Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Made by a Fabricista: 25th Anniversary Shirt


It was my 25th anniversary last week and every year I buy my husband at least one card for our anniversary and this year was no different. I looked at typical anniversary cards, "I'm Sorry" cards (for all of those times I said something I shouldn't have, uh-hem), "I Love You" cards and "You're My Best Friend" cards. I settled on an "I Love You" anniversary card but I knew I wanted to give him something more....it is our silver anniversary after all.


I decided to make him a shirt. I realize it's a bit "Little House on the Prairie" for Ma to make Pa a shirt but he loved the last shirt I made him so much I knew it was the perfect gift.


I found a beautiful quality Japanese shirting from Fabric Mart that he would like. It's a 100% cotton blue/gray fabric with tiny red & cream colored stripes and a really soft face. He's an artist so he's usually in a crew neck t-shirt and Levi's (with a little bit of paint on them somewhere) so this crisp but not too crisp fabric is great for my casual dressing guy.


Already in my stash was the Negroni pattern from Colette but I had yet to make it. My husband has these particular two shirts he likes from Patagonia, so I decided to steal one from the closet and use it for the basic fitting specs. I measured it against Negroni and found the large was only a 1/2" different around the body so I went with it.


I made a few fit and design changes starting with shortening the sleeve. I measured the shirt from the neck, across the shoulder seam and down the sleeve to get the length I wanted.


I then measured the yoke and sleeve pattern pieces, deducted the seam allowances and found my sleeve needed to be shortened a little more than an inch.


I copied the Patagonia shirt pocket because it had a lot more interest and used my 1/4" foot for the inner stitch and my ditch foot for the edge stitch when topstitching on the pocket, collar, yoke and sleeve. Negroni calls for a shirttail hem but I changed it to a straight hem with a side vent.


The instructions were well written, the finish on the inner yoke and collar was really clean (take a look at the inside in the photo below) and overall it looked more like a ready to wear shirt than any other men's pattern I've used.


Since I gave it to him as a surprise I wasn't able to do fittings while making the shirt so I will make a couple of changes next time I make it. I'll shorten the sleeve and shirt length by an inch each and make a sloping shoulder adjustment to eliminate the wrinkles at the back armhole.


My husband loved the shirt (and wants another one...I'm so happy!) and after some coaxing agreed to be photographed but insisted I leave his face out of it. I obliged because if I didn't I'd have to buy an "I'm Sorry" card at our next anniversary.


While making this shirt I was reminded of something. When a new niece or nephew is born in the family, my husband gets freshly showered and puts on a collared shirt before we first go meet the baby. I've never asked him to do this and of course the baby doesn't know he's in his "Sunday Best" but I find it so endearing. Maybe we need a new niece or nephew in the family.

Thank you for sharing in my sewing adventures,
Diane at Gatorbunnysews

2 comments:

  1. That is a lovely shirt. I've made three Negroni's for three different men in my life (one my husband) and they've been hugely successful.

    I love that story about him putting on his Sunday best. That is really sweet.

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  2. Great Work!! You really need to keep those skill up between your annual shirt for your precious hubby. It just so happens my hubs wears the button up shirts always. I'd be willing to offer him up for your practice. :) (just sayin) I hope your hubby gives you a "You're the Best" card. You deserve it.

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