Today's piece started off as a $2 XL button-down blouse with shoulder pads out the wazoo and absolutely no shape (though I suppose square is a shape).
Despite all its faults, I really liked the tiny little navy and off-white floral print. Plus the fabric (rayon I think, but the tag was very faded) had a nice drape to it that would make a great flowy top.
I began by removing those crazy shoulder pads and the dated buttons.
Then off came the sleeves.
I cut off the button bands and pinned the raw edges together with the wrong sides together, then sewed all the way down about 1/4 inch from the edge.
Next I flipped the shirt inside-out and sewed the same seam again about 1/2 inch from the edge, encasing the raw edges.
I trimmed off the collar in the shape of the back neck, using an existing top as a template. I plan to turn this puppy around to make the back the front and the front the back. So I cut the front (formerly the back) down further into a scoop-neck, again using an existing shirt as a guide.
I followed the same procedure as above to make a french seam at each shoulder. Sew together 1/4 inch from the edge with wrong sides together, then sew 1/2 inch from the new edge with right sides together.
To take in the extra fabric at the top without losing the flowy nature of the shirt, I made four little pleats at the center front of the neckline, and stitched straight across the top edge.
I didn't want to pleats to flare out immediately under the neck edge, so I top-stitched them a few inches down.
When I tried it on, it was still a little too loose, so I took in about an inch under each arm, tapering back to the original side seam as I went down to keep the blouse loose and flowy.
To finish the raw edges, I grabbed some navy polka dot bias tape I had leftover from this skirt-to-shirt refash. Normally, I'm not one for mixing prints, but since they have the same colors and there will be very little of the polka dot, I think it's gonna be okay. Just this once. Plus, I'll take any chance I get to add more polka dots to my wardrobe.
I pinned the strips to the edge with right sides facing.
Once that was sewn, I folded them over toward the inside and stitched again.
I repeated this process on the armholes and gave the whole thing a good press, et voila!
I really like the way the binding turned out. I think I'm going to start making lots of extra binding anytime I have extra fabric so I can mix and match!