How to Make Your Own Singlets

smile man in underwaist image by Pavel Losevsky from

Creating your own clothing allows you to express creativity and your own personal style; it's also a popular hobby. Singlets can keep you warm in winter or provide a light wrap by themselves to keep cool in summer. Personalized singlets make great gifts as well, and you can even make tiny singlets for baby-shower gifts. You don’t need expert sewing skills to make singlets, but you will need to know your way around a sewing machine.

Singlet From Scratch

Double your fabric over, wrong side out, and iron flat. Draw a rectangle on the fabric that is 2-inches wider and 2-inch longer than the desired length and width of your singlet. Make the fold of the fabric on the top side of the rectangle. Measure from the top of your shoulder down to your hips (or however long you want the singlet) for the length; measure from hip-to-hip for the width.

Decide how wide and deep you want the neck of your singlet to be. Generally the neck of a singlet is mid-chest depth and as wide as the distance between the mid-points of your shoulders. Make these measurements to determine your neck dimensions. Measure and mark the center of the top side of your rectangle. Scribe an arc that is an inch less wide and deep than the desired width and depth of your neck.

Decide how long and thick you want your singlet straps to be. Measure the width plus two inches out from each side of the neck. Measure the length of the straps minus an inch along the sides of the rectangle. Draw an arc between these two points. You will now have the outline of your singlet with added seam allowances.

Cut out the outline. Both sides should join at the top of the singlet straps where the fold of the fabric was. Fold a double half-inch hem on all the raw edges and pin in place. Pin the sides of the fabric together, but leave the bottom, neck and straps separate.

Sew along the seam of the sides first. Sew the bottom of the singlet next—it should be a loop. Sew the arm holes and then the neck holes. Remove all the pins and turn the singlet right-side out. Your homemade singlet is complete.

"Cheat" Singlet

Choose an old or favorite T-shirt that you want to give new life to as a singlet. Place your example singlet over the T-shirt after you have laid it flat on your work surface. Make sure the top of the straps align with the top of the shoulders of the T-shirt.

Trace the outline of the singlet’s neck and straps onto the T-shirt with the pencil or tailor’s chalk, allowing around an inch extra for the seams.

Cut around the outline of the singlet you traced. Fold under a double quarter-inch seam along the straps and neck then sew together to complete your "cheat," easy-as-pie singlet.