An update – a few photos of one of my favorite clients, my son, in his custom-made flannel shirt.
We are more or less halfway through our first round of the flannel shirt sew-a-long. If you’re starting to want to make one of these for the holidays, you still have time! Read-up on the supply list and go from there. The second sew-a-long starts December 1st. Here is our overview:
Hello my awesomesauce stitching fiends! Yes, I am still on top of this sew-a-long business. “The show must go on”, as they say.
Today we have a fairly easy series of tasks ahead of us in our flannel shirt sew-a-long. You should be pleased with yourself at the session’s end! Among other things, we will be working buttonholes. So be prepared to bust out your manual and practice – ideally on shirt fabric scraps.
Remember – I am available to support via email, blog comment, and Skype! Just last night I had an email from a sew-a-long student and I responded within the hour.
Hello my awesomesauce stitching fiends! Today we are actually fondling and cutting fabric for our flannel shirt sew-a-long! It’s about time!
Remember – I am available to support via email, blog comment, and Skype! In fact, I have a Skype-sewing instructor date tomorrow morning, and you can bet I am excited!
SOooooooOOO guess what. There are like forty or so photos in this section of the sew-a-long and lots of verbiage. Pour yourself a cup of coffee (or tea, or pickle juice, or whatever), and let’s get going!
Hello my awesomesauce stitching fiends! Today we are getting started in earnest on sewing up a flannel shirt. You can post any questions about this section of the sew-a-long here in the comments, and remember – I am available to support via email and Skype!
To catch you up: I’ve already posted the supply list, a bit about what to expect in undertaking this project, and a link to the the Flickr Group (please consider posting your progress!). I’m going to assume you are all caught up and ready to go!
Hello my awesomesauce stitching fiends! Today I am posting the schedule, the Flickr Group, and the Introduction post for my Flannel Shirt Sew-A-Long! Last week, I posted the supply list. Due to some supply issues for those who got on board the sew-a-long a little later, I am going to be having two rounds of sew-a-long. As you can see above, the first starts on Sunday, November 17th and ends Wednesday, November 27th. The second round starts Sunday, December 1st and ends Wednesday, December 9th. Remember, whenever you get started, I will be available to help with much alacrity all through November and December. Never fear, you will get that shirt made! Here is the sew-along overview:
And now, a few notes about making a high-end plaid, flannel menswear-styled shirt:
“I NEVER PROMISED YOU A ROSE GARDEN so PULL UP YOUR BIG-GIRL PANTIES”*
You are IN LUCK my readers, as this holiday season I am hosting a flannel shirt sew-a-long here at kelly.hogaboom.org! Here is our overview:
Briefly: in this sew-a-long, I will be showing the reader how to sew up a masculine-styled flannel long-sleeved shirt. Like, I am living IN THE LAND of OG flannel awesomeness and I love sewing menswear – so this seems appropriate. I will sew the shirt, step-by-step, in installments with photographs and verbal descriptions. The installments will begin November 17th and finish November 27th.
This sew-a-long is appropriate for beginners and intermediate stitchers. I will be offering many kinds of support – in the comments here, via email or twitter, and through Skype. Local stitchers can expect hand’s-on help, if they need it!
A few caveats.
1. I will be showing you how to sew a flannel shirt the best way I know how. Every single pattern out there comes with instructions; by participating in this sew-a-long I’m assuming you want something different than those instructions. If you follow this sew-a-long I suggest you follow it to the letter to get the results I get.
2. I will be making a simple alteration to the size, but in general, this post will not be covering pattern alterations for fit. Feel free to post any questions about size adjustments and fit in the comments.
3. For November and December 2013 only, I will be available to Skype with anyone who wants one-on-one help. Take advantage of this service! If this is something you want, please text me at 360.500.3287 and we can set something up.
4. I am putting together a shirt-sewing kit for the holiday season, and I will be briefly mentioning this kit in the posts. If you can’t take that kind of self-promotion, be warned!
And now – on to the prequel post! You will want to get your supplies fairly soon, and the pattern I am using is primarily available by mail.*
Clockwise from top: several yards 100% cotton plaid flannel, a shirt pattern (Jalie 2111), lightweight fusible interfacing, buttons, thread, a cotton remnant (for pocket lining), and a satin remnant (for cuff lining). Please read through some details about supplies, and feel free to post any questions in the comments.
100% cotton plaid flannel: I am sad to report that finding high-quality cotton flannel is a bit tricky. It’s easy to find a flannel that looks gorgeous on the bolt, but when washed, does not perform well. However, if you are careful during construction, meticulous in detail, and hand-wash or dry-clean your resultant garment, even a mid-quality flannel will perform and look beautiful for years. Find a cotton flannel that feels cozy and looks beautiful. There are so many beautiful flannels out there; it becomes hard to pick just one! Select the needed yardage as listed on the back of the pattern envelope (and comment here if you are confused as to how to do this). You need to add 1/2 yard to your yardage if you are an experienced sewist; add 1 yard to your yardage if you are a beginner. I know this “extra” sounds like a lot. But we are going to be cutting on the bias, matching plaids, and adding a pocket. If you’re learning something, don’t skimp on supplies. Treat yourself to enough slack you won’t get frustrated!
Shirt pattern: I opted for Jalie 2111 because I enjoy Jalie’s patterns and they come with an incredible size range per pattern – in this case, 22 sizes! (This means you can make matching shirts for members in your family, no matter how big or small). The Jalie pattern is likely not available at any brick and mortar shop near you. The fastest shipping and the cheapest options are available through Pattern Review; but you can also order directly from Jalie itself. By the way, this pattern will soon be out of print, so grab one while you still can!
Interfacing: I far prefer Pam Erny’s Fashion Sewing Supply interfacings to anything else I’ve used (although you can use a lower-quality interfacing if you like, from your local fabric store). You want a fusible, lightweight interfacing. One such product I adore is the Pro-WEFT Supreme Lightweight Fusible Interfacing. You can purchase it in a natural or charcoal colorway; the minimum-order yard cut will be adequate for this shirt. However, I love this interfacing and use it in many applications, so go ahead and order as much as you like as you will never regret it! (NAYY)
Buttons: The shirt uses buttons in two sizes. I have, shown here, bulk-purchase plastic buttons – 5/8″ and 3/8″ – obtained at JoAnn’s for dirt-cheap. However, higher-end or vintage buttons are a lovely touch. You need a lot of buttons for this shirt, and the back of the Jalie pattern will show you precisely how many, once you know what size you will be working with. Speaking of buttons – I notice Pam Erny’s online shop has several great button options, as well. If you end up liking shirt-making, you may want to buy shirt buttons in larger quantities. Buying them per-card in a fabric store is expensive, and sometimes the fabric store doesn’t have enough of the ones you like! #trueStory
Thread: Use an all-purpose thread. I generally like Mettlers. Polyester, or polyester-wrapped cotton, is strongest. 100% cotton will work in a pinch as well. One large spool should be adequate.
Cotton remnant: I have a pocket-making method that lines the pockets, providing a lovely finish and a pocket that feels great from the inside. You need a piece of 100% high-quality cotton fabric, at least 12″ by 8″. Choose a color that blends in well with your plaid flannel.
Satin remnant: If you’ve worn a higher-end flannel shirt you may notice some of the inner details are made up in satin. This feels and looks luxurious! For the best results, you want a firm-bodied, woven satin (I love fabric.com’s slipper satin – it is inexpensive, especially when on sale, and works well as a firm lining for coats); choose a color that compliments your plaid flannel.
Now – beginners. In addition to the abovementioned supplies, you need general sewing supplies: good fabric scissors, a tracing medium, pen, and pencil; a working sewing machine, a machine needle (a sharp or universal in size 12 or so, depending on how thick your flannel is), a seam-ripper, a hand-sewing needle, a steam iron and ironing board. Some more goodies that will help, but are not essential: a pair of pinking shears, Steam-A-Seam Lite tape (or similar product), laundry spray starch, Fray Check (or similar product), and 100% beeswax (to strengthen thread).
You can also help other people find this sew-a-long in a timely fashion, by posting the badge to your own blog, or sharing via Tumblr/Twitter, Facebook (you can “Like” my page for updates), et cetera. The more people who participate, the better this sew-a-long will be, as I will be making corrections and additions as per feedback. Seamsters in the future will stumble on these posts and be glad for them!
You can also subscribe by RSS to either my sew-a-long feed (in which case you will see all future sew-a-longs when I post them) or just the feed for the flannel shirt sew-a-long! If you’d like another subscription option, email me and let me know. kelly AT hogaboom DOT org.
To post this badge on your site, copy the text below and paste it into your WordPress widget sidebar (or whatever blog software you use). You may also save these to your own computer and upload to your preferred hosting space. Feel free to link back to https://kelly.hogaboom.org/category/sew-a-long/!
* “Can I use a different pattern?” Yes, but please know you may run into trouble regarding some design details. If you haven’t sewn a man’s shirt a time or two, I highly recommend you just order this pattern and do as instructed. The pattern I’ve chosen, Jalie 2111, is a relaxed-fit flannel with a self-faced button placket, collar stand, and back yoke. We will be making a few changes to this Jalie pattern: cutting several pieces on the bias, adding one patch pocket to the shirt – so there are two breast pockets, lining the pockets, and making a slight change to the sleeve placket.