This is one of those shirts that looked a lot better on me in the fitting room than it did after I got it home. It had some inner pockets that I felt made my hips look big and the large black on white gingham was a little too harsh a print for me. So it sat in my closet taking up space for about two years.
I do that. I hold on to an article of clothing forever because I spent money on it and haven’t really worn it and don’t want to get rid of it. My current goal is to not have a single item in my closet that I don’t wear. If I am not wearing it, I won’t miss it when I screw up on it.
I had this in the “do something with it pile” for a while. One day, as I was watching Gilmore Girls, I was inspired by something Lane wears. It was a green plaid shirt that looked like the shoulders had been chopped off and lace had been put there. It was without sleeves so I could not copy it exactly, but I don’t have to be able to if it properly inspires me.
I bought a quarter yard of black lace on sale for $4.98 and I already had some black cotton and a box of green dye that I got on sale for $1.25 months earlier.
After dying the shirt Green, I got to work with the seem ripper. I took out the side pockets, the waist tie, and took off the collar then sewed the seems closed again. I carefully removed the sleeves. I needed to keep the sleeve in tact as I wanted to use them as a pattern when cutting the replacement sleeves.
Carefully following the outline of the shoulders, I cut the black lace and sewed it onto the shoulders.
The sleeves were the hardest part to get right. I used the sleeves I removed as a pattern and backed the lace with black cotton. I did 7 sessions of pinning, trying on and re-pinning and one session of sewing it trying it on and pulling it out again before I got it how I wanted it.
I have been very pleased with the results. The green really softened the whole thing and the lace gave it a completely different style. I love this piece now.