It’s a shirt and I made it!

I would not call myself an advanced sewer (sewist? what’s the right word?), but I think I have just climbed up a few rungs on the sewing ladder. I made this shirt for Tony. That’s where the scraps from last week came from. It is the first garment I have ever made all by myself. I have made a blouse for myself, but my mum basically did all the ‘difficult’ bits, I just did the sewing together!

But this shirt; 100% solo project. I started by taking apart one of his old shirts, making notes on it as I went along, like what is the sleeve doing and where. How wide is the seam, is it double-folded etc etc. Then I made a paper copy of each shirt part, transferring all those notes to the paper. And then I cut fabric to make a muslin version.

Sewing the muslin taught me so much about what order to sew things together: I did some of it in the wrong order – but that just meant I knew how to do it for the Real Thing.

The original shirt was a long sleeve shirt, but because Tony wanted a short sleeve shirt I had to figure out how to alter that. Luckily, he had a short sleeve one that he wanted to get rid of, so I used the sleeve from that to make a template. I didn’t try it out on the muslin version first. I just measured the sleeve and the armscye, extending the latter to fit. Luckily, it did! That was a bit nerve-wrecking!

Oh the things I have learnt! And most of it without swearing too much! I had never done a single buttonhole, so there was another thing to learn. I am glad to say that that was really easy – the machine basically does it for you!

By golly, I am so proud of myself. I got my sewing machine about 4 years ago. Before then I couldn’t even thread a sewing machine. Seriously, I am not kidding (When I do kid, you’ll know it by my use of the word “bazinga.”) My mum tried showing me So Many Times and it never stuck!

If I can get to this point in four years, basically winging it all the way, you really, really can too! You just need patience, perserverance and determination. And maybe an assortment of swear words!

So. Can I get a Hell Yeah?! And maybe a Woop-Woop?! ;-)

♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ • ♥ 


  1. June 7, 2010 / 1:33 pm

    *giggle* Hell Yeah!! How Awesome are You!! SOOOO awesome. that looks fab. You should be very proud of yourself, that's a huge project.

  2. June 7, 2010 / 2:08 pm

    It looks great!! That's what I want to learn and start doing more often – sewing clothes.

  3. June 7, 2010 / 2:40 pm

    That's AWESOME! You ROCK!

  4. June 7, 2010 / 2:56 pm

    well done! buttonholes are not so scary:
    it's getting them to the right length before cutting the hole part:
    you should be proud of yourself as shirts are not easy:
    especially with that beautiful top stitching around the collar and button front:

  5. June 7, 2010 / 3:10 pm

    That is really impressive! Well done you! Always going a step further….hip-hip-hooray!!

  6. June 7, 2010 / 3:45 pm

    Looks great and Tony looks proud of it too. If you already have a pattern for a long sleeve you just shorten it by cutting straight across at the level (plus hem) you want it to be. Just like shortening trousers really. Cherrie

  7. June 8, 2010 / 8:06 am

    Wow! I'm so impressed and envious of your skills!

  8. June 9, 2010 / 12:22 am

    Well done! And quite dashing!

  9. June 11, 2010 / 12:23 am

    You are looking for the word 'seamstress' or tailor! Congrats! Great looking shirt!

    I also wanted to add that your granny square join tutorial on your old blog is marvelous! Exactly what I was looking for!

  10. June 13, 2010 / 10:35 pm

    Thank you all so much! It was quite the steep learning curve and it times I thought I'd Never-Never-Ever finish this thing. But I did. Yay!

  11. July 20, 2010 / 11:11 am

    Its perfect as far as i can see.:-)
    I have been making my hubby's shirts since we got married..and boy was it frustrating the first one!
    but once you get through your first one,it becomes a lot easier.
    well done honey!i marked it as a milestone on my way to becoming a great seamstress!:-)!

    PS/not sure if I've commented on your blog before,but i do visit you often and i think your work is unique and ispiring.thank you for sharing with the world..

    keep it up!!

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