Hello hello from a very wintery Asheville!
We had our first snow of the weekend and sure made our little house look magical – now we just need to get some lights up so it can look magical AND festive!
Back to sewing – I knew the winter was coming fast and decided I wanted to make a winter shirt. This was reinforced when I found the most amazing Dear Stella Astronaut flannel from Stonemountain Fabrics. It is soooo soft and I’m a sucker small prints.
Although I have, and love, the Tilly and the Buttons Rosa shirt pattern it is quite fitted and I wanted something a little more relaxed so I could layer it for the cold. I liked the idea of the Archer Button-up by Grainline but I’ve been on a bit of a pattern buying ban lately as I’ve got way too many that are yet to have been made., so I put the feelers out and the lovely Jenn of Msjennmakes told me about a free PDF called the Zina Shirt Dress from Fabric-store.com. I looked at the technical drawing (very similar to the Archer) and Jenn sent me a pic of her version and it seemed perfect – I mean, free, what more could you want?!
This was to be the first button up I’d made since getting into my fit issues so, like a good sewist, I made a muslin.
I originally cut the 4/6 and it was too big so I took it down to the 0/2.
I narrowed the shoulders by 1.5 cm, shortened between the chest and shoulder by an inch, perhaps even 1.5″ (sorry about the mixing of systems – its what happens when a European lives in the USA!), not forgetting the sleeve cap! I then added a little length in at the waist to counter balance what I’d taken out above the chest (I’m short there, not in the waist). I also shortened my sleeves. The second muslin was much better so I decided to go for it. Unfortunately I don’t seem to have taken any pics of the muslin but I can happily take some of the adjusted pattern if any short sewists out there are interested.
The pattern was pretty easy to follow. It basically has you create all the ‘parts’ first, i.e the collar, cuffs, sleeve placates and then you put it all together. I tried to really take my time with this project, enjoy the process. Even when I had to sew my cuffs 3 times (sewed them, thought I’d done it wrong, sewed them again, realised I was right the first time, sewed them again – oops!) I really did enjoy making this shirt.
It came together pretty quickly but then came the big choice – what buttons to use?!
I’ve been wanting to buy from the talented Arrow Mountain for the longest time – if you don’t know her please visit her shop, she makes the most amazing wood and acrylic buttons, she also has badges and a fantastic wooden sewing gauge (not an advert, I just really like her stuff!). In my head my initial thought was wooden buttons as the shirt is this blue, grey kind of colour. There were plenty of beautiful wooden buttons in her shop but then…then I stumbled across her Phases of the Moon shirt buttons and HAD TO HAVE THEM. I mean, come on, its a shirt with space people on! MOON BUTTONS ON A SPACE SHIRT! As you can tell, I’m still a little overexcited about this discovery. Of course I ordered them right away, unfortunately they had to come alllll the way from Australia so my finished shirt was hanging lonely and button-less in the living room (so I could admire it) for a week.
As soon as they arrived I sewed them on and truly couldn’t be happier…as you can tell 😉
I always know when I really like something I’ve made and that is it something genuinely useful to my wardrobe if I wear it right after I’ve made it. Well, I finished this shirt about 10 days ago and I’ll be honest, I’ve put it on at least once a day since!
Joe loves this one too, especially as he noticed something I didn’t which he thinks is brilliant – on the point of the collar there’s a perfectly placed little spaceman:
I think for the next one I’ll narrow the shoulders even more as there is still a little too much fabric there, plus shorten the sleeves a little less – they’re totally fine on this one, I just think I’ve worn too long sleeves on RTW clothes for so long now my brain thinks sleeves are supposed to cover your hands – ha! These changes for future shirts don’t make me love this one any less though.
The shirt is s comfy, the fabric so soft and the buttons make me so happy – hooray for a super successful make!
Well, enough for now – I’m actually in the middle of finishing up my first ever pair of jeans – yay! – and I’m super excited to get back to them.
Enjoy this lovely festive month whatever you celebrate!