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Class Reviews > Build a Better Tee Shirt

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Posted by: ryan's mom

About ryan's mom starstarstarstar
Member since: 11/30/04
Reviews: 132 (classes: 5)
Skill level:Advanced
Favored by: 52 people
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Posted on: 9/21/06 9:52 AM
Rating: starstarstar
Review Rating: Helpful by 1 people   Very Helpful by 17 people   
Web site/URL: Build a Better T-SHIRT
First off, this is an AWESOME class! Build a Better Tee is more than learning about better constructions methods, rather it is a fitting AND construction class rolled into one. Shannon has all participants make a woven muslin (yes, I did say woven!) for making t-shirts, which can be converted (with ease amounts) for either a woven or knit t-shirts.

The class participants can choose from a t-shirt pattern of their choice and make the woven muslin from that. Shannon will help the participants make pattern alterations to create a well-fitted tee. A digital camera is a necessity (IMO) to obtain the best possible fit from the tee during this class.

The class runs about 2-3 weeks long, and I think most of us will need that entire block of time unless you have the pattern model's figure. Shannon will help you with the bodice fit, then progress to the sleeves. And, of course, she is always available via email to help finish up the tee's after the class is finished if you can't finish your tee in the timeframe for the class.

For this class I used Pamela's Perfect Tee pattern. I worked with that during late spring/early summer and cranked out about 5 or 6 t-shirts from it, really working with tailoring the fit and creating different styles with patternmaking principles. At least two things I still had issues with--too much fullness in the lower back, and the diagonal dragline from bust to waist/side hem on the front. With Shannon's advice I was able to learn how to remove that diagonal dragline and how to manipulate my back fisheye darts (in three different ways!) to make them "disappear". This information is priceless!

This class has SO much information with special lessons included as per the request of the class participants.

Lessons included:

1. Introduction
2. Lesson One: Proper measurements
3. Part one, Lesson two: Pattern Alterations Front and Back
4. Part one, Lesson three: Muslin one, Front and Back, for wovens
5. The Full Bust Adjustment
6. More Details on Correcting the Armhole
7. Sleeves: Fitting, Correcting the pattern and determining lengths
8. What about the Dart?
9. From Wovens to Knits
10. Part two: Construction
11. Lesson eight: Cutting, Marking and Interfacing
12. Lesson nine, Seams, finishes, and hems
13. Lesson nine, Part two: Easing dart control, setting in sleeves and putting in zippers
14. Part Three: Introduction
15. Neckline changes, v-neck, boatneck, and others
16. Lesson Ten: Neckline finishes and trims

These, I believe, were all the "bonus" lessons that were created by special request from the class participants. Look at all these beauties!

The Henley/Polo Placket
Removing a fisheye dart...and retaining the shaping
Double front/half-double front
A couple of style options (includes v-neck w/ tie and slit neck w/eyelets)
Drafting a cowl neck
Full Bust Adjustment n a wrap top
Wrap front tee
Raising the cap of a set-in sleeve
Changing the shoulder width

In conclusion, this is another "must-take" class in the Shannon Gifford series. Although it can definitely be taken at any time, I would recommend taking Patternmaking, Making a Muslin, then the Build a Better Tee class in that order. That's my own personal preference though. You don't have to take the others, but it does help maximize your understanding of the what's and why's of pattern alterations.

Bottom line: If you're truly interested in getting your fitting issues under control, take every class in the above paragraph. This particular class, Build a Better Tee Shirt, has been excellent to specifically resolve fitting issues for t-shirts.

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Boatlady said... (2/14/08 3:49 PM) Reply
Great review. I've always been a bit leery of internet classes. May just give it a try.
MN sunrise said... (10/17/06 0:01 AM) Reply
I appreciate the extra tips she's included. It helps me to decide which class to take in which order. Thanks much!!
Peggym said... (9/30/06 6:55 PM) Reply
Great review absolutely correct. I learned so much too at this class. Shannon is a great teacher and encourager
Sew'n'go said... (9/25/06 12:58 PM) Reply
Now I'm doublely sorry I didn't take this class! Thanks for the informative review.
PVA said... (9/22/06 11:02 AM) Reply
I endorse every single statement in this review, I couldn't say it any better myself! I have a *Big* binder stuffed full of everything I need to make all the possible variations of a T-Shirt to fit me, even if my body changes drastically. (Whoo-Hooo!)
pterion said... (9/22/06 9:58 AM) Reply
Thanks for the review - you sold me!
milwaukee_kelly said... (9/22/06 9:18 AM) Reply
I love Shannon! Great review. I'll be taking this the next time it's offered.
Donna H said... (9/22/06 0:33 AM) Reply
Thanks for this great review. I need to look into taking a class here. The Making a Muslin would be a great place for me to start. Thanks again.
Mufffet said... (9/21/06 3:31 PM) Reply
ABSOLUTELY! RIGHT ON! I couldn't have put it better myself! I might recommend "Making a Muslin" as the first in line though because even a beginner could take that and learn something useful right away as she/he starts sewing. Shannon is an understanding, inspiring teacher.
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