Remember the two long fish-eye darts I added to my tan shirt when I first made it?
Well they'd always made the shirt fit too snugly in the hips, so today I removed them -- the darts, I mean, not my hips.
I wasn't sure I could and I wasn't sure I should; I was afraid they'd leave an indelible mark. But upon close inspection, I noticed that my stitch length had been relatively long (except at the ends of course), and the stitches came out of the darts easily. Fortunately, too, I hadn't laundered or ironed the shirt much. I dampened the back of the shirt and pressed it flat -- twice. Any remaining lines should decrease with time and, frankly, with the normal wrinkling of the shirt that comes with wearing it, you won't notice.
That said, I wouldn't recommend making a habit of removing darts. It can permanently damage your fabric and ruin your project. I was fortunate.
I like the fuller fit in back much more. If I were to make a dart -- which I'm not -- it would be half as long, ending just below my waist (which is 31"), after which my body begins expanding again (which at its widest is nearly 36"). The long darts on the pattern would work for someone very slender-hipped (or maybe very tall).
One more thing: I took 1" off the front and back length and redid the hem, so the shirt isn't quite as long.
As you can see, even without the darts, the fit is still slim and now I don't have to worry about buttoning that last button.
Meanwhile, I'm just about finished with my black and white gingham shirt, which I'll be modeling next week. I made my buttonholes this morning with my fully-adjustable vintage Singer buttonholer (the one that doesn't use templates).
I used smaller shirt buttons than I usually do. I think they look more elegant and professional.
I sewed on my buttons with my Bernina 930. It does a very neat job.
Rather than folding the hem up twice and stitching, which almost always results in a hem that doesn't lie flat even after pressing, I serged the bottom so that there was just the slightest curve inward (this can be produced by adjusting the differential feed). I then pressed the edge up barely 1/4" and topstitched from the right side. The hem lies completely flat. (I've tried using a rolled hem foot in the past, but there's so much stopping and starting over the thicknesses of seams that it never looks good, nor does the edge lie completely flat)
And that's it! Tomorrow I start my mustard pants (probably) then the gray ribbed knit sweater vest after that. We're very busy here at MPB Industries!
Oh, before I forget: I cut one of the flowers out of a scrap of the vintage gray fabric I used to make a shirt for Michael earlier this summer. Doesn't it look cute on the black gingham? I don't think I have the nerve to applique it on however: it's a strong statement.
I'm a native New Yorker and sewing fanatic! I started sewing in 2009 and today make all my own clothes using vintage sewing machines and vintage patterns, in addition to sewing for private clients. Welcome to the warm and whimsical world of Male Pattern Boldness, where the conversation is sewing, style, fashion, fabric, and more!