Nettie, Nettie, Nettie

Today I’m writing about yet another of my TNT patterns — the Nettie shirt.

Nettie by Closet Case FIles sewn by Katie @

Nettie, Nettie, Nettie

Technically, Nettie is a bodysuit by Heather from Closet Case Files, but I’m not really into the whole bodysuit thing.  However, Nettie’s nice, slim shape lends itself very well to a t-shirt, and it’s basically the easiest mod in the world!

And before anyone tells me oh I should try the bodysuit before dissing it, I really might like it, I can say that I am speaking from experience.  My first three Netties I actually made as bodysuits and wore them that way for several months.  I realized after a while that I was avoiding them because they were bodysuits and I detested wearing them with the snap crotches, all the extra material, etc.  Blech.  So, I cut them off into t-shirts and they’ve been in steady rotation ever since!

Nettie by Closet Case FIles sewn by Katie @

This black t-shirt is one of my first Netties, which started its life as a bodysuit. I cut it off, hemmed it and now wear it regularly.

To make Nettie into a t-shirt, I simply cut the bodice off at the hip right where the pattern starts to form the bodysuit crotch.  I didn’t need to lengthen the pattern at all — this length makes about the perfect t-shirt for me.  However, since I began sewing I have realized that I am somewhat short-waisted, so I imagine that many women will want to add an inch or two of length to the bodice if making a t-shirt.

I have also seen others complain, and Heather has admitted, that the Nettie is drafted with relatively narrow shoulders.  I don’t find this to be a problem, but I am a rather petite person.  This is definitely something to pay attention to if you tackle Nettie — I know it was a big issue for my friend Julie who has very broad shoulders.

Nettie by Closet Case FIles sewn by Katie @

Back view on the floral. I chose the mid back for this one — the others all have a standard high back.

I’ve made 4 Nettie t-shirts to date. Three of them are plain ol’ solid-color t-shirts, so I didn’t see the need to bore you with all of them.  I love the fabrics I used for these tops.  The solid t-shirts are all made with bamboo jersey from Michael Levine.  This stuff is soft and stretchy and makes the most heavenly t-shirts.

The floral is a great jersey from Wanderlust fabrics (sorry, it’s long gone).  I love this shirt, but I do kind of wish I’d made the back higher and used a bamboo jersey for a low-backed shirt.  While this fabric is nice quality, it doesn’t have quite the stretch recovery of the bamboo, and tends to look stretched out after its been worn a while.

Well, I think that about does it on this one.  This has become a great TNT t-shirt pattern for me.  I like my t-shirts to be close fitting and Nettie fits the bill nicely.  Next up — a Nettie dress!

Nettie by Closet Case FIles sewn by Katie @


Pattern: Nettie by Closet Case Files.

Size: 8.

Fabric: The black is bamboo jersey from Michael Levine.  The floral is a rayon jersey from Wanderlust fabrics.

Difficulty: Beginner.  I can attest that a beginner can sew this pattern because my friend Crystal made one during our sewing weekend and it was one of her first garments.  And her first-ever knit project.

Techniques required: Sewing knits, hemming knits, sewing bands, sewing curved seams on knits, setting in sleeves on knits.

Similar patterns: Oh any number of patterns could get you the same look.  I’m sure all of the Big 4 have numerous t-shirt patterns.  The Deer & Doe Plantain could be slimmed down for a very similar look.  Also Maria Denmark’s Birgitte Tee.

Modifications: Cut off at the hip to make a t-shirt.

Fit: Great on me.  I love the close fit and scooped neckline.  However, I know others have had fit issues.

Pattern Format: PDF pattern.  Not fabulous but not terrible.  Heather has done a good job getting lots of pattern pieces (for all of the different views) onto a reasonable number of pages.


  • Great basic wardrobe builders.
  • Lots of options — bodysuit, dress, or cut it off for a t-shirt.
  • Lots of variations in neckline, arm length, etc.  You can use this pattern to make shirts with very different looks.


  • The bodysuit isn’t my particular cup of tea.  But that’s easily fixed.
  • I know a lot of people have fit issues with this pattern, especially through the shoulders.
  • This pattern isn’t particularly earth-shattering if you just want a basic t-shirt pattern.  Any number of free patterns, or Big 4 that you could pick up at a Joann’s or Hancocks mega-sale would give the same effect.

Overall Grade: B.  This is a great TNT pattern for me, but I honestly wouldn’t recommend spending the money if you just want a basic t-shirt pattern.  Something much cheaper or even free would serve the purpose just as well.  If you’re drawn to the other views, like the bodysuit or dress, or the neckline variations, then this might be worth the money.

**I purchased everything used in this post with my own money.


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