This past week I attacked my second project from the book Sewing for Boys, the Easy Linen Shirt. I would have had to agree with the name of the shirt and the many other bloggers who rave about how simple this shirt really is to construct, until I got to the collar. Maybe it’s my beginner status, or the fact I seem to have trouble following directions (and therefor using other people’s patterns) but it took me a long time, a lot of fiddling, a bit of swallowing back the curse words I was so sorely tempted to emit, and in the end it was a less than perfect execution. Still, I’m happy with the shirt, feel I learned and grew from the experience. And Eli is thrilled with his new threads, so all in all, definitely a worthwhile experience.
This shirt contains parts of an old linen shirt and skirt of mine, a men’s cotton shirt and the elephants are courtesy of a Banana Republic canvas shopping bag. I made the 4/5 size so the arms are a bit too long for Eli still.
Because I did some of the sewing while he played nearby in the living room, I sang to him a little ditty I made up so as to buy myself a little time before he was too impatient to have me playing with him again. It went, “Mama’s making Eli and elephant shirt, elephant shirt, an elephant shirt. Mama’s making Eli an elephant shirt, that he can wear to __(insert a place he likes to go to)__.” It worked. He’d say “Again, again, again!” after each verse. After we’d run through it a few times, I began to leave the last word out for him to fill in himself. EVERY TIME he’d exclaim “Ikea!” Usually followed by “Eli go to Ikea?! Eli go now! Go in the silver car!!” Yeah, Eli, Mama likes Ikea too. But we can’t go every day.
I used french seams on the arms and side seams. It was only my second time doing so… the first time being over two years ago. I’m loving how finished it looks! If the seam looks wide to you it’s because it is. I misread 3/8″ seams throughout as 5/8″ (I kept hearing the refrain printed in the comment section of just about every elementary report card I ever had (“doesn’t listen and follow instructions”) as I dealt with the consequences of this. Luckily the shirt is a size bigger than Eli currently wears for things made from this book so it will still fit for a while. It may be a bit tight by the time his arms grow into the sleeves though.
Thanks for reading!
Here’s where I’m linking up: