Project Run & Play Sew Along–Week 5

Thursday, February 7, 2013

This week’s challenge is to repurpose a men’s button up shirt for a child. I was brainstorming ideas for this challenge while visiting my parents at their ranch, and I eventually latched onto the idea of incorporating a denim work shirt into my design. Now this particular shirt happens to have quite a long history. Yep, that’s a picture of my Dad wearing the shirt when we lived in Tacoma, Washington when I was a kid. So, this shirt happens to be probably 30 years old, perfectly vintage. As you can imagine, it was well loved, and my Dad was pretty attached to it. Since I was pretty determined, I tasked Avery with making the request for the shirt from her Opa. It worked wonderfully with only tad bit of grumbling on his part. Don’t worry he has an equally loved short sleeved version.

vintage shirt

In case there was any doubt that this was an actual work shirt, I documented the bits of hay and debris left behind when I removed the pockets.


I have a ton of pictures of the final outfit, so be prepared. I started with the Bloom Dress pattern from Sewing Modkid Style for the dress.


I’m loving the asymmetrical look lately, so I added part of the button placket across the shoulder. To add another feminine detail, I trimmed the edge in some super cute bias tape with a crochet edge. The button placket is actually a single layer. I removed the buttons and reattached them on top.


As I said above, I removed the pockets and reattached them with the bias trim. I added two vintage daisy appliques in the top corners.



For the back of the dress I used a large piece from the back of Opa’s shirt. I love how the denim is a bit darker on the bottom where the shirt would have been tucked in. The trick with adding woven fabrics to a knit pattern is strategic placement. I made sure not to remove too much of the stretch from the neckline and arm hole areas.


The pants are one of my favorite features. They are made entirely from the sleeves of the shirt. Again, I added the bias trim for a pop of color. I could totally see adding trim like this to one of my shirts!


Love these details!


Head over to Project Run & Play to see the other creative ideas!


  1. I can vouch for the authenticity and the age of the shirt! I'm married to the man who wore the shirt for 30 years and we definitely had to pry it out of his hands to get him to let go of it! It was kind of like a 3 year old giving up his favorite "lovey"!

  2. So fabulous, creative and clearly treasured! Lovely work :)

  3. Love it! It looks fun and comfortable and you would never know it was once a mans shirt :)

  4. That's very sweet that she is wearing such a special shirt and I love how you incorporated it into the dress, the asymmetrical design is a nice touch!

  5. I just love all of the little details you added to truly make this shirt special for your daughter. Very cute!

  6. what a great combination of men's shirt and knit wear... and keeping Opa's shirt alive for more generations to come ;o)

  7. They are so so so cute! I love the pants so much. I was thinking of using the sleeves for the bloomers for Eddie, but her thighs are ridiculous and my mock-up pair did not work out at all! Love the contrast binding!

  8. So creative! Love he detail in front and the matching pants. Looks awesome.

  9. Love all the details on this outfit and how you incorporated the features of grandpa's shirt into an entire outfit for your little girl. Tje gingham trim is perfect, too!


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