How to Make a Dress Shirt Larger

Go ahead and keep those favorite shirts that have seen better days in the fit department. And don't worry about buying that perfect shirt that's a bit too small, because with this simple alteration technique, you can make any shirt fit like a glove.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington

Things You'll Need

  • Too small shirt

  • Seam ripper

  • Needle and thread

  • Sharp scissors

  • Pins

Step 1: Remove and reposition sleeve buttons

Remove the buttons on the sleeves with a seam ripper. Then, resew them closer to the edge, which will give your arms much more room to move.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington
Image Credit: Beth Huntington

Step 2: Cut up center back

Cut up the center back of the shirt and stop when you get to the yoke.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington

Step 3: Press raw edges

Press the raw edges under a half an inch.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington

Step 4: Choose an insert fabric

Find some pretty lace or coordinating fabric to insert into the back.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington

Tip

If the fabric you use is from an old shirt, you can make use of the existing hem and place that at the bottom of the shirt.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington

Step 5: Pin insert fabric into opening

With the right sides of both fabrics facing up, pin the coordinating fabric under the opening you made in the back.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington

Step 6: Sew

Sew down both sides of the opening, close to each edge.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington

Step 7: Trim

Trim the extra fabric from the inside of the shirt, and leave a half-inch seam allowance.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington

Step 8: Enjoy!

Now, you not only have a shirt that fits and isn't busting at the seams, but one that's pretty in the back, too.

Image Credit: Beth Huntington
Image Credit: Beth Huntington
Image Credit: Beth Huntington