Purple Star Henley Cap sleeve, a Free Tutorial Mash-up | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

Using FREE Tutorials to Design Your Clothes

Purple Star Henley Cap sleeve, a Free Tutorial Mash-up | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

Over the past year I’ve been blogging off and on still trying to figure out just what kind of sewing blog I’d like to portray. (And what I have time for!) In the end, I know I want to encourage other potential sewists out there to start sewing, keep sewing, and finding ways to afford sewing. Today, I used four free tutorials to create a unique look for this shirt. No money was shelled out for patterns and all of these tutorials are easily found online. In fact, I’m completely self-taught and find most of what I need to teach myself online.

First, let’s start with the basics. I need more tank tops, and since I created the *best* tank top tutorial over at DIYMaternity, I used that one. Haha. Ok, I’m totally kidding, but I did already have a pattern for myself that fits while I’m pregnant. BUT, you can totally use this same method for a non-maternity tank!  So, BAM, tank top knocked out.Purple Star Henley Cap sleeve, a Free Tutorial Mash-up | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

But then I realized, I already have a plain gray tank top and really…(yawn) that’s boring. Let’s spice things up a bit. I saw this really great tutorial by my friend Heather also at DIYMaternity (but you can use it for non-maternity patterns too!) on creating a henley. I’ve never made a henley shirt before so I thought I would give Heather’s tutorial a shot. It worked great! And I’m secretly not so secretly proud of myself for my button placement and secured-ness. Yes, that’s a word. Plus I found that purple button in my stash and it matched perfectly. I love that it’s different and offers a bit of a pop at the top.

Purple Star Henley Cap sleeve, a Free Tutorial Mash-up | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

After I created the tank and henley I thought the shirt needed a bit more of the purple stars. So instead of keeping the tank the way it was, I added cap sleeves. Honestly, I had a hard time trying to find a way to add cap sleeves to an already cut-out tank. Most of the tutorials were for creating a cap sleeve without using an actual sleeve. But, this cap sleeve tutorial worked great, even though it is geared for woven fabrics and for a girl’s dress. The only change I made was to the length of the bias strips for the armhole. Since I was working with knits, I used the calculation of .8 X circumference of the armhole to bring the tank in a bit. It turned out great!

Purple Star Henley Cap sleeve, a Free Tutorial Mash-up | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

Lastly, the hidden tutorial….a unique clothing label created by ME! I am so excited about this tutorial. It was dreamed up because during the end of my third trimester I always feel rather….um…large… to put it nicely. Every pregnancy I have grown out of many of my clothes and rotate only a few choice tops near the end. That in itself makes me a bit depressed since I have 3 shirts to choose from. Well, not this time! And, even if I do only have a few, they are going to speak words of life over me. Instead of placing “small”, “medium”, or “large” on my shirts, I went with lovely words instead – “radiant”, “brave”, “Pretty”, and “Beautiful”. Every time I put these shirts on I feel different. I feel brave. Brave enough to mother 3+ kids. I feel pretty. Pretty enough to go on a date with my husband even though I haven’t showered that day. I feel beautiful. Beautiful that I’m carrying life inside of me even when my body is out of my control right now.

Purple Star Henley Cap sleeve, a Free Tutorial Mash-up | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

Star henley (this post) | Tribal raglan (post coming soon!) | Green camo raglan | Blue stripe Blanc Tee

And, there you have it! A mash-up of four FREE tutorials to create one awesome unique look just for me. You can do the same – go peruse the amazingness that is the internet. Check out Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram, or your favorite blogs. Mash up what you like to create yourself something amazing. And come back here and tell me about it!

Purple Star Henley Cap sleeve, a Free Tutorial Mash-up | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

Purple Star Henley Cap sleeve, a Free Tutorial Mash-up | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

Tutorial Details:

Material Details:

  • Gray fabric – salvaged Walmart jersey sheet, $1.67/yard
  • Purple Star fabric – purchased on pre-sale from l’oiseau fabrics, $10.50/yard
  • Buttons – in my stash, 4 matching white ones, plus one unique extra American Eagle purple one from my husband’s shorts.

Purple Star Henley Cap sleeve, a Free Tutorial Mash-up | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

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