Several years ago, Peter at Male Pattern Boldness did a shirt sew-a-long that I participated in. I learned a lot about making shirts, especially why my previous attempts were sometimes good and sometimes disastrous…it’s all about the thought you put into it, not just whipping through it and making do.
From him, I learned about making a muslin out of a pattern, and while I still have trouble doing that, because it seems such a waste, I did pick a pattern for Rob and a pattern for me and I made the muslins and I fitted them and edited the pattern, so we both have a pattern that I know will fit well. I can make an endless variety of shirts from that.
But, before I really understood that, I bought several men’s shirt patterns. I’m not sure why. They’re all basically the same. One is different; Vogue 8759.
It has some details I want to try.
Notice in view C that there are two seams that run down the back, making it a total of three pieces. And, you can see the seam up the sleeve. Each sleeve is made of two pieces so the sleeve placket doesn’t have to be slashed in the middle of the sleeve. This intrigues me.
The shirt I was planning to make in the shirt sew-a-long was going to be from this beautiful rust colored linen. I ended up making two wearable muslins and never got back to the original linen dress shirt. I made other shirts, but not this, even though the fabric was pressed and ready and waiting. So, last week, while I was occupying the living room floor to cut my robe, I cut this shirt out, too.
I am ready to start this weekend. Just in time for a little presie for me. Hopefully, this will be the last shirt made from inappropriate weight fabric. This linen is just a tiny bit too heavy for a shirt, but I plan to trundle on anyway.
Now that I’ve made several shirts and had the chance to really look at them, I’ve learned that shirts should be made from lighter weight fabric than quilting cotton. Quilting cotton is stiff, no matter how light the interfacing is. It tends not to mold and shape. Lighter weight fabrics work better and are much closer to ready to wear and are more comfortable.
I found fabric.com, so I don’t feel restricted to Jo-Ann’s shirting shelf with it’s 7 bolts of plaid fabric anymore.
I have other fabrics to try, for me, for Rob, and for Sydney.
Now, imagine, if I could only find the time to both quilt and sew AND make a bit of money, I’d be all set. As it is, I squeeze my garment making in between my quilting and all my other stuff and barely have time to enjoy any of it.
Okay, that’s not right. I enjoy it immensely, or I wouldn’t keep trying it.
I have Friday off as another mental health day and I hope to finish my shirt so I can wear it to dinner Saturday night. Or, maybe it will just become a muslin, stored in a plastic baggie forever, because it’s too heavy to wear. In that case, I have a lovely butternut broadcloth that would be stunning in this pattern.
Does the use of “lovely” and “stunning” in the same sentence make me look gay?
If you’re not familiar with Peter, just google “men who sew”. He is the man that shows up. Just about the only man. Why don’t more men talk about sewing? I know more of us do it. Speak up, men! We need you! Put down that remote and prove your diversity!
Be well. Have a great Wednesday.