Add a Sleeve to a Short Sleeve T-shirt

Kids Clothes Week is here! It's a friendly challenge to sew for children one hour a day for a week. My first project is for my oldest who is usually neglected when it comes to sewing. Putting his summer clothes away, I realized that he had a few short sleeve t-shirts that he never had a chance to wear. Between clearance sales at Target and Mini Boden he had more t-shirts that it was possible for him to wear. It was time to turn them into long sleeve shirts.

There are many methods to do it, but I think this one is the easiest and the fastest, especially when dealing with smaller sizes. One caveat with this method - it will not work with form fitting tight shirts. 
 1. Place a short sleeve t-shirt on top of a long sleeve shirt to determine the length of new half sleeve. Trace around the long sleeve stopping where the short sleeve ends. Add seam allowances and cut out the half sleeve pattern.
2. Cut the short sleeve apart along the seam, as shown. Pin the long sleeve and stitch following the existing stitches of the short sleeve. Note: I prefer to hem sleeves before I attach them.
3. Stitch or serge along the side of the sleeve blending the new seam into the old one. Done.

The great part  about this kind of project is that you can easily upcyle old shirts or use small remnants to create completely unique looks. He had two identical blue t-shirts with strange logos in front. I am not sure why I bought them. :)

For this t-shirt I upcycled two different shirts adding sleeves, a band at the hem and also a panel in front with Eli's initials.

The aweome vintage bike graphic came from Eli's old t-shirt that I absolutely loved, but it was too small and too worn out. Now it has a new life. :) I made the sleeves and the band from my husband's old t-shirt.
I upcyled my three year old son's  t-shirt to make sleeves for this one. When he woke up from his nap and saw it he burst into tears. "That's mine", he cried. And that's when you say, "Oh, look! There is a puppy. Do you want to see the puppy?"

Overall, I am pleased with the results. It didn't take much time to make, and the boy is a proud owner of four new shirts.

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  1. I feel less strange when I see that I'm not the only one having fun with t-shirt scraps hehehe
    Thanks for sharing on Refashion Obsession Community <3
    MammaNene @ SergerPepper

  2. 4 new shirts, that is very productive! My favourite one is probably the one with the bike, although all 4 are very cute. and poor Max :) I guess it means that you ll have to make HIM smth next time :)

  3. Great refashioning!!! I'll have to try this.

  4. I like your combos! I may have to do this to a few t-shirts in my kiddos drawer too. Short sleeve season has most certainly ended!

  5. Finally I have found something which helped me.Appreciate it!
    Long sleeve T shirt


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