I hadn't mentioned it yet because I had a romantic notion of making these things on the sly and then presenting them to my boy with a flourish. He does read my blog (awww! kisses, Honey!) so I decided I just wouldn't write about it until after the fact. But last week I realized that if I want to get a really good fit, I'm going to have to take a bunch of measurements, which would pretty much let the cat out of the bag.
And getting a good fit is the whole reason for wanting to make the shirts. (I want to make the pants just because my local fabric shop has some really lovely suiting wools, and I want to work with them!) We ladies often bemoan the fitting struggles we have with sewing, and say, "Those boys have it so easy!" Well, my poor boy has never had a shirt that fits him well. He has a thick neck and broad shoulders compared to his chest and waist, and short arms - even the shortest arm lengths in RTW shirts are about an inch too long. I swear if you met him on the street, he'd look like a normal guy ;-)
I've made him several casual shirts over the years, but have never altered the patterns for his requirements, as they were meant to be worn without a tie and with a loose fit. I enjoy making shirts and don't find things like collars and cuffs to be especially difficult. So my challenge here will be getting a great custom fit for him, along with adding in more details like sleeve plackets and collar stay channels. To that end, I've ordered a book recommended by Lisa: Shirtmaking by David Page Coffin. I got the book on Saturday and have already read a lot of it - like Lisa, I highly recommend it if you want to make men's shirts with all the bells and whistles.
|This pink fabric is the lining for my coat, which I've started on!|
I've acquired a lot of sewing books over the last several months, and this is one of the best I have. Very readable. I'll be honest: a lot of sewing books, while containing great information, are a little on the dry side and often put me to sleep, which is why it takes me so long to get through them! But this one is positively riveting! Mr. Coffin has some very definite ideas about what a men's shirt should be, but the technical information is presented in an engaging way, almost as if you're sitting down with a friend and having a discussion on the topic. I really appreciate that he explains the reasons for why things are done the way they are.
So there you have it. My plan is to read the entire book before getting started. There's no rush on this project, but I am really, really looking forward to making some custom shirts for my honey, so I'm hoping to get started sooner rather than later.
Oh yeah - and I ordered a felling foot too :-)