Lately I've been lusting after the ruffly, feminine shirts of the J. Crew and anthropologie fall collections. Yet, last time I checked, my budget doesn't include a line item for $90 shirts. Never fear - that's what the thrift store is for! I purchased this hideously ugly "pirate shirt" for $3 at the Deseret Industries on 7th South and State-ish. It was too large for me (a size medium) and had huge shoulder pads. Here's how I took it from pirate to poetically pretty.
First, I put the shirt on my duct tape dress form. See? I told you it was ugly!
After stitching the sides, I tried the shirt on. I decided to take it in just a little more, so I sewed it again and serged the old edge. I then tried it on again to see how much of the sleeves I wanted to remove. Being the lazy person that I am, I didn't bother with hemming or creating a facing for the sleeves (it's difficult to do on a shirt that started out too large, anyway). Instead, I simply cut the sleeves and serged the raw edges. I intend to always wear this shirt under a cardigan, so that's a perfect solution for me.
Here's the finished product: