I like to make my muslins out of fabric that is wearable. That way, if the muslin fits, I can wear it as a shirt. Even if it needs a few alterations, as long as it's decently wearable, I wear it. This prevents me from feeling like I'm wasting fabric. Also, what does one do with a muslin if not wear it? Some of the fabric can be reused, but even that creates too much waste for me.
At any rate, the only knit fabric I had was some heavy navy blue stuff that I've had for years. It looked like enough fabric, so I started cutting. I knew I would eventually have to piece some scraps together to make the best use of the fabric, but I didn't plan this out.
Turns out, I have a seam running vertically down the front of the shirt. I would have preferred it to be in the back, but now I like it in the front. It reminds me slightly of the costumes used for aliens that I saw on Star Trek. I also have a seam running horizontally along the right sleeve. Again, I decided to think of this as part of the design. Why get worked up over a stray seam here and there? They add interest and might inspire ideas for ornamentation.
When I sewed up the pattern, I was amazed at how well everything fit together. Even the sleeves fit perfectly into the armhole. I always have trouble with that and end up with some kind of gathering or pleating at the top of the sleeve.
Then I tried on the shirt and, surprisingly, it fit with no alterations needed. Not too tight, not too loose. The proportions are accurate and the shirt drapes the way it is supposed to. Surely it can't be this easy!
I know the true test of the pattern is to make it with different fabric, but I have to save up to buy new fabric before I can try that.
Then I scrounged in my broken jewelry collection and found some tube beads. I sewed these onto the arms to break up the vast navy blankness of this shirt. I would suggest that if you plan to adorn your sleeves and you know they fit, adorn them before you sew them into a tube. Trying to put those beads on in the right spot was a pain. I think it would be easier if I could see and easily get to the underside of the fabric.
Another design element that I changed from the pattern is the neck facing. Instead of sewing it down, I left it sticking up because I like the way it looks a little like a ruffle without being too girly.
The one problem I had with the pattern that I don't know how to fix is the shape of the neckline. I followed the directions as closely as I could, trying to make a rounded neckline. Mine turned out slightly V-shaped. I actually prefer a V-neck, but would like to know how to make a round and a V neckline so that I can choose and know what I am going to get.
For now, I have a new three-quarter-sleeved T-shirt that fits perfectly. At first, I thought I would wear this only around the house, but the more I wear it, the better it looks to me. Now, I wear it out, even when I want to look nice, but not dressed up.
The perfect outfit for this shirt: Non-athletic, colored sneakers; Dark or medium-wash jeans; T-shirt, Sage or grey corduroy jacket; Layers of purple long, beaded necklaces or a chunky violet or lavender necklace; Simple drop purple and copper bead earrings.
Verdict on T-shirt pattern directions: They work!