Scrapbusting with the Concord T shirt

When you are fat, all those suggestions for using smaller bits of fabric don’t really work the same way. You need far more fabric than people in smaller sizes so when you are looking up “what to make with less than a yard of fabric?” on google, the suggestions are a bit disheartening and frustrating when they use existing patterns that in larger sizes actually require much more fabric than a yard. When I buy fabric, I don’t ever buy less than a yard and a half. That can make me leggings or a short sleeve top and many other things. But sometimes, a yard doesn’t even make underwear in larger sizes. I think that’s tough to remember when you are smaller sized and writing these lists. There aren’t lists for “How to scrapbust when you are fat.” Although, now I want to write that list.

There’s always others ways to scrapbust, however, by using existing patterns and making design changes based on the fabric needs.

I had three different grey-based fabrics in my stash all with less than a yard of fabric left. I had a waffle knit with geometric print on it (only 1/4 of a yard), a striped doubleknit (just under a yard), and the remnant of a grey knit sheet that I used for a costume (about half a yard).

I used the waffle knit on the cowl neckline and for large sleeve bands. The grey knit sheet became the sleeves (please ignore the fact that they look twisted here…It’s because the sleeve bands are twisted because I didn’t pay attention putting it on before the picture) and the striped doubleknit became the body of the shirt (no attempt to stripe match since the yardage was so low). I did all this using the Cashmerette Concord T-shirt as a base pattern.

Originally, the shirt wasn’t going to be a cowl neckline, but the doubleknit stretched out when I sewed the neckband on it. You can see how it is stretching in that back view and pulling the fabric down off my shoulders. I’m almost sure the doubleknit has some rayon in the fabric. I got it with a bunch of other knits from LA Finch Fabrics when I won a sewing challenge last year. But not a problem, since I love a good cowl neckline.

The doubleknit is super stretchy; I had to remove a slight bit of width in the back to make it fit in the fabric constraints but the extra stretch makes that okay. The hem is the curved hem view using the grey knit sheet for the hem facing.

How soft is that doubleknit, though? It’s so soft! I wish that technology would catch up so you could feel this fabric. Like I just want to pet it. I wish I had more than just that piece!

I’m hoping the waffleknit softens a bit more in the wash since it’s not as drapey as I like a cowl to be. It looks okay but could definitely look a bit better.

Next time you have some pieces that are less than a yard, think strategically about what patterns you can use and mix and match! You can take any pattern and draw new panels or cut/design lines.

This is the last of my winter projects. I sadly didn’t get around to finishing all the things I wanted to for the season. I still haven’t started a new winter coat! But my brain is definitely not on Winter plans anymore so it will have to wait for the future. Some of my plans, however, might make it in my early Spring sewing since this is transitional weather in Toronto. For most of April, we’ll be anywhere from zero to plus 20 celcius. I’ll still be grabbing for all those layers for the next while.

12 thoughts on “Scrapbusting with the Concord T shirt

  1. Great job, Andie! I recently did my second fabric mixing on the P4P Ragdoll Raglan, and I love the way it turned out. Now I’m giving all my knit scraps the side eye. Most of them were to become panties, now they’ll likely make it into a tee.

  2. I’m totally with you on the scrap thing, when people cut a tshirt and then brag about how they also managed to get a pair of undies cut out of the scraps, I just laugh and laugh and laugh. But color blocking is a great option. I really like how you tied the cowl fabric back in on the sleeves, I think it would have looked disjointed otherwise (as my color blocking often does), so that is a great tip! Use your accent fabric twice! Also, I’ll be waiting for that stash busting for fat people post πŸ˜‰

    • Right?! It’s so frustrating when I read that and it’s like “you can do that too!” And then I die laughing because no. I’m going to be doing a post soon on redesigning underwear patterns to use smaller scraps. And by soon, I mean….next couple months. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ so much to write about so little time!

  3. I totally get this…if I am really lucky a metre of knit will go around my body, but forget about the sleeves and any bands, collar, cowl, etc. I try to buy enough for it all, but sometimes, I need to colour block, or piece to make it work. Your choices look wonderful.
    Barb

  4. Hi Andie

    Fantastic way to use up those bits of fabric, I like the “patched” style myself and happily do it on purpose!

    Re winter coat. It is quite an undertaking and its a shame you didn’t do it this year. Why not do it throughout this year so it’s ready for when the winter comes?, A ‘paced’ project (lol) for once make pacing fun and practical! It does mean needing space to store and you’d need to plan in advance so you do it like chapters in a book (am I making sense or is this the opiates talking?) step by step like weekly or twice a month in small bits so it doesn’t impact on work/ life/ other sewing. Just a thought. I’ve never done a big complicated project but this is how I’d approach it. I also seriously love planning stuff out with military precision!

    Hope all is well. Things are usual mix here. You take care XXX

    T xxx

  5. What a great top! I’m really not great at pattern matching, like you are. I’ll be looking forward to that list from you… πŸ˜‰

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