Hoppo Bumpo (n): A children's game. Played by folding one's arms and hopping on one leg. Aim is to bump opponents, so that they lose their balance. Last person standing wins.


November 06, 2009

A quick-and-dirty knit neckline refashion



Something that really stuck from early sewing lessons, was my teacher explaining that round adds pounds. The round she refered to, was the shape of a neckline. Now personally I think its chocolate that adds the pounds, but I have indeed found that a V-neck is a little more flattering to my ... ahem ... "shapely" shape.

So when I picked up this cute little sleeveless tee (shell) for $5 at the op (thrift/charity) shop recently, I knew the shallow scoop neckline was probably going to be all wrong for me. The knit fabric was lovely and I really liked the applique, but a couple of wears really confirmed that I might look more stylish in a flour sack.

So I got brave and decided to change the neckline. The binding around the neckline was a knit fabric too and I could tell it had a fair bit of stretch in it. I realised I could probably stretch it a little to fit a new shape.

I took out my fabric shears and stitch unpicker and got to work. First, I unpicked part of the top-most part of the applique, to make way for the new neckline.



Then using a very fine stitch unpicker, I very carefully undid all the stitching from the front of the neckline. The binding was separated from the garment from shoulder seam to shoulder seam. I tried to take care not to snag the knit fabric with the unpicker.



Next I folded the front of the top in half. I carefully matched seams and stripes as accurately as I could, to find the centre front. This way I could cut the V on the fold.



Once I found the centre front, I used tailor's chalk and a ruler to mark up where I wanted the new neckline to be. I knew I couldn't afford to make the neckline too deep or I would run out of binding!



Then I took a deep breath and went snip-snip and cut a V.



Next I pinned the binding back in place. This involved carefully easing the binding out to fit the new deeper neckline. It only just matched. If the V had been any deeper, I would really have needed to unpick all the binding and put a new piece on.



Using a three-step zigzag stitch I secured the binding in place. (The three step zigzag stitch is good for stretch fabric as it has some give in it.) The most difficult part, was making sure I didn't stretch the binding and fabric as I sewed, otherwise this would warp the neckline and make it sit out from my neck. The neckline looked a little wobbly when I finished so I gave it a little press.



Finally I stitched the last piece of applique back in place at the bottom of the motif. Et voila! A more flattering top. Better than a flour sack anyway!

27 comments:

  1. I'm impressed. Very nice work. It's such a cute top.

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  2. Wow. Way to go. You gotta be happy with that result.

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  3. That is amazing. You have done an excellent job. I am currently keen to try refashioing all sorts of clothes so really enjoyed your post. Cherrie

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  4. OMG you're a genius! By the way, what on earth is a three step zig zag stitch?

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  5. Very impressive, there is no way in the world I would attempt this so I am in total awe. The three step zig zag stitch sounds like a dance move..! xo

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  6. Love your modifications and in the wise words of my nan 'not just a pretty face!'

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  7. Oh Liesl, why why WHY did you not post this before I butchered a shirt myself recently? Thank you, hopefully will save future disasters while I learn about knit fabrics.

    Oh, and I hear you on the v-neck issue. Oh yes I do.

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  8. I love v-necks, I've always found them more flattering and more comfortable, I don't like stuff near my neck/throat.
    I love that you gave us pictures of the whole process, I often find it hard to follow instructions without a visual, so this was great.
    Thanks for sharing! :-)

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  9. That does look like it will sit so much more nicely. I hope you get a lot of wear out of it!

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  10. woohoo, sassy! Gotts show a bit of cleavage. I also dislkie the round neck, but short of chopping the whole binding off, didn't know how to make it look good. Now you've shown me! Thanks!

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  11. Excellent job! The one time I tried something like this, it didn't turn out so well...more like "unwearable" in fact...so I'm doubly impressed :)

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  12. You are the WOman! I bow in honour...

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  13. Nicely done, and very impressive to boot!

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  14. Thats an awesome flour sack if ever I did see one.
    You make it look so easy !!

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  15. That is awesome, makes me want to look at my tops differently. I too could benefit from removing those un-needed pounds. Who knew it was the neckline of my shirts not the tim-tams all this time!

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  16. well done! its amazing how much a change in shape can change a garment

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  17. Love it. It changes the whole look of the top. And some nice stretching of the bias and some ever so delicate unpicking. You are clever.

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  18. Well darn you're a clever little cookie.

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  19. Fantastic refashion! I am a big fan of V necks too.

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  20. Oh yes, round adds pounds!! I'd just never heard it put so succinctly! Brilliant. Thanks for sharing :)

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  21. Brilliant Liesl! Love that top. You clearly have more patience than me... great work!

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  22. very clever....I love posts like this...may have to put Hoppobumpo on my side bar. You are a fun read! (I, too, read more blogs than I actually craft) oh, wait, that was curly pops that said that. oh well...

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