Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

preppy like that!

As mentioned last post, across the internetz many (mostly)lady-bloggers are sewing up a batch of boy patterns for a blog tour of the designs. The patterns are all PDF indie designs, have a wonderful size range of 3 months to size 16, and they are all featured on an extended sale until the first. I was honored to be asked to participate. The 25th I submitted my first entry. Today, I bring you: 

The Letterman Jacket!

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

So for today: I am The Letterman Jacket by Fairytale Pattern Design. I’ll be discussing them here and in my Flickr tagset.

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

The pattern: if you think about it, a Letterman jacket is a simple garment (certainly simpler than the last jacket I made). What makes it iconic and beautiful are the fabrics used, the details (the distinctive ribbing and collar or center back zip hood), and the patches. Almost any raglan jacket could be easily changed to a letterman jacket. That said, it is wonderful to have a simply-drafted pattern and it was easy for me to modify it for a facing and lining. This particular pattern comes in size 4T to size 16 (please please please let a client request a wee 4T) – a generous size range.

 I made a size 8 in girth and a size 12 in length for my lean green bean boy! I also hand-knit cuffs, hem band, and neckband:

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

 

My welt pockets are perfect! Exactly no one is surprised. That said, some fabrics are far more lovely to work welt pockets in – and melton wool is definitely in that category:

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

 

Finished with a wonderful gold slipper satin and antique brass snaps:

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

And one of my favorite bits: a custom chenille patch:
Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

All in all, a successful venture with a very simple, trusty pattern.

Letterman Jacket (Bundle Up Boy Blog Tour)

You can learn more about the Bundle Up pattern package below – or visit all the blogs that are showcasing the different patterns. Y’all know I tend to draft my own stuff, but these patterns are pretty fabulous and most of them have a great size range. Enjoy!

 
R. Gray, 2 Shirts

2 shirts, 1 client

So what’s up? Me? Nothing. Just hanging out with this super-handsome dude.

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

R. Gray, 2 ShirtsThe shirts aren’t his; he’s just the model here, being professionally good-looking.

Back views:

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

Both these shirts were conceptualized by a client, and ordered and paid for about three weeks ago. The client was very specific about what he wanted: sleeveless with pseudo-distressed detail at hem, sleeve, and pocket, a contrasting inner yoke, and one shirt with traditional placket (the blue) – the other with a polo-style placket (the red). 

I selected the fabrics – a Kaufman double-cloth for the blue, and a mid-to-heavy flannel for the red – and sent them for approval before ordering. For the inner yoke I selected very fine pima shirtings – they feel fabulous and I can’t wait to use them for my own children’s shirts. Below: the inner yoke (cut on bias) against the twill side of the double-cloth:
R. Gray, 2 Shirts

 

 

Some of the pseudo-distressed detail on the pocket front.

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

The inner workings of the blue shirt. I love the elements of color and the sturdiness of the garment. It will wear well, and long. At far right you see the bias-bound armscye edges. A technique I’m planning on using again:

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

 

 

 

At the top of the placket: a hidden 3/16″ snap for a formal-look when employed:

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

 

And now, the red flannel. My first-ever polo placket and it went very well (I used the Timmel “rugby neckline” article, which I’ve preserved with permission of the original author). Notice the plaid matching – the collar is symmetrical, and the placket is placed on a perfectly-centered front piece. Actually plaid matching is so very interesting to me because* there are many ways to match plaids and often some plaid-matching involves sacrificing other plaid-matching!

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

Inner yoke on the red shirt:

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

Some fray-detail on the front pockets. This detail will fray more upon washing. Wooden buttons – and of course, I included a spare:

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

Absolutely no serge-finished details – so the inside of the shirt looks as good as the outside. Below: the french-seam side seam:

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

And finally- the prototype for some business cards (I get asked often enough) as well as a new site design!

R. Gray, 2 Shirts

* I am a dork

Tiger-Striped Undershirt

tiger-striped undershirt (1 hour, $3)

I’m right smack-dab in the middle of tailoring work for clients. After cleaning up my last project, I gave myself permission to spend about an hour on this li’l fella:

Tiger-Striped Undershirt

I simply traced one of Nels’ undershirts – which took about five minutes – and then cut a front and back from a tissue-fabric recently acquired from Britex fabrics. This wonderful 100% cotton knit is so, so beautiful – semi-sheer, lightweight, and rather fussy if you don’t know what you’re doing. Fortuately, I do.

The back, in true undershirt-style, features more of a racerback/cutaway design than the front:

Tiger-Striped Undershirt

A closeup – super-closeup – so you can see the very light and almost slubby texture of the knit:

Tiger-Striped Undershirt

 Summer sheer fabrics are wonderful. You get a great look and coverage, but it feels like you’re wearing nothing at all – especially given the kinds of seam-finishes a bespoke tailor is capable of.

Time to get out on the bike!

Tiger-Striped Undershirt

 

My Son

doing Life right

My Son's Daily How-To Booklet

Nels makes up little booklets of “how to” on how his day goes. Here’s his latest iteration – published with his permission, which is pretty cool. As you can see from the cover above, at first he wouldn’t even let me look in the book, let alone publish it here. He didn’t want photographs of the inside but he let me list the contents here:

1. Pray for this day [includes best-ever stick figure depiction of “prayer”]

2. Exercise! [another great stick figure]

3. Brush your hair & teeth [no more stick figures, guess he got tired ofd drawing them]

4. Wash your face

5. Shower

6. Eat breakfast

7. Do 5 chores

8. Listen to music

9. Play outside

AT NIGHT:

10. Watch cool movies

11. Put retainer on

***

In other news: yes, I made Nels’ “bowling-style” shirt in this photo I just took of him, before he left for a friends’ date. I don’t think I ever took pictures of it when I put it together (and when I searched on my blog, I found this piece from five years ago – #LOLsob!). It has the name “nels” monogrammed on the front left using free-motion machine-stitching. The shirt is constructed in Kaffe Fasset shot cotton, features coconut buttons from Fashion Sewing Supply, and has been washed, dried, and worn many many times since I made it:

My 10 Year Old Son, This Afternoon(Bun-Bun the rabbit’s inadvertantly-discarded raspberry at lower-right)

Today: working on a waxed canvas jacket, and prepping an awesome dinner from the Tex Mex cookbook Nels and I bought Ralph.

Gimme Some Slack! Post 6

gimme some slack! post six: side seams, cuffs, and waistband

Thanks for joining up on the Gimme Some Slack! Sew-a-long. We are on the final stretch! This is the second-to-last post. The final post will be one with the slacks modeled on a child. If I can find a child! I am looking for one.

gimme-slack

Today is going to be all about steam pressing and wonderful, slim cuff and waistband finishes. This is an image-heavy post – 53 images – not because the techniques are difficult, but because I want to show you in detail the exacting work required to get beautiful, wearable, and very comfortable results.

Our progress so far: last month I posted the supply list and timeline, and earlier this month I posted our preparations, including creating our pattern. On the sixth I posted our methods for marking, cutting, and interfacing our fabric pieces. For post four we constructed the darts, front and back, and the pockets, front and back. And in post five, we constructed a totally killer, low-bulk, and beautifully-finished fly front.

Thank you to all who’ve participated, and emailed or commented suggestions and corrections to this sew-a-long. And remember – I am available to support via email, blog comment, and Skype! I will Skype support any stitcher through the months of June and July 2014.

gimme some slack! post five: fly front

gimme-slack

Aw yeeeeeah. Sh*t’s about to get real.

Our progress so far: last month I posted the supply list and timeline, and earlier this month I posted our preparations, including creating our pattern. On the sixth I posted our methods for marking, cutting, and interfacing our fabric pieces. For post four we constructed the darts, front and back, and the pockets, front and back.

Now before we get started, I ain’t gonna lie. This will be the trickiest session. We are putting together a TOTALLY BOSS fly front, using my favorite method. It’s gonna get intense, y’all.

Before we proceed: thank you to all who’ve participated, and emailed or commented suggestions and corrections to this sew-a-long. And remember – I am available to support via email, blog comment, and Skype! I will Skype support any stitcher through the months of June and July 2014.

gimme some slack! post four: darts & pockets

gimme-slack

Good afternoon, or evening, or whatever time it may be for ye!

Our progress so far: last month I posted the supply list and timeline, and earlier this month I posted our preparations, including creating our pattern. On the sixth I posted our methods for marking, cutting, and interfacing our fabric pieces. Today we will be constructing the darts, front and back, and the pockets, front and back.

Thank you to all who’ve participated, and emailed or commented suggestions and corrections to this sew-a-long. And remember – I am available to support via email, blog comment, and Skype! I will Skype support any stitcher through the months of June and July 2014.

Gimme Some Slack

gimme some slack! post three: cutting, marking, and interfacing

Gimme Some Slack

Hello my awesomesauce stitching fiends! Today we get to handle our fabric in earnest. This is big fun as it turns out!

To bring you up to date: last month I posted the supply list and timeline, and earlier this month I posted our preparations, including creating our pattern.

Remember – I am available to support via email, blog comment, and Skype! I will Skype support any stitcher through the months of June and July 2014.

Gimme Some Slack

gimme some slack! post two: making our pattern; prepping our materials

Gimme Some Slack

Hello my awesomesauce stitching fiends! This is our first get-to-it post! I am really happen to have you join me! Both of you! I jest, I jest.

Last month I posted the supply list and timeline so y’all should be ready to get going. Today we’ll be fondling fabric (a little) and doing some tracing (a lot).  Before we start, I’m going to talk briefly about what to expect in undertaking this project.

Remember – I am available to support via email, blog comment, and Skype! I will Skype support any stitcher through the months of June and July 2014.