Introduction: Instructables Robot Hockey Shirt
Team Ibles. Now get the puck outta here.
What is more Fn manlier than getting geared up for a game of hockey...or not? There are no couch potato makers. Well, you need an authentic team jersey to give you that aggressive and imposing look when you go up against the other team. Missing a few teeth helps too.
What is more manlier than knowing how to sew? Knowing how to sew your own hockey shirt from scratch without losing a limb or taking an eye out.
My favorite scrappy underdog team is the Mighty Robot Ducks, the Bad News AutoBears take to the ice or roll out a new update. So get ready to sharpen your skates, oh ok, if you only have figure skates, put them on...
DISCLAIMER: Blame Canada.
Step 1: Hit the Ice, Wait, the Mall for Shopping...
What you need to make this:
Fabric. I found some cotton/poly blend poplin fabric that felt sturdy enough to make the jersey. Not as satiny as expensive silk boxers but it will do.
You can really go all out and select a sport performance stretch knit fabric but I can't afford the stuff at Mood.( Almost got kicked out of there for going up and down every aisle and felting up all the fabrics)
I found my classic Robot Yellow and a muted Robot Safety Blaze Orange at my local discount fabric store.
Knits are a lot harder to work with because they can get drag and stretch in the sewing machine.
You need some black material to use for trim.
You also need some white and red material to complete the palette used for this design.
You need some pieces of felt to make the sew on emblems.
You need some iron on interfacing to stiffen up the pieces used to make applique patches. That stuff you can buy in rolls or by cut at the fabric store. The greatest thing since the invention of a seam ripper tool.
You will need to know some sewing basics.
A sewing machine makes short work of things. A serger makes things go even faster since it trims and binds the seam in one pass.
Since I am making custom applique logo patches to put on the jersey, I had a felting needle tool and brush felting base to use.
WARNING: Sewing needles, scissors, rotary cutters, and seam rippers are sharp and pointy. Do not run with a yardstick nor use a drywall square as a pole vaulting pole. Sewing machines and sergers should only be used under proper supervision and subject to child labor laws or regulations. Know your tools and be safe.
Step 2: Pushing Off on the Right Track...
As always, this project is what I made as I went along. Professional and pro-sumer sewers/sewists might advise otherwise but I like to think of my work as rapid prototyping. If something comes out wonky, get the seam ripper tool out and make it right. Do not be afraid to just go with the flow and see the magic happen.
Research a bit to see what a hockey jersey looks like.
Check out the prices to get one and realize you can do it yourself for a lot less, maybe.
The general idea is to make the measurements based loosely on that of your favorite manly sweatshirt. Just make it bigger and similar in shape. A genuine hockey shirt is sort of kimono T-shirt shaped so it will be easy to replicate. Real oval hole sleeves are a lot tougher to do and pattern.
You only need to get one yoke in this ible...
Start this project with maybe a sketch in mind of your overall design.
Yes, a good color block design is fashionable and acceptable in this instance.
The hockey shirt will be embellished with logo, appliqued player name and team number afterwards.
Have a patch of material that is 8" by 28", which is the width of the shirt. As with all final measurements. allow for about 1/4 inch or more for seam allowance. I am using a serger so it will trim off the rough cut excess as it binds the seam with the overlock stitch. A serger is also great to mate up pieces of material to make a patchwork material to use. Anyone remember Team La Vie Claire with the Mondrian print?
You can do all the seaming with a regular straight stitch machine. You will need the regular sewing machine to do things the serger can't get to. A nice zig-zag satin stich "embroiders" on our felt pieces to make applique patches.
Fold it in half to find the center to cut out a triangular shaped hole about 7 inches wide by 7 inches deep.
You should be able to fit your head through. Ask someone to tell you if you are getting a big head or not and adjust to fit.
Take a strip of knit, ribbed knits look best, to create a tube of stretch fabric that will be the soft collar.
Serge around and attach it to the collar hole. Experiment to see how you serge off the start/end point of the V or overlap the ends to seal off with a seam.
You should now have the top part of your hockey shirt to base all the other parts like the main body and sleeves.
Step 3: Busy As a Bee...
Figure out where you are going to put stripes of color for your hockey shirt.
They could always be appliqued or applied over a base shirt of a single piece of material.
The method I used was to serge the stripes as they occur to form a single piece of material.
Know how to work fabric so that you get the good finished side on the outside and have all the seams done on the inside.
Step 4: Front and Center...
Now that you have built up the front and back pieces to the shirt, you have something like a poncho to try out for size.
Now is a good time to start making and putting on the player name, team number and any other fun stuff.
For the front, I wanted the Instructables Robot logo. I was thinking to recreate that as a felt patch but it was too much work.
I just went with the inkjet printed iron-on transfer route.
I did felt a hockey stick to apply to the transferred image. You can cut little pieces of felt and just blend them at the joints with the felting needle tool(extremely sharp and jabby). Felting purists and true fiber art artists would say use real wool roving but felt or pieces of yarn work just as well. If you are getting into felting, get the dense brush base that you use to support your felting work. It makes it easier to peel off the fuzzed work than using a piece of foam which gets little bits of disintegrated foam incorporated to your work.
Cut out the team number and the player's name out of felt sheets. It would have been handy to have a lasercutter or a Silhouette pattern cutter machine. Maybe you can win one in one of ibles' fine contests.
Do as I say and not as I did. Use a heavy duty felt for the cutouts or laminate sheets of felts to make your cutouts. You could also iron on interfacing which stiffens up the felt. I got lazy and omitted that step. I used a wide zigzag satin stitch on my sewing machine to "embroider" and applique the felt pieces on to the shirt. I taped them in place with masking tape. I do not like using pins. I used an old roll of masking tape so it was kinda sticky and pulled off some felt fibers. When you sew around thin felt, it puckers and stretches. My precision font cutting after sewing made the letters look smaller. I guess for cold weather there is shrinkage. You do know there is shrinkage, right?
Sew on some black fabric spots for robot rivets.
Step 5: If You Could Pull Off the Sleeves...
Now we can build up material for the robot arms or the sleeves.
The sleeves flattened out are rectangular and then taper up to the cuff.
They should be about 12 inches wide at the armhole and tapering out to the cuff which is about 8 inches wide.
Make the top half of the sleeve first which is just an extension of the yoke. This allows us not to really measure anything but do it by eye.
The top of the sleeve is overlaid on the yoke and trimmed to a semicircle shape at the end. Cut out the material on the yoke a seam allowance diameter smaller than the outline of the round sleeve end. That matching seam is serged together to give a fancy semicircular seam.
Once the two sleeve tops are attached. Cut out the filler pieces for the rest of the sleeve.
The yellow triangular part as an accent color was actually being frugal and using any leftover material scraps which fit.
Serge the pieces to complete the material for the sleeve.
Sew on a black fabric spot on the arm for the robot rivet at the shoulder.
Step 6: Come Together Now...
Time to seam the entire monstrosity together.
Serge the sides and the sleeves together.
The cuff is folded back and serged around on the inside.
Add a fight strap to the hockey shirt.
It is used to hook on to your hockey pants which has a loop to pass the strap through. This is so the guys on the ice cannot pull the wool over your eyes and lift up or grab your hockey jersey. I'm guessing the Canadian in the office gets pantsed instead. Often.
Add an official Instructables Robot patch. That's authenticity there.
So go out and make your own. Be nice on the ice.