So, last time I made this shirt, I didn't call it anything. I'm officially naming it the "Petal Shirt". I know, creative, right? I didn't inherit my mom's ability to come up with funny pun-y titles.
You'll need a yard of nice soft knit, coordinating thread, some fusible interfacing, and 1/4 inch elastic. Make sure you use a ballpoint needle.
Cut out back and front shirt pieces. The width should be a few inches wider than your person on either side to allow for the drapey bottom. The length needs to allow for a casing at the neckline and hem. The back is on the left and the front is on the right below:
Step 2: Sew the back and the front together at the side seams. Press the arm curves down a half inch to the wrong side and stitch them down.
Step 3: Press the neckline of the front and back down a 1/2 inch and sew it down, creating a casing.
Step 4: Hem the bottom using a 1/2 inch seam allowance but leave an opening to thread your elastic through.
And now you'll have this:
At this point you pretty much have a blank slate for whatever kind of embellishment you want to do. You could use colorful cording for the straps and applique coordinating fabric on the shirt:
Or you could go for a natural look with crocheted details:
But for this tutorial we're going to stick to the petals, which brings us to...
Step 5: Make petals. Fuse together two pieces of knit, wrong sides together. A fat quarter would be more than plenty, an eighth of a yard would probably be enough. From that fused knit sandwich, start cutting out petals. I cut them out in this four-leaf clover type shape. Cut as many as you like, I used 18 for this brown shirt and more for the pink one. For more "movement" on the shirt, you could cut some petals out of non-fused knit and intersperse them among the fused ones. They will tend to flutter and curl up more.
Step 6: Pin them to the shirt in a pleasing manner.
Step 7: Sew them on. As you can see, I just went from one petal to the next without cutting my thread. Make sure you backstitch at the beginning and end of each seam though. I also created a little crease in the middle of each petal before sewing them down so they wouldn't be flat.
Step 8: Make your halter cord by taking a long 1 inch strip of fabric and serging or sewing the long ends right sides together. This will give you a long 1/2 inch tube. Turn the tube right-side-out, thread it through both the back and front casings, tie at the shoulder, and knot the ends.
Thread elastic through the hem casing to fit your hips.
This shirt was a gift for my Jennifer Aniston look-a-like friend.
I think this shirt would be a great gift in general as it is pretty much one size fits most. The halter ties allow you to adjust the length, and by gathering the front and back casings you can make the shirt looser or tighter.
Happy Petal Shirt making!