FO x 2: (well 3 technically!) My perfect boxy tee

One might say that this simple boxy tee was nearly 3 years in the making! Why? Because I discovered an abandoned experiment in my stash from that time period. I picked it up…looked at it quizzically….wondered why it had been cast aside because…it looked like just the kind of tee I’d been looking for recently. So I sewed it up in half an hour and what do you know….it was exactly the shape and proportion I had been hankering after in my wardrobe. So I made 2 more!

self drafted box tee (5)

The first being this incarnation in a pique type knit from Stoff & Stil. I love the irregular sketchy arrows and the monochrome makes it a really versatile addition. The top is self drafted….but very simply so. Rectangles for body and sleeves but with a slight curve for the sleeve heads and armholes, and curves cut out for the front and back neckline. My original experimental one was literally just rectangles but I loved the proportions so much that I drafted a pattern and added in those subtle refinements….self drafted box tee (5)self drafted box tee

Then I liked that one so much that I made another! Also in a Stoff & Stil fabric. This is a slightly looser version. But all 3 (the original, which is black, and these two) are in constant rotation. It’s like I had my holy grail of tees sitting in my WIP pile for 3 years! What the heck?!! Revisit your WIPs people! Seriously….you started them for a reason!self drafted box tee self drafted box tee

So needless to say….I will be making a few more of these.

I also want to direct your attention to the neckbands on these babies. Notice they are perfectly turned in and laying flat? Well in the past this has always been a bit touch and go for me. (wavy neckbands anyone? Ack!) But I have been working on a formula for calculating the exact length of neckband you need, for any given neckline circumference….and any given fabric. (You may have read my initial ruminations here!) Because…it seemed to me that I needed to factor in the stretch percentage of the fabric I was using. A fabric with 40% stretch was not going to turn in the same way as a 60% stretch fabric cut to the same length. Well if my last few knit makes are anything to go by…I’ve nailed it! And there will be a post coming your way soon. So if you ever got frustrated at wavy or puckered neckbands….stay tuned!

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17 Comments

  1. patricia April 28, 2017

    I have made five of those since your post a few years ago. Like you I went through all my left over remnants and found several pieces that worked out well with this pattern. I also took apart a long skirt I never wore and made one from that. I have had several comments on them also. Thanks for the great ideas.

    Reply
    • Portia Lawrie April 29, 2017

      You’re welcome! Love that you refashioned one too!!

      Reply
  2. Michele April 28, 2017

    This is what I need in my wardrobe!!! Love that style!! I’ve never made clothing items before, would this pattern be very difficult for a novice?

    Reply
    • Portia Lawrie April 29, 2017

      This is made on an overlocker. But can be made on a standard machine that can handle knits. Plus knits are different to work with than wovens. The basic construction is very simple though. So doable for a beginner I would say.

      Reply
  3. Sarah April 28, 2017

    Think you need to produce this as a pattern. Its gorgeous!

    Reply
    • Portia Lawrie April 29, 2017

      Thank you Sarah! I have been thinking about it!

      Reply
  4. Faye Lewis April 28, 2017

    I love it – for real!

    Reply
    • Portia Lawrie April 29, 2017

      Thank you Faye!

      Reply
  5. Trish April 28, 2017

    I really look forward to seeing your formula for neck finishing. I make tops for my grandchildren as well as for adults in my family and the neckline is always a hit and miss affair, which makes or breaks the overall look.
    I’ve worked on a 2/3 ratio but it doesn’t always work well.
    Thank you for getting your head around this problem and I hope you come up with a definitive solution soon – may Einstein be with you!

    Reply
    • Portia Lawrie April 29, 2017

      Yeah the 2/3 ratio is not a sure fire formula IMHO. I need sure fire. Like you say….SO frustrating to have a top ruined at the final stage by a dodgy neckband…ack!

      Reply
  6. Wendy W April 29, 2017

    These are so nice Portia and I love your fabric choices – that little sketchy arrow one is perfect! Bet you’ll be wearing them loads.

    Reply
    • Portia Lawrie April 29, 2017

      Thanks lady! They are in constant rotation 😊

      Reply
  7. Sam April 29, 2017

    These are fabulous! I agree with Sarah, you should produce this as a pattern, I’d buy it!

    Reply
    • Portia Lawrie April 29, 2017

      Ah thanks lovely! You never know!

      Reply
  8. Anne April 29, 2017

    I love the arrow fabric. I’ve gone through a few UFOs – some I’ve completed and some I’ve discarded – I feel much better about them now!

    Reply
  9. PsychicSewerKathleen April 29, 2017

    I too look forward to reading your neckband formula. It is so hit and miss (the perfect description for the process I must say!) Sometimes they come out so perfect and other times that gaping is so annoying considering it will happen so late in the making you’re stuck with it! I’ve been sewing the neckband on leaving one of the shoulders open so in a semi-circle then sewing the shoulders afterwards. I’ve had better results with that I must say BUT sometimes I’ve actually pulled the band too much so you still must know just the right amount to pull the band as you’re sewing it on to get the right result.

    Reply
  10. Kathryn April 30, 2017

    These look great Portia, gorgeous fabrics too! I’ll look forward to reading your formula. I use about 30% smaller as my guideline. The thing is you can quickly see when you’ve made the neckband too big when you start sewing though you don’t tend to notice if it’s too small till you’re finished – so it would be great to have a formula that works!

    Reply

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