Short-sleeved Flashback Tee!

Spring is here and I’ve been starting to think about the boy’s warm-weather wardrobe. Starting with a short-sleeved Flashback Tee!





The one was made with the size 5T of the Flashback Tee Sewing Pattern and an organic 1×1 rib knit from Near Sea Naturals (remember when I bought those swatches?). Love the stripes and how super-soft this is. Elliot LOVES it. He’s just turned five a couple weeks ago so the fit is just a little big. Room to grow for my average-sized kid. Although he’s looking rather skinny in these pictures. No more baby fat, waaaah!

Making a short-sleeved tee from a long-sleeved pattern is so easy! And it’s no big secret: you could do this with ANY long-sleeved pattern piece. Here’s a quick how-to:



Step 1: Cut the sleeve pattern piece

You need to shorten the sleeve pattern piece (which is for a long-sleeved tee) to a short sleeve pattern piece. For toddlers, this means cutting the pattern off somewhere between 1 (for the smaller sizes) and 2 inches (for the larger sizes) below the armpit. It doesn’t really have to be exact; you can always start longer and cut more off if you don’t like how it looks. But to me a skinny tee looks silly with a longer sleeve. Important: make sure that your new line is perpendicular to the grain/fold line.

Note: With this tee I trimmed an additional 1/2″ off before adding the cuff, so If you do the math that’s the same as cutting it 1.5″ below the armpit to start with for the 5T size.

OK, so now you need to cut out your two sleeve pieces on the fold with your new short-sleeve pattern piece, and cut the rest of the pieces of the shirt as usual.


Step 2: Assemble the tee

Sew the tee together according to the instructions, except leave the ends of the sleeves for now. I’d suggest trying the tee on your child at this point to see how long the sleeve looks. Trim the sleeve more if necessary, and don’t forget that the cuff will add another 1/2″ yet. If you want to, though, you could just hem the sleeves now and be done!

Step 3: Cut the cuff pieces

Cut two 2″ wide strips of rib knit for the sleeve cuff. The folded length of the cuff pieces should be 1″ shorter than the width of the folded sleeve (see photo). This will make it nice and fitted on the arm.


Step 4: Sew the ends of the cuff together

I used a 1/4″ seam allowance here.


Step 5: Attach the cuffs to the sleeve

Follow the instructions to attach the cuff as given in the sewing instructions, but use a 1/4″ seam allowance.


Voila! Finished short sleeved tee!

Step 6: Put on child so he can go pester his sister.



20 thoughts on “Short-sleeved Flashback Tee!

  1. I am LOVING the photo of E sticking out his tongue and making zombie arms. Poor Clementine.

    Afraid to break it to you, but: all your photos of him for the next year or so (unless candid shots, you know, while he’s sleeping) will look like this 😉

    Good thing he’s so darned cute!

  2. I love his hair so much in the last few shots! The shirt is great – I may try a few this year. It’s sort of sad when boys lose baby fat – I can hardly wait until my 13yo loses the skinny look – he’s starting to broaden out thru his shoulders, but photos make him look emaciated & gawky. sigh, the “pains” of growing them up.

  3. Those last pictures of your little man dancing around are hilarious! And thanks for the link to where you got your fabric, I’ve been on the hunt for some super soft knits for little baby clothes.

  4. GUH!!! E bumping C!! He is hilarious and her reaction?! Priceless. (The shirt is great, too!)

  5. This could be my favorite shirt EVER! Love it!
    Question: Will this pattern ever come in bigger sizes, like 6-8 or something?

    • I wonder the same thing! Rae, I would buy this pattern in a heart beat if it came in a couple more sizes.

  6. My husband saw this shirt and asked if I could make him one in his size…Haha. Love the pics!

  7. Wow, I thought only my son could pester his sisters with such gusto. Guess he is normal after all. 😉
    Love the shirt! I have never had luck with knits, but when I see your cute and “easy” projects I always feel like I should give it another try. It’s back on my To-Learn list!

  8. OMG those photos of them both together are cracking me up. That E is a total throwback kid – he’d look right at home in the ’70s or ’80s! Such a cutie.

  9. I really love the look of this shirt–the colors, the pattern, everything. It’s adorable, but not cutesy-cutesy. Ya know? And, as always, love this pattern. I really need to make some more.

  10. I love the shirt and can’t wait to get started on mine next week for KCWC. I am going to have a Made By Rae sewing week because I am also going to sew up a Charlie Dress as well!

  11. I’m definitely going to purchase this pattern to make for my 1 year old and 3 year old Granddaughters, please do the 6-14 sizes as I know a my 6 year old Granddaughter and 10 year old Grandson would love these t-shirts.

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