Sunday, March 25, 2012

Easy Linen Shirt for Will

I bought the Sewing For Boys book just before Soren was born in preparation for having TWO boys. I made the raglan tee for Will at Christmas when I made the boys their snowmen shirts (I used an altered version of the romper pattern for Soren), but that was all that I had gotten around to trying out.

The sewalong at Boy, Oh, Boy, Oh Boy! was just what I needed to get me going through the rest of the book. March's pattern was the Easy Linen Shirt.

First, I stressed about what fabric I'd use--this one calls for linen, so I felt I should use some kind of woven at least, but I didn't know what I had in my gigantic quilting cotton stash that would look good. Then I had an epiphany--the thrift store! I found a nice Abercrombie long-sleeved men's button-down in a very soft brushed cotton. It was perfect. Of course, I had to get several other nice button-downs that would be suitable for upcycling (Will's going to need some new shorts very soon), and one of them provided the contrast collar.

One of the rules of the sewalong is that you have to add your own alteration or embellishment to the garment, so at first I was thinking of adding a big pocket since Will loves pockets. I was going to do a big hoodie-style one and traced out the pattern peice from the Luka Hoodie in SFB, but after I got it all cut out and sewed together, it was huge. I was not envisioning one that extended that far over, so I scrapped the pocket and decided to do a dinosaur applique instead. I heat-n-bonded it to the shirt and then went around the edges with a straight stitch. I didn't take my HnB to the edges or use a zig-zag stitch because I wanted to get the frayed look on the dino.

Aside from my tinkering with pocket, this pattern went together pretty easily. I had a bit of trouble understanding the directions for the collar (I should have looked up what "edge-stitching" meant--there's a handy glossary in the book--but I just guessed, incorrectly), but that was probably my fault. It fits Will just fine, though if he were a normal-sized almost-3-year old, it would be too short. He seems to like it OK and let me try it on him and snap a couple of pics, though he wouldn't stay still enough to get any good ones. This is the best I could do.

Easy Linen Shirt from *Sewing for Boys*

After watching him wear it for a day, I wasn't thrilled with the way the top gaps open, so I decided to add a closure. I found a packet of dinosaur buttons at JoAnns and let Will pick one out. I put a little elastic loop on the other side to go around it. Hopefully the Tyrannosaurus Rex button he picked out doesn't stab him and make it uncomfortable. All in all, this is probably not a shirt I will make again, mostly just because a drafty, but long-sleeved shirt isn't the most practical for our weather.

Easy Linen Shirt from *Sewing for Boys*
This pic includes the button/tog closure.

Easy Linen Shirt--Dino Applique
Dinosaur applique detail.


  1. I think the thrifted fabric looks fabulous and the frayed edges on the dino fit perfectly!

  2. Nice look,I was very pleased to find on Linen shirts. I definitely enjoyed reading every little bit of it and I have it bookmarked to check out new stuff posted regularly.