Colorblock shirt

Colorblock Shirt 
I love transforming clothing…. Clothing from Goodwill, things that don’t fit anymore or that you don’t want and can serve another purpose.  I found this great tutorial and thought I would make a couple of shirts for my son.  It’s a pretty simple project that can be personalized to suit you.


  • 2 shirts (that you previously own or you can buy)
  • a long sleeve shirt (optional)
  • an applique
  • sewing machine, pins and such

1. I bought two plain shirts from Walmart, not very expensive.  
Colorblock Shirt 
*I didn’t get to take a picture of the shirts for this post before I assembled them, but these are the kind I used.

2. Measure up from the bottom of the shirt where you want your color block to start.  Use a ruler to mark a straight line across and do the same for the other.

3.  Carefully cut across your line on each shirt using a rotary cutter.

4. Switch the bottoms of each shirt with the other and match them up.  Match up the right side of the top with the right side of the bottom.  If there are any side seams, match them together first.  Pin as you go along.

5.  With the shirt still inside out, sew your new seams together.  Careful not to catch any other parts of the shirt you’re not supposed to.  I used 1/4 inch seam.
Colorblock Shirt Colorblock Shirt

6.  Iron your seam down.  And you will have two complete shirts when this is done.
Colorblock Shirt


Adding Applique 

I found this great appliqué at JoAnn Fabrics on clearance and was holding on to it for the right project.  My kiddo loves Charlie Brown!
Colorblock Shirt Colorblock Shirt

1. There was a layer of stabilizer on the appliqué.  I carefully cut out the stabilizer backing portion so that the appliqué would not be so stiff on the shirt.

2. Pin the appliqué to the desired spot on the shirt.
Colorblock Shirt

3. Sew the appliqué onto the shirt.  Use a small zigzag stitch and carefully sew onto the edge of the appliqué.  Sew completely around the appliqué until it is fully attached. 

Colorblock Shirt


Adding Sleeves

I found this waffle knit shirt at my local Goodwill with a half price tag… perfect for projects like these.
Colorblock Shirt

1. First grab a long sleeve shirt for comparison and place it over one of the shirts you just made to measure how long the sleeves need to be.
Colorblock Shirt Colorblock Shirt
Since this is a mock undershirt, I measure the length needed for the sleeve (8 3/4 inches)

2. I measured seam on the shirt we are attaching the sleeves to.
Colorblock Shirt
The shirt will be inserted up the the left seam line and be sewn on the right seam line.  (I measured in 3/4 inch)

3.  If you desire to have your sleeves a little longer still, add an extra 1 – 1.5 inches.  So the length of the sleeve is 8 3/4 + 3/4 +(additional length if desired)…  I added 1.5 inches so the total length to cut was at 11 inches.  Measure, mark and cut the sleeves.
Colorblock Shirt    

4.  Here’s a tricky part… I’m not an avid seamstress or anything, so explaining some of this is a bit difficult…  Place the cut sleeve part into your short sleeve shirt and pin it in place.
Colorblock Shirt   

 Colorblock Shirt 

4.  Sewing the sleeves is also a bit tricky.  You can do this by hand if you wish.  I went ahead and battled with my sewing machine to get the best stitch.  Sew on the right side carefully placing your shirt in a manner where you can sew the sleeve on and not get the rest of the shirt caught.
Colorblock Shirt
See, how do you explain this mess… Just do your best and try not to sew your sleeve to the wrong part of your shirt…

And when it’s all done…
Colorblock Shirt
Totally worth the battle to get those sleeves on! This will be a Christmas present for my lil man, can’t wait to see it on him!





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