Playing with shirt sleeves

I just had to scratch an itch… A recent post by Girls in the Garden showcased the 52-1 Box-cut blouse by SisterMag – what a cute sleeve treatment! I love the button placket on the back of the sleeve, so clever.

Having an inexpensive fabric available (cotton sateen intended for pillowslips), I took the fun route and drafted a similar sleeve for my Noa shirt pattern.

The construction plan was really simple – cut an elbow length sleeve and add a placket and cuff:

The design uses a 2-piece ‘gauntlet’ placket rather than the bound placket of the Noa. Fashioning one from scratch is not hard, but is made much easier by Emy’s tutorial at Off the Cuff . BTW, this is Emy, owner of the ‘Fashion Sewing Supply‘, an interfacing destination for many sewists.

If I had not sewn a buttonhole through 3 layers of the front bodice, this would have been a wearable muslin. Sigh.

Great sleeve for pj’s, camp shirts, blouses and shirt dresses! Idea, gather or pleat the sleeve into a shorter cuff for the romantic puffed sleeve that’s been popular all year. Credits: check out Lori’s post here, and the original 52-1 Box-cut Linen Blouse pattern, available here.

I did patch the holes, but, no, I’ll not be keeping this shirt! Bye for now – Coco

Fabrics-Store Noa ‘big’ shirt

Oh, the pleasure of the classic big shirt!

Finding this beautiful pattern was not easy, even with all the search options we have online. I happened on it one day while exploring ‘indie women’s blouse sewing pattern’ on Pinterest. Following the link, I was on the Fabrics-Store site! I’ve often looked at their linens, but didn’t realize they offer an incredible array of patterns. The real stunner: this pattern is free.

The pattern description doesn’t include line art or measurements, but the fabric/measurements/sizes table is available in the download file. Sizes XS – 4X!

Things I love:

  • The bust, waist, and hips are all the same measurement. This shirt is not curvy – if I wanted curvy, I wouldn’t be looking at big shirts.
  • The hemline is deeply curved and gorgeous.
  • The yoke and collar are proportionate to a woman’s frame.
  • It has a one-piece sleeve with a continuous-bound placket and one-button cuff. I think it’s elegant.
  • Well, I love the whole thing.

Sewing notes:

  • I sewed the Medium (8/10), which has bust/waist/hips of 46.5″, and is 28″ long at the center back. (for reference, I’m 5/8″, 34/30/39).
  • I used Kaufman Brussels washer linen, 2.5 yards @ 52″ wide. The fabric requirements for my size suggest 2 yards, but, in the small print there’s a caution against shrinkage. Linens and linen blends shrink as much as 10%, hence the extra .5 yard. And I didn’t end up with much in the way of scraps!
  • For interfacing, I used Pellon 950F shirtailor (collar, stand, cuffs) and 911FF lightweight fusible (button bands).
  • The pattern includes 3/8″ seam allowances, but I drafted my tissue at 1/2″ SA. IMHO, 3/8″ is suitable only for knits.
  • I used the left bodice pattern, with its cut-on button band, for both sides.
  • Little tip: as preparation, I serged the edges of my cut-out pieces with a long 1-needle stitch to prevent losing seam allowances to the ravels. It’s super easy to remove the serging as needed – just locate the needle thread and pull 🙂
  • Buttonholes: I never use a button in the collar stand. It’s all vanity – I have a big head and skinny neck, and a button under my chin does me in mentally. Instead I place my first buttonhole 1 1/2″ below the collar stand. Oh, another tip – you can do those buttonholes before you do anything else, instead of waiting to the end.
  • The tutorial has great instructions for that pretty hem:
  • But their suggestions for attaching the yoke are kind of silly. Give me a burrito any day:

I want more!! Just the best big shirt ever 🙂

Ciao! Coco