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I am a mother, a grandmother, and a teacher. But whatever happens in my life, I keep sewing. I have worked as a political communicator and now as a teacher in my formal life. I have also written extensively on sewing. I have been a frequent contributor and contributing editor of Threads magazine and the Australian magazine Dressmaking with Stitches. My book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge was published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon


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Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Two more stress free shirt sewing hints

Hi folks.

There are a few other short tips on stress free shirt sewing that I would like to make sure to pass on. 

The first one, on buttonholes was mentioned in my last week's free newsletter for new and returning sewists (you can sign up by sending me a message through the form at the top of this page), but I think is worth repeating for those who missed it.

First up, shirt plackets.

These aren't too hard if you are methodical about it, but the marking can be a pain. What I do now for any detail the requires precision, like a welt pocket or these plackets, is to trace off the stitching/cutting line markings on tracing paper and pin that directly to the fabric.

Then, using a smaller than normal stitch length because this will make removing the paper easier, I stitch and cut the fabric as required. Note that below I have made these so many times I no longer put in the slash lines within the stitching box but of course you can do that:

Secondly I spray starch the buttonhole area before I make buttonholes in fine fabrics. I find that the dense satin stitching pulls in the fabric. This reduces the cutting area to next to nothing, and the starching eliminates this. Below is a shot of two buttonholes. The larger one at the bottom was made on starched fabric. The small one at the top was made in fabric that had not been starched. Both samples were made in two layers of fabric and one layer of interfacing:

On another note I have revised the instructions for french seaming the shirt in the last post. It appears that I reversed the right/wrong side parts, not surprising if you know my need for good copy editing, and I apologize if there was any confusion.

Finally I got an email yesterday that said one of the best men's shirt patterns I use the All Day Shirt by Liesl is on sale this week, until Saturday, for 50% off with the discount code  July2019 


Unknown said...

You've mentioned the tracing trick before, and I've used it a couple of times now! I'm thinking it might be useful for welt pockets as well, but I never remember it in time.

Prue said...

My favourite woman's shirt pattern is the Liesel and Co classic shirt and has very good instructions for plackets. Also great fit - great boyfriend style but not too slouchy!

Anonymous said...

broken link for the Liesl shirt (although it can be figured out)

Natalia said...

even when I search via the website and use their own link, the shirt pattern is "no longer available." Not sure how Anon above figured it out otherwise.

Barbara said...

Don't know what happened there with the shirt link. I put it in again and it worked for me, please let me know if you still have trouble!

Natalia said...

Not that it matters now, but I see you've changed the pattern link to go to the intro article about the pattern instead of the pattern itself; probably the first link was to the paper pattern because that is no longer available. Thanks for looking into it! :) Thanks for this wonderful series too! <3