Last Tuesday I didn't go into work until 4:00 p.m. We had a Star Wars party at 5:00. I had resigned myself to no "inspired-by" outfit until that morning when I decided to see if I could find a boy's size large henley. All the store had was size small. I did find this ribbed 100% cotton fabric for less than $6.00 a yard, so I bought a yard and a half and somehow thought I could finish drafting a pattern and sew this up before I went to work.
I did not pre-wash the fabric. I always pre-wash. Skipping the preparation step made me hasty and sloppy with the rest of the process until I reminded myself to slow down and do things correctly or I would regret it later. Taking time to be careful doesn't add that much extra time and saves much time having to re-do things. Following a process is important to me feeling focused. Skipping one thing throws everything else out of whack.
I finished the pattern, which uses the Bronx neck and arm and my t-shirt pattern for the rest. I used the sleeve head of the medium Bronx sleeve and added length, making sure there was enough room for my larger biceps. The bodice pattern has a Bronx small at the neck and armhole depth, a large at the armhole width, and the rest is based on my self-drafted t-shirt pattern. I also raised the back neckline and used a one-half inch swayback adjustment at the back shoulder. The armhole ended up with too much ease, but it pulled the shoulder/sleeve seams to where they are supposed to be, so I'm not sure how to interpret that. For the next try, I want to move the armhole width to a medium
The pattern is intended to have center front and back seams, but I was in a hurry and cut on the fold. I half thought I would have enough time to learn how to insert a button placket and didn't know how the seam would interfere with that, but in the end decided I didn't have enough time. I carefully measured self-binding and gathered the neckline to fit. I hate cutting self-binding. It's impossible to mark in knits and I don't have a rotary cutter, so it's also impossible to cut accurately. Once sewn, there are hardly any gathers at the neck, but it looked like a lot before stitching. I used a band on the sleeve ends, and left them long not having time to cut them to the proper length. I turned up the hem.
The hardest part was keeping this ribbed fabric from stretching as I stitched. It isn't perfect, but not as bad as it could have been.
So it's not a Han Solo shirt, but it was a white long-sleeved knit shirt, which is closer than anything I had before I sewed this. I didn't have time to make a black vest, so I wore a blue one, jeans, and black boots. I said my outfit was inspired by Han Solo's costume in the same way that movies are inspired by books. Nothing like the original, but if one looks carefully, there are similarities.
This shirt is a very loose and I don't enjoy wearing white. Still, it gave me pleasure for the evening and cost three hours of labor and less than $10. It let me test a pattern and gives me a warm, comfortable shirt to wear for sleeping, which I need because what I have now is getting very threadbare. So all in in all, a success worth the cost.