give way to the full blast of a dangerously dry summer. I'm making hot weather dresses now!

Happy sewing wherever you are,



  1. Very pretty Val, the lace is lovely and beautifully sewn.

  2. Wow, I love this one Val, and thank you for all the helpful hints - I have copied them into my notebook. The one about starting with a few straight stitches is a revelation! Think of all the bits of stretch fabric that have been 'chewed' into the machine at the start of a seam. Your top is gorgeous, and so on trend - lace is big this year, I see.

  3. Lovely! I just bought some lace yesterday so your tips are very helpful!

  4. Thanks Dilliander
    Patricia and Linda T I am always glad when people tell me my 'How To's' have been helpful!