There is always good news and bad news in people’s daily lives on this planet. Mine is no different. The good news is that the husband has lost some weight, and the bad news is that his shirts that I previously made him no longer fit well. And, the terrible news at least for me anyway, is that I needed to alter his basic sloper shirt pattern to fit him better at his current weight. And as much as I didn’t want to mess with his sloper pattern, his collars and necks are looking so big and sloppy that I had to take action now.
I knew that altering his pattern would have a cascade effect. Making the neck opening smaller would change the curve of the yoke which would have to be redone, and then the tab adjusted along with it. And that would also end up making the shoulder seam longer which really needs to be shorter as it is. And then that would mess with the armscye and so on and so on.
Wow! Perhaps it would be easier to just throw away his current sloper pattern and start fresh?
After a lot of thought, a simpler answer occured to me. Luckily the neck opening is big all the way around the neck so, if I took some out of the top of the shoulders, that would make the neck opening smaller without affecting the curve of the neck so it would not end up affecting the yoke or tab. And taking some out of the shoulders would also make the shoulder seam a little smaller without affecting the armscye. This sounded like the answer.
I decided to be conservative and only take 1/2 inch out the the seam, front and back, to total 1 inch on each side. And I just folded the pattern down the 1/2 inch so in case this was the wrong path, I had not chopped up the original sloper pattern. I then cut the fabric out and sewed the shoulder seam to test my theory, and then I had the husband try it on. It looked good so far. Taking the 1/2 inch out brought the neck opening back up to where I wanted it to be.
Next I continued on with the construction of the shirt. And I had the husband try it on frequently throughout the process to make sure it was all was fitting well along the way. I did end up cutting the back curve of the neck opening down just a little, maybe 1/8 inch before I sewed the collar on and I did have to cut 1/2 inch off the top of each yoke to match what I had removed from the shoulders. When the collar was finished I had the husband try it on once again and it all looked good still.
After some other alterations to the side seams, I noticed that I had plenty of scraps left over from the cutting out the husband’s shirt. Even though this fabric is just a single knit, it was easy to sew so I decided to make some kids shirts from the scraps I had left. I was able to cut a size 1 and 2 t-shirt from the scraps. These shirts sewed up quickly and easily. Picking out and embroidering the dinosaurs on them was a lot of fun. Plus there will be no scraps returning to the stash. I ended up using all the fabric I had left over.
I don’t know yet if the alterations I made to the husband’s sloper were the correct ones yet. The shirt will need to pass the wear test to see if the fits as good as it looked when it was tried on. At this point the shirt has been washed and ironed and is hanging in the closet waiting for its turn to be worn. So, I will know soon if the changes I made will work out for now.