Christmas Gifts

While browsing the Italian cotton shirting section on The Remnant Warehouse website, I had the bright idea to make shirts for the males of the household for Christmas.  I have seen the quality of the shirts my 15 year old buys, and although the patterns are eye catching, that is about the only redeeming feature about most of them.  

On a recent visit to Fabric Vision, I picked up Burda 7045.  I don't sew Burda usually, except from the magazine and even then not as frequently as I should, but they do seem to have the best variety of menswear patterns and certainly the largest size range in each pattern.

I ordered 3 different pieces of shirting from The Remnant Warehouse and upon their arrival, Courteney liked them all and Callum liked none of them.  I am not sure whether that is because he lacks vision or because they were perhaps not flamboyant enough.  One of my purchases had been inspired by one of his mates shirts so I thought I had it sorted!  Oh well, you can't win them all.  

I proceeded to trace off the smallest size in the pattern undeterred, knowing that there is another young man who has become like part of our family who wears the same sized shirt.  Sorry "M" if you are reading this, you were my guinea pig!  Callum also wasn't off the hook.  He became my model!  Both boys as I said, wear the same sized shirt but there is about 10cm difference in height.  For "M's" shirt I needed to add length to both the sleeves and body.  Because the pattern lists the height it is drafted to, I simply picked a size with the corresponding height and made both the sleeves and body to this length.  Just to be on the safe side I covertly measured a shirt sleeve in said shop in a corresponding size just to be on the safe side.  I did find the hem a little square cut for my liking so I altered the hem to mimic that of the Grainline Archer.

When sewing menswear, I feel that with the simplicity of design it is even more important not to have imperfections and this was my biggest fear.  This gorgeous stretch cotton shirting deserved the best finish I was capable of.  I trimmed the shirt with more Italian cotton shirting.  This time in stark white.  I used this on the collar as well as the cuffs.  Instead of flat felled seams on the shirt I did cheat a little and just stitched and overlocked my seams before double top stitching them flat.  I now have the look of rtw without the frustration.

I managed to cobble together enough buttons to complete the project from my rescued buttons collection.

To say I am pleased with the resulting shirt is very much an understatement.  I just hope "M" is too!


  1. Your son is lucky to have an unselfish seamstress for a mother. Great shirt and much better quality than RTW.

    1. My son is a little young yet to appreciate handmade gifts but I am sure in time it will come.

  2. Great shirt. I like the contrast collar and cuffs too . It's hard to find quality men's shirting but I really hope your son loves this as well ! ( not too much though otherwise you might end up just sewing for him and not you ! )

    1. I am pretty sure there is no danger of my current obsession with men's shirts taking over my sewing. I always seem to have a queue of things to make for myself.


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