Shirtmaking is one of my favorite types of sewing. (Tailoring is a close second, but much more work.)
I am extremely fortunate to live less than a mile from Mood Fabrics so, when I decided to make my partner, Michael, a shirt, I invited him to visit Mood with me. He was a bit overwhelmed by their huge selection of cotton shirting, but I helped him to narrow down his choices. His favorite was this beautiful cotton ribbon print, very much in the Liberty of London vein. (You can shop for cotton shirting at Mood Fabrics online here.)
For Michael’s shirt, I used a vintage Seventies men’s shirt pattern, Butterick 5579. I often use vintage men’s shirt patterns because they’re easy to find on sites like Ebay and Etsy and tend to be more fitted than many contemporary patterns. If you know your size (they’re mainly one-size-per-envelope, though this one included two sizes) they’re very easy to use. The only changes I made to the pattern were to shape the bottom hem (it was drafted to be straight across), add an inch to the sleeve length, and use a traditional sleeve placket instead of a continuous lap placket (which is more commonly found on women’s blouses). I also used a contrasting solid for the inside collar stand and cuff — I love that extra detail. Mother of pearl buttons add an elegant finishing touch.
Michael loves his new shirt. I was originally going to make it a short sleeve shirt, but I think a long sleeve shirt is more formal looking and better suited to this print, don’t you? Plus he can always roll up his sleeves and expose those contrast cuffs!
I enjoy sewing for myself but it is just as satisfying to sew for others. Isn’t it? Isn’t it?
See you in September!