This is a men’s sewing blog – even the tagline claims “by men, for men”, but I have to stop and tell you all about the first dress I made in my Fashion Draping course!
Doesn’t my dress form look sensational in her cotton broadcloth dress? She’s ready to wheel down the runway.
When I made the Blue Gingham Shirt, I intended mainly to test the fit of my pattern draft in a real garment. So I wasn’t worrying so much about the collar. I just used the collar I had traced off the original shirt, and didn’t think much of it.
Now that the shirt is done, I’m not happy with the collar. It doesn’t roll properly, not like the shirt it was copied from. Perhaps I got something wrong when I traced the pattern, perhaps I used too much interfacing and the collar blades are too stiff. I tried to tame this by making it a button-down, but so far, that hasn’t been successful.
But the main issue with the collar is that I don’t like the style; it’s too large and draws attention away from my face. So I wanted to find a collar I would be happy with for the Pink Shirt. Continue reading
Many, many years ago I had a pink shirt in my wardrobe. It was a little too pink, the fabric was a little too heavy, and the shirt was a little too loose fitting. And somehow it ended up with ballpoint pen marks on one of the sleeves. So out it went.
I’ve been thinking again about making dress shirts in pastel colors – light green, yellow, blue, and pink. And then I started seeing these little ads in my Facebook feed.
My “Make it Work” moment worked!
On a sunny Saturday afternoon, in a cozy Northern California country club with idyllic views everywhere you looked, my client Kevin beamed with pleasure as he married his beautiful bride. Also not coincidentally, he was the best-dressed man at the event.
A gorgeous pair of golden cufflinks handed down to him from his grandfather, together with a black satin bowtie and suspenders, finished the look of his bespoke, one-of-a-kind tuxedo shirt. Both bride and groom were thrilled with the way our project turned out – the shirt added a personal touch to a formal outfit. And I was thrilled too.
I won’t include wedding photos here, out of respect for the bride and groom, but I’ll illustrate how the project turned out. I’m planning four installments to this series:
- reflections on the experience,
- and finally some shirt-making tips.
I’ve been very delinquent in contributing to the blog lately, because I’ve been pouring my attention into sewing!
Part of the reason I have been so busy was Paul Gallo’s course in patternmaking and draping I took in January, plus time I spent outside the class absorbing the material. But another reason why I’ve been so busy is that I’ve been engaged in another project, with a deadline: I’m sewing for a client.
Sewing For Others
So, first a confession of sorts. As I’ve been developing as a sewist, I have been toying with the idea of sewing for others.
It’s part of the reason I’ve taken the long, difficult road of learning fitting and pattern alteration, rather than just tracing off a garment that already fits, or making minor alterations to a commercial pattern and hoping for the best. I’ve wanted to develop a skill set that I could apply to others as well as myself – but to what end, I’ve never been sure.
I also knew I would have to approach sewing for others as a business, and not as a “for free” or “doing a favor” type thing. I’ve read too many horror stories from other sewing bloggers. People think it’s easy for you to give up your time to “whip up” a quick something that they know you’ve been sitting around, just waiting to create for them. Generally, most people are completely unaware of the amount of work that goes into creating a well-made garment, and are unappreciative of the effort. I know a lot of other bloggers have an unstated rule that they will not sew for people who ask.
And that has also been my stance on the matter. Until now. Continue reading