On waving this wonderful Serpentine fabric in front of Mr O, and declaring that I wasn’t sure what I should make with it, my foot suffered an instant shot. “A shirt for me” he said, with no hesitation. Doh! I had no quick comeback! It was a perfect suggestion, of course.
Fabric Godmother were so kind in forwarding on my goody bag, when I was unable to attend one of their events last year and this fabric was one of the treats inside. I thought on first feel that it was a cotton lawn but it turns out it’s a viscose sateen – a new one on me – and it is gorgeous to the touch and super to sew with. Presses beautifully too.
I reused vintage Butterick 5007, (western shirt pattern) for the 4th time – definitely less daunting this time round. The only things I still fear about it are the buttonholes because I know for a fact that at least one will mess up and I’ll have to deal with the nasty task of unpicking it. And that is exactly what happened. Is there actually anything more annoying?
It takes time to put this shirt together, mostly due to all the neat details: curved yokes, rounded hemline; pleats and darts on the cuffs; diamond darts for slim fitting and every single piece has 2 parallel rows of topstitching. But weirdly, I really like the process. The main section comes together pretty quickly and its a great one for sewing in stages if time is short. Which it is the story of my actual life!
It also has some serious statement collar action going on which Mr O loves. I personally couldn’t carry them off but I think he rocks these aeroplane wings, styled up with his 70s jacket and hat.
I didn’t make any attempt to pattern match as you can see. I only had 2m to work with – the exact amount required – and there would have been so much waste if I had even tried. That is my excuse and one I am firmly sticking to!
Even though I enjoyed the process, I properly ran out of steam when it came to sewing on the buttons. So I successfully managed to delegate the sourcing and sewing of, to Dan. And he did a fabulous job – giving way more attention to detail than I’d have given – he sewed with alternate orange and yellow threads throughout to complement the colours in the design and it looks simply awesome.
This is definitely not the last time I will use this pattern. I just noticed that Fabric Godmother has a Navy version of the same fabric on sale on their site, and made the mistake of showing Dan!
But he’s going to have to wait a wee while – I’ve got a lovely little commission I need to crack on with and also I want a new coat!
Photos are by me this time. But I think you probably guessed that already, haha! I think I’ll stick to my day job!
3 Replies to “The making of a Serpentine shirt for Mr O”
What a wonderful shirt! And he looks so handsome in it!! I agree about the allure of shirt making. I sort of love it too. For me it’s the lovely details in well behaved fabric.
Lovely shirt! So fabulous 🙂
Great shirt and I love how visibly happy he is in it.