I’m here today to share a recent hack that I made to one of my favorite color block tee patterns, The Valerie from 5 out of 4 Patterns. I was actually inspired to do this hack from a sewist friend of mine, Kimberly from Bow Button Fabrics, who made one first. Recently, Kimberly released some custom ocean themed fabric in her shop and shared a make including those fabrics, and down the middle of the tee she hacked it to have a wave. By this point I had already purchased one of the fabrics to make Tayln a tee out of it. Kimberly always gets me with her prints that include turtles/tortoises and this print had, you guessed it, turtles. For those of you who don’t know our family consists of the 4 of us, 2 dogs and our pet sulcata tortoise.
Before starting my project, I reached out to Kimberly to make sure she was okay with me recreating her hack and if she had any tips. She had a different idea on how to attach the two pieces than what I was thinking. Again, with her permission I’m going to share how she did hers, so if you too decide to recreate this amazing hack, you’ll have options. Who doesn’t love options?! Here’s what she did, she cut out her pattern pieces including a wave, serged the raw edge of the sand portion, stabilized onto the blue/darker print, then cover stitched along the serged seam. I would have never guessed that’s how she did it. It looks incredible and so clean and the serged cover stitched portion is really eye catching.
Before I cut into my luxurious ocean fabric, I decided to make a muslin out of some bright striped fabric that I received from a mystery box that I’m not particularly fond of. The last thing I would want is to cut into the intended fabric which is not cheap (but totally worth the cost) and run into an error and have that fabric go to waste. Which would honestly make me cry. Luckily, my muslin came together amazingly and exactly how I envisioned it, so I was able to move onto the real deal.
I use a vivimage projector to cut out all of my patterns, (yay for saving paper!) so, for this first step I used parchment paper to cut out the pattern pieces. If you still use your printer and tape together your pdf pattern pieces, then go ahead and do that as instructed. Once you have done either option, you’re going to tape together the bodice pieces. Next, grab a writing utensil and create your wave going between both pattern pieces. When you’re happy with the wave, remove the tape used to secure the two pieces together and use a pair of scissors or your rotary cutter to cut out those curves from both bodice pieces. Take those cut curves and tape them to the opposite bodice piece (left bodice cut curve is taped to the right-side bodice along the same curve to fill in the gaps)
Place your bodice pieces over your chosen fabric and cut out. I chose to cut 1/4″ from my wavy edge to give myself a little more seam allowance but assuming you’re already using a color blocked pattern this step isn’t necessary as a seam allowance is already included. (Side note, be sure to cut out the correct necklines for front/back bodice pieces) Continue cutting out remaining pattern pieces per tutorial instructions.
After all pieces have been cut out, we’re going to start on construction. Grab your two bodice pieces and place them right sides together. I started clipping along the curves then continued to clip along the edge. This should be a 1:1 ratio, do not stretch either of the fabrics to fit. Don’t be afraid of using too many clips to ensure the pieces are lined up as they should be.
Whether you use a serger or are using a zig zag stitch with your sewing machine be sure to go slow while stitching the two pieces together. Once your pieces are stitched together use an iron to press the seam to one side then top stitch if desired. Afterwards you will finish the pattern instructions per the tutorial.
Now you’re done! Stand back and admire your work! I’m completely obsessed with this hack that Kimberly came up with! I’ve already made two shirts for my son and I’m sure as we head into spring and summer I’ll continue to make more. I also made a Tik Tok tutorial for this hack if you’re more of a visual learner. Thanks for hanging out with me today, I hope you enjoyed!
Fabrics not mentioned above.
Solid Blue French Terry from Raspberry Creek
Royal Blue Cuff Ribbing for neckband from Bow Button Fabrics
Honu Turtle Fabric from Ohana Fabrics
Pickle French Terry from Bow Button Fabrics
Until next time,
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