I have a secret to tell you, I have been hiding it really well…but this week it is OUT!

Lately I have been having a love affair with gingham! There, I said it, and I just cant seem to get enough of it!



I simply needed to add my new obsession into the Spring line somehow, and when I stumbled across this old red gingham shirt at the thrift store – I had my upcycle!


Now, typically I don’t like to share upcycles too frequently UNLESS I feel that it is relevant to the reader. As in something you can make yourself and not specific to the upcycled original shirt. This gingham shirt may be a slight exception to that rule. Why? Because it already had the shirring on the back.


Why did I still share it? Because the shirring was done in such a way that it would be simple enough to recreate. All you need is an old button up to make this shirt.

So let’s get started, shall we?


Using an old shirt that fits well, cut out your pattern pieces. Be sure to utilize the bottom hem and sleeve hems of your original upcycled shirt. If you plan on adding shirring to your shirt, simply cut the front pattern piece about 6 – 7″ wider than you normally would. The back pattern piece should be cut with the button placket on the center fold.


Alter your front and back neckline (back neckline is always a little higher then the front, once again – just follow your T Shirt’s pattern). To add some ruching or shirring, simply sew 5 to 6 lines of shirring about 4″ in length directly in the center of the front bodice – approximately 2″ below neckline. There is a great shirring tutorial found HERE.


I don’t know why I kept calling it ruching when I was editing the photos. It is really shirring. Sorry about that. Shirring is just a form of ruching really.


Cut out sleeves.

You may want to add a little bit of shirring to the bottom center of the sleeve as well – just add a couple of lines about 2″ in length, approximately 1″ up from bottom hem. And once again, if you decide to add shirring, cut your sleeve pattern pieces about 3″ wider.


Put your front and back shirt pattern pieces together, pin and sew at shoulder seams.


Pin the right side of the sleeve to the right side of the armhole arc opening of the shirt.


Fold the shirt right sides together, pin and sew the underarm and side seams.


We are almost there…


Using a little bit of excess fabric from your shirt, make some bias tape. Attach to the neckline, starting at the back button placket.


Be sure to gather the neckline fabric in front above the shirring when pinning the bias tape in place. If it helps you to sew a quick line of gathering stitches along the front neckline – you can do that to help stabilize. I just kind of eyeballed it.


Finish off with your bias tape, and you are done! If you need help sewing with bias tape, there are a bunch of fabulous tutorials out there, I have always liked this one, and this one.


And there you have it…


My love for gingham is now out in the open. It is not just for babies anymore. Have you seen this patchwork gingham quilt??? Ummm…yeah, awesome!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and until next time…


Happy Sewing!

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