Second on my list of Christmas presents I’ve made for my nearest and dearest this year is the Fairfiled Button-up shirt from Thread Theory. I’m a little behind in getting these finished I must admit! One is for my father-in-law and the other is for my BFF’s boyfriend. It’s the first time I’ve used a Thread Theory pattern but I really liked the look of the design and the end results I’ve seen floating round the blogosphere. I decided to make version both versions: one with the back darts and one with the gathers.
Both men ended up choosing a interweave cotton chambray fabric from Dragonfly Fabrics. Plus BFF’s boy asked if there could be a splash of red on the inside, so I chose a cherry crimson chambray (from Minerva crafts) for the lining of the collar band and cuffs. The interweave is a little bit heavier than other chambray but I hope it will soften with wear and be quite nice.
In terms of the pattern: I love it. It has both a regular and a large fit, ie good for those supper skinny bean poles and for the more well endowed men. And it really is such a great design.The instructions were super clear and really well laid out. I loved the ‘burrito’ technique for the shoulder seams which leaves no raw edges or stitching visible! It was the first time I’d ever come across this technique and by carefully following the instructions it came out excellently. I also really appreciated the clarity on how to do the sleeve placket. I’ve only tried this once before and really struggled but this time my results are pretty smooth.
On my first version however (the one with the red facing) I slightly f*cked up on the sleeve and side seams. Because I was running low on my matching thread I decided to just use French seams instead of flat fell seams. So without reading the instructions I jumped straight in and did them on a 5/8″ seam allowance. But when it came round for the second shirt I realized that oh no the seam allowance on the shirt back and sleeve back was just 1/4″ while on the front it was 5/8″ and that the seam allowance had already been offset. Which i think means that on the first version i did the back of the shirt and sleeves will be pulling tight. I hummed and hawed for a while on this and decided that as it was all finished and ready to be posted, I’d let him try it on first before unpicking the lot. I did however get it right on the second version. And the detail of the stitching I am quite pleased with.
In summary: I love this pattern, the instructions are great and the design is lovely. It takes a while to cut out but it is definitely worth it!
Version 1 with back pleat:
Version 2 with back darts: