How To: Refashion a Silk Shirt

This guest post comes to us from the lovely Alli of One Pearl Button fame. She write about fashion, craft, life and her work in Italy on the regular. Pop over and say hello! 

silk shirt restyle
When I’m thrifting, I shop as much with my hands as with my eyes.  As
long as you’re at a reasonably priced thrift store, high quality
cashmere and silk are always worth buying, so I’m on a constant hunt for
them.  When I came across this silk shirt on the dollar rack, I knew
immediately that it was coming home with me.  The fabric was thick,
soft, and beautiful – it was clearly the highest quality silk, and I
wanted to wear it everyday.  The only problem?  Um…it wasn’t quite my
style.  That’s okay, though, because I know an incredibly simple
technique for refashioning an outdated button-up, and today I want to
share it with all of you!
What you’ll need:
Iit doesn’t get much easier than this one; all you’ll need is a button
up and some basic sewing supplies (you don’t even need a machine!)
Step 1: 

Pick out a good Pandora station (I went with New Slang by The Shins).
Okay, I suppose this step is optional, but Step 2 can take a little
while, so I recommend finding something to keep yourself entertained.

shirt restyle step 1
Step 2:
Use a seam ripper to carefully remove the sleeves and collar of the shirt, keeping the seam allowances as neat as possible.
shirt restyle step 2
Step 3:

Chose which side of the shirt will be the front (I wanted mine to button
up the back, so I reversed front and back), fold the front of your
shirt in half with the shoulder seams lined up, and draw on a new
neckline.  I traced the neckline of another shirt to make it nice and
easy.
shirt restyle step 3
Step 4:
Cut along your traced line.
shirt restyle step 3b
Step 5:

Hem the raw edges.  For the armholes, I simply folded the original seam
allowance over once and stitched in place (no need to press!).  For the
neckhole, I hid the raw seam by folding over twice, pressed, and
stiched.  I’ve been on a hand sewing kick lately, so I did this by hand,
but you could easily use a machine.
shirt restyle step 4
Annnnnd done!  Now you have a pretty, modern shell, perfect for the hot
weather that’s coming or for layering on chillier days.  I wore mine to
watch the Cincinnati Rollergirls destroy Dayton and Fort Wayne on
Saturday night – fun!
silk shirt after 3 small
silk shirt after 4 small
silk shirt after small
(I realized after looking at this shot that I should tack up the back so it doesn’t gape open – oops!)
I’d love to see photos, if you give it a try!

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13 Comments

Kit

Love this- and it looks simple enough that even I could manage it! Very excited to give it a go, will have to resist the urge of going home and cutting up any old top :-p

Reply
Natalie

Oooh, I saw a silk shirt in a beautiful olive green at the local Red Cross charity shop a while ago, but didn't buy it because I didn't like the style (similar to the shirt you found). Now I think I need to go back and see if it's still there…

Reply
hungryandfrozen

Thanks for sharing. I love that you don't need a machine. I am hopeless on a sewing machine but actually enjoy pottering round with a needle and thread. Will keep this in mind 🙂

Reply
jess

This doesn't look too impossible, I might actually give it a try since I don't have to use my machine, and by that i mean, attempt to use my machine.

Reply
EMackk

Love the shirt now, so much more stylish. AND I have a greyhound too, aren't they just the best?! – Emma (from The Written Nerd)

Reply

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