Friday, January 29, 2016

Less-selfish Sewing

Thanks for sticking with me! I have a completed wearable muslin (read: round 1 finished project -- round 2 is soon to come!) for my Elisalex Dress that I'll be sharing here shortly. In the meantime, I've also started the planning and supplies-gathering stages for another project: something decidedly less selfish than an unnecessary sparkly party dress.

Historically, I've remained squarely on the selfish side of the sewing spectrum, only really devoting my sewing time to making things for myself (except for a brief attempt at men's shirt-making in 2012, that was quickly abandoned amid head-scratching and fitting challenges). However, this Christmas, handmade gifts abounded, and the unselfish less-selfish spirit has spilled over into the new year. You may have caught me on Instagram this week dabbling in some home decor sewing for my sister, using upholstery fabric for the first time! Now we're back to apparel sewing.

My dude's birthday is in early February, so, like you do, I've decided to make him a shirt. Since I already own McCall's 6044, I'm planning to use it, and it's been well documented as a good place to start your unselfish man-sewing. It's done its rounds on the web (like here, here, here, and here, to note a few).

My plan is to sew up a first draft out of some chambray, and use white buttons and thread to get somewhere close to this look, from j.crew.

I like the classic style here with a simple left chest pocket (no cowboy style western detailing or lumberjack-ish pocket flaps). One of the most exciting parts of the sewing-for-someone-else experience is choosing the fabric! I went for this red chambray for this first round, to mimic the inspiration shirt.

Robert Kaufman Interweave Chambray

Hopefully there will be minimal adjustments required before I'm able to move onto the final masterpiece (thinking positively!) in this fun Cotton + Steel print. He picked the fabric out and I think it's going to be great. I really like the subtle flower print (doesn't scream FLORAL) and the color scheme.

Cotton + Steel "Mustang" Collection, Daisy

I happened upon the kit pictured below (on for a shirt dress pattern that was done in the same fabric. I grabbed this image because, inspiration-wise, I think it gives a good idea of the feel of a button-down shirt sewn with this stuff -- and also has me starting to consider thread and button colors. I'm actually thinking all Navy to match the background, so the print can do the talking. Is that boring?

Craftsy Kit

What about you guys? Have you sewn much for your friends and family?

Do you have any men's button-down shirt recommendations?


  1. I still have Christmas present to sew! AIE! I have two more Portsides to make, then I have one to make for the hubs (not a Christmas gift, just for funsies), plus some Jutland Pants/Shorts for him that I promised him this time last year (not to mention all the other stuff in my queue because my clothes are getting holes in them).

    I've only ever made the Negroni, which worked out great, although I made the size too small.

    I cannot wait to see your finished dress! The muslin screams of summer, it is too lovely!

  2. Good luck with the shirt, I really like both fabrics the two of you chose. What a nice that might keep you sewing less-selfishly a lot! ummm - matching shirts? LOL

    1. Haha, Coco! Matching shirts would be too adorable.

  3. Negroni was my first and only men's shirt pattern, with the adaptations from Male Pattern Boldness! I've been side-eyeing Thread Theory's Fairfield, though. I love them.


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