4XL Shirt to Fabulous Maternity Shirt

Yay! Another post! Those of you who follow me on Facebook saw a sneak preview of this project there a few weeks back. I don’t have any better pictures for you, but wanted to show you how easy it was to go from this to that:

I have to say that my inspiration for taking on such a project came from many directions. I had been refashioning t-shirts before I was pregnant, making them more girl-friendly, etc. Then I found diymaternity.com and was inspired by all the ways clothing could be altered for maternity. I purchased a dress pattern before I was pregnant, Vogue 8553 and always thought it was very cute:

The largest size my pattern comes in is a 12 and I needed a little bit more room than that for *ahem* things…so I added some room in the bust area. The style of the pattern was conducive to such alterations due to the loose, gathered fit, shaped by the neckline yoke. One thing i did, which I notated on the pattern for next time, is that though it was smart to add room in the bust, I will not need to alter the neckline yoke. I ended up adding a bit to those pattern pieces too just to be safe but it resulted in a slightly wider neckline than I desired. NOT AT ALL a big deal, just something to note for next time. 🙂

I cut my pieces as frugally as possible from my 4XL shirt, trying to preserve as much of the bottom of the shirt for belly coverage, put it together and tried it on. Perfect! I cut the bottom from as much of the t-shirt pattern in Burda 7825 as possible and attached it to the top portion. I sewed down that seam about 3/8″ from the stitching line to make a casing, inserted some 1/4″elastic and VOILA! A $5 maternity shirt (the shirts were only $2.50, but I ran out of fabric to finish the neckline yoke and had to go back and buy another).

Since the success of this piece, I have also made a purple tank using the Sorbetto pattern from Colette Patterns as my base. Basically, I cut the pieces from the armpit up, incorporating the center fold and then just left the t-shirt bottom uncut. I also used two $2.50 t-shirts for this pattern, so from the second shirt I cut a band for the bottom, stretched it to fit the blousey top and added some tuxedo ruffles on either side of the center fold. It’s a little sack-like, but very comfortable with only 6 weeks left to go.

It’s been so fun to transform these shirts and gain some maternity wear for $5 a piece! I’ll show you one more maternity dress I made for some weddings this spring and then I can’t wait to show you some nursing tank tutorials I’ve found – you won’t believe how simple and practical they are!


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