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Nov 30, 2011

Michael's new (vintage) Butterick shirt!



Readers, has this ever happened to you?

I wasn't feeling much like sewing yesterday so I decided I'd do some ironing instead.   I started with the vintage cotton floral fabric, freshly laundered, that I intended to use (eventually) to make Michael a shirt, most likely from Butterick 3995, one of the patterns I featured yesterday.



Since the iron was already hot, I decided to press my pattern pieces flat too.



Then, seeing as there weren't that many pieces, I decided to cut them out (the pattern, from 1957, was unused).  Then I figured I might as well cut my fabric out too.   I also replaced my rotary cutter blade -- second time ever.



Long story short, approximately ten hours later, I'd basically finished the shirt.  (I hemmed it this morning.)  Sometimes it really does help to "just put one foot in front of the other," like on Santa Claus is Coming to Town.


Compared to many shirt patterns, this one was easy, especially if you skip the front welt pocket (Are they kidding?).  I generally don't put pockets on men's shirts, but if I did, I'd use a patch pocket and save myself a few precious hours.

This pattern is for a short-sleeved shirt, so there were no sleeve plackets.  Furthermore, there's no front button placket (the shirt has fold-back facings), and no collar stand.  In many ways it is similar to Colette's Negroni pattern.  There's simply not that much that can go wrong.



Like Negroni, it even has a little button loop at the collar.



For a novelty cotton shirt like this, I skipped true flat-felled seams and serged or overcast my side and shoulder seams and stitched them down from the outside, to create the same look.  The result is just as strong and way faster.  I'll only fuss for a fancy dress shirt at this point.







This shirt has some cute vintage details you don't see anymore.  I'm particularly fond of the shape of the back collar, which buttons down.



By the way, those buttons are vintage too, picked out by Michael from my button stash.



At the hemline, the front facings were stitched down before turning, and then the entire bottom hem simply pressed up.  I then turned the top edge under 1/4" and edgestitched.





And that, friends, is the story of how I made Michael a shirt in just one day.  Well, one day plus a half hour this morning.



I admit that unanticipated sewing success really does put me in a better mood; it shouldn't.  It also earns me some points with Michael, so the next time we have a sink full of dirty dishes....

You get the idea!

Happy Wednesday, everybody, and happy sewing.

More shirt project photos here.

44 comments:

  1. Nice job, Peter! I love that fabric and the pattern details.

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  2. i adore Michael's new shirt and the back of the collar button detail is fabulous; what's not to love about this shirt???

    I've had to shelve my tunic to start miss19s graduation blouse, which was shelved tonight while i do a quick alteration on another of her blouses to wear at an interview tomorrow; the things you do for love!!

    As always, a fabulous read :)

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  3. Great shirt! Michael looks so happy in it too.

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  4. Fantastic shirt! I love the fabric; it looks terrific on Michael.

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  5. It came out beautiful! And so quick. Inspired by sewing for your man, or was the sink already full when you started? :D

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  6. Beautiful shirt, looks great on Michael. I'm inspired, timed to pick up the sewing machine the cats toppled over---the kids Christmas pj's aren't going to sew themselves...

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  7. Fabulous and I have that exact same pattern which I am definitely going to make for my OH now I know it's an easy one!

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  8. Just beautiful! From Michael's smile to the fabric, collar detail, vintage buttons and putting one step in front of the other!

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  9. That is lovely! Great material, and I love the little details (how about that button-down collar!).
    You should change your rotary cutter blades more often, remember how good it felt after you changed it!
    And how often do yu change the needles in your machine?
    Anyway, it is a fabulous shirt, lovely material.

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  10. That is a fabulous shirt and Michael looks smashing in it! I love the fabric (gorgeous!) and the neat button at the collar back. Fantastic!

    Well done, Peter!

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  11. I agree; delightful shirt, and it looks great on Michael!

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  12. He looks really good. I like that color on him. And it will be wonderful in the warmer weather later on. ;-)

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  13. Beautiful (nice smile, Michael, btw) and you made the pattern match up perfectly on the pleat. Amazing. And, ots, you need candles in those empty candle holders for feng shui reasons! Don't light them, just have them.

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  14. Love the shirt - that fabric looks great.

    I often have a "just iron the fabric" moment that turns into a complete garment. Yesterday, just ironing a Burda pattern sheet turned into the cutting out of five garments. None sewn yet, but I suspect that "just thread the machine" will turn into at least one sewn in the next day or so.

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  15. Impressive turn-around on this one. You make it look so easy.

    Never mind have your very own male model (who can SING!) to showcase your abilities with men's patterns.

    Perhaps Michael will get an out-on-the-town photo shoot one of these days? Those are the best!

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  16. I wanted to but he was too busy, do you believe it?

    Thanks, guys!

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  17. It's a beautiful shirt, perfect for walking down a street with an icecream cone. Is Micheal going to start blogging again, or is that a long lost dream?

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  18. You can see why Michael grabbed that piece of vintage cotton. It's the perfect colour for him. Great job on the shirt! Was it last year that you were fretting over making him a shirt? This year, you just zipped right through it.
    Heather

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  19. The fabric is beautiful!

    Sometimes I forget what I should be doing and next thing you know I'm halfway done with a project. Oops!

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  20. Fab project well done. Sometimes I trick myself into doing something, esp those things I don't want to do, like tidying (yick) by setting a timer and *just* doing 40 mins. By the time I've done that I'm all go.
    Love the shirt (might borrow straight talking Mama's pattern).

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  21. Looks great - love the collar detail. I have been avoiding a sewing project, but I am inspired to "put one foot in front of the other" as you say and get started!

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  22. Sweet! It looks great on him!

    That has never ever happened to me. Any time I've sewn when I haven't really felt like it, it's ended with seam ripper in hand and much cursing.

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  23. Does this mean you're gonna get started on his suit now?

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  24. Don't hold your breath, Niki, my friend.

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  25. What a gorgeous shirt!!! Wonderful job!

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  26. Wow, I wish I could say I've done that. Actually, this is perfect. Last night my husband was talking to me and I got distracted by the bottom button of his untucked shirt. And it occurred to me that on a lot of men's shirts the bottom button hole is stitched in a different colored thread from the rest. I wondered why that was the case and thought you'd be the perfect person to ask. Do you know? It certainly can't be because of efficiency.

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  27. Well, obviously neither of you needs reading glasses yet! DH insists on pockets on all his shirts. I make them narrower than standard so his glass don't fall down sideways to the bottom of the pocket.

    And you really must learn welt pockets! They impress the he** out of everyone, and you can make them disappear into printed fabric if you are very very careful cutting the lip(s) out!

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  28. I was wondering what could lift a collared shirt from the mundane__ love that back detail.

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  29. LOVE the back collar detail! And Michael simply glows in that shirt :) (or does he glow like that all of the time?)

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  30. Fantastic shirt, Peter! I LOVE the back button collar! I love to make things in one day - as a matter of fact, I don't like to sew multiple days on one project although many times I have to. Congrats on your finished project. Michael looks smashing in it. (I love the trade - new shirt for dish duty)

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  31. Nice Shirt! You did a great job!

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  32. Nice shirt. Perfect material for it as well.

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  33. Way cool shirt - I love the back of the collar; the fabric is great, too. You rock you know! I totally agree with you about how you feel when your sewing project is successful. Thanks for sharing.

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  34. Very nice work. I'm intrigued by your use of the rotary cutter for cutting the fabric. I suppose you must have a good work surface. Do you have one of those jumbo cutting mats?

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  35. Yes, Russell. It's one of those self-healing mats that lasts and lasts. A very good investment!

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  36. Michael is adorable and that shirt really suits him. He was right about the fabric!

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  37. Very cool shirt. I'd never seen that detailing on the back of the collar and I love it!

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  38. Interesting question about the bottom button on a man's shirt (usually a dress shirt). Found this explanation: The bottom buttonhole, along with the top button at the collar, are usually sewn horizontally to allow the button to take more stress from pulling and movement without stretching out the shirt or the hole itself. It's also why they can often have reinforced stitching with thicker thread. Traditionally, this was done with a thread of a different color. The thread color has stuck around more as a stylistic choice. But the horizontal buttonholes remain imperative to reduce the chance of a popped button.

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  39. Very nice shirt! I think this is the kind of shirt one must make after any sort of disastrous project. No collar stand, no welt pockets, heaven! Just put it together and wear it. Now I must get to work on my wool knit jumper with the charmeuse lining. ARRGGHH!!!

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  40. Lovely! Do you happen to know anything more about the fabric? - made/designed by whom and when?

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  41. Fantastic shirt! I love the fabric and the button detail on the collar. Thinking I might have to go rock out a shirt for my fella now.

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