Eating My Words: 2-2009-108 BWOF Long Sleeved Tee Shirt

I have been snarky about many a sewn tee shirt on the internet. Really, I have. I mean, I *sew*. Why would I make a plain old tee shirt? I have much better skills than that. And, I couldn’t understand why people would make the same tee shirt over and over and over and over when there are sooooo many cute things waiting to be made.

But, I am eating my words. 34 people can’t be wrong, right? I made up this #108, Feb. 2009 Burda from a scant 1.5 yards of knit. The fabric has little red and gray chains going up and down. And, well, I loves it. I love the boatneck. I love the shaping at the waist. I love that it can be made in an hour.

The entire shirt is sewn on my serger with twin needle topstitching. I didn’t make a facing and just turned the edges in by 1/2 inch. I This is a 38 with a 1/2 inch FBA. Oh, I also widened the sleeve at the bicep by a good inch or so. I now double check all Burda sleeves.

I am not a tee shirt person. I think they are simple and kind of boring. I certainly never wear generic tee shirts. Not even to work out in. There are cuter items to be worn when I am sweating. I pretty much sleep and clean in them.

I like this pattern so much I refashioned a Target tee shirt with the same pattern, making it sleeveless.Ā I have one more of the long sleeve version cut out. I’m just waiting to switch serger thread to white. I also have another refashion cut out. Waiting on serger thread to switch to green. Yes, I am totally eating my words. I loves this shirt.


  1. Well, if you’d made the shirt out of some plain cotton/lycra in a basic color like black or dark blue or something like that, then I think you’d probably be right. But that is just a grand shirt – fits great and looks fantastic! Not a shirt anyone would ever find in any store anyplace, anyhow. Something spectacular and unique for less than two hours effort? That rates a ‘woohoo!” for sure. Who cares if it’s a tee shirt? One of the basic reasons we sew is to get stuff that you can’t find in stores.

  2. Unlike you I like simple t shirts and this one is a winner. I need to get one made myself. It’s great refashion as well.

  3. Hmmm, I’ve looked at this one a few times thinking I should make it as a quick and simple ‘instant gratification’ project. And I really like boat necks on me. It’s also a nice simple ground on which to add anthropologie/mod cloth-like embellishments.

    Can you, however, answer a question for me – you say you made the size 12. Would you say it runs true to size? I usually make a sz 12 myself (especially the bottom half of myself) when using their non-stretch patterns. But I lately made 2 knit BWOF tops, and if I had cut a sz 8 in either of them, they would still have been too big!

    Your thoughts, oh learned and experienced, and word-eating one?

    • I’ve discoverd I get a better fit when I size down one in BWOF. I think they do run true to size, but find the knits should be smaller if you’re on the cusp.

  4. Super cute tee! Yeah, I’ve noticed everyone’s been on the tee bandwagon as of late. I need to get moving myself. No need to “eat your words”—–just make more tee’s (smile)!

  5. I don’t know if I should be telling you this but you make that face in the second photo A LOT, LOL!

    My mother wants this top desperately and I’m holding out on her…I’ll never be daughter of the year.

  6. Cute! I love the few I’ve made from the pattern. Hope your words taste yummy! šŸ˜‰

  7. Hee hee! That is super-nice. I make (long sleeve) tees because I’ve never met a ready-to-wear one with long enough sleeves that fit nice in the body. Well, since I was 12 or so, anyway. And really, I can make one up in less time than it would take to shop for it ;).

  8. Celie, where did you get the fabric? I am just entering the wonderful world of knits and am pretty discouraged by how hard it is to find prints that I like. Pointers would be appreciated!

  9. I agree that too many plain old t’s can be boring, but hey we all need basics too. I buy jersey to make mine that is used by an Australia designer Mela Purdie. She charges $100 for a plain tshirt. Of course I’ll sew them up myself! Love your fabric BTW

  10. Cute top! I live in knit tops so I sew them a lot. Who wants to pay over a $100 for a simple knit top? Not me! I sew. šŸ™‚

  11. I remember accepting the challenge of the most difficult Vogue patterns when I was younger. Now I find simple, stylish and fast works much better for me now. I’m going to get this pattern and make a few. Have you tried finding knits with interesting selvedges to finish the neck, sleeve and bottom edge?

    You look great in this!

  12. oh I made this top recently too, even though I don’t usually ‘waste’ my time and skills on a garment that can be easily bought for little money. But I guess Burda got us both good this time! It is a super flattering top, and I think I read somewhere that pear shapes should wear boatneck styles to make our shoulders appear wider and more balanced with our bottom half

  13. I can buy good fabric, and recognize it. A well-made t-shirt from good fabric really does show, and can cost $200. When you consider it usually takes me about an hour to make (faster than doing the laundry), I think that’s very cost-effective. Moreover, I’m used to wearing clothes that fit. That’s priceless.

  14. Grrrr, you little minx, that shirt looks so good and your review of the pattern is so tempting that I’m afraid I’m gonna have to dig out my February 2009 Burda and try one of these for myself! Seriously, if you can make something that cute in less than a couple of hours out of less than two yards of fabrics, what do I have to lose??!!

  15. You look absolutely fabulous in this shirt. I want it, too.Is there a way to get this pattern from Burda, even if one does not have the magazine?

      • I have found ZIP files of Burda online (they are in Russian though) and I think I have this one. I really do like it and it doesn’t really look t-shirty at all. *added to the every growing list of things to *sew*.
        If Shirley wants I can email you the link

  16. Hilarious – I was just totally planning to make the same style boatneck tee with the same exact fabric! Now that I know how good it will look, I’m even more excited! šŸ™‚

  17. Please tell me that this is also an envelope pattern? I’ve been trying to find a t-shirt pattern just like this one. It looks perfect! My last try, a New Look pattern so disappointed me. It’s proportions were so odd with the back being much broader than the front and it also had a center back seam.

  18. I loves that shirt, too! That’s a great print & it looks great on you. I’m going to have to see if the the Burda site offers that pattern as a download.

  19. These look fantastic on you and fit you to a tee! šŸ˜‰ It’s good for us to eat our words once in a while. Happy thanksgiving!

  20. Cute! I’m with you on the t-shirt thing. I don’t even think I own one anymore. I consider what you made more of a fitted knit shirt, which definitely has a place in a wardrobe.

  21. I sort of have the same attitude about sewing t shirts you had. But I’ve got to say this one looks fantastic on you and I love what you did to the Target T shirt.

  22. I’ve just made this shirt too, and also LOVE it!! It’s such a simple and well-fitting design, it’s great for ‘letting the fabric do the talking’!

  23. Both are really cute. I just sewed a few t-shirts myself. They are the ultimate quick, simple project. Sewing yourself offers a few good things is fabric choice and shaping at the waist and hips.

  24. I love your top! I go back and forth on whether or not I want to perfect a t-shirt pattern. On one hand, t-shirt are little boring to sew and readily available in RTW. On the other hand, I often have trouble finding just the right t-shirt (wrong color, wrong length, etc.) so it would be nice to have a tried and true pattern ready and waiting.

  25. I started making long sleeved tees because I didn’t like what I got from the store, and I now have a couple of favorite patterns. I don’t even bother buying them any more. And, like you, I don’t bother with facings; I just turn under the edges and stitch.

    Happy Thanksgiving, Cidell!

  26. The top fits you perfectly. I have to say I LOVE that print with the pinstripe trouser!

  27. That issue to my mind was the best Burda issue EVER. So many desirable patterns! It’s been a downhill slide since then I fear, with the current December issue an absolute nadir…sigh.
    Your tee’s cute, too, BTW!

    • December is pretty abysmal. There’s one dress I might care about, but I know I’ll never actually make it. That’s it. One. I’m holding out for next month’s. I think it’s going to be active / loungewear. It makes me sad. I love Burda! It’s like watching a friend develop a bad habit.

  28. Sometimes you just need to wear something basic so the other pieces shine. But in the right fabric a simple design can look fabo too. Like yours – very nice! Now I must make one too šŸ™‚

  29. Welcome to the dark side of simple tee sewing! Now I need to go and re-visit this pattern after seeing yours!

  30. What a great shirt, T or not! The bateau neckline is wonderful on you…

    I have to ask this obviously, very dumb question…Where’s can I find a copy of this pattern? Are older Burda styles are availabe online? somewhere I’ve not been able to uncover?…I made a Sewing Workshop similar version, but no bueuno. This one’s great!

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