Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Project 43: Work Shirts

Doug asked me to make him some shirts to wear at work, where he provides direct assistance to disabled people. He wanted something comfortable and casual, but a little more tailored than a t-shirt. He really enjoys wearing the aloha shirt I made him, so I went back to that pattern as a starting point.

An aloha shirt, by definition, is made out of a statement fabric. This (these) shirts, however, were to be made out of simple, solid-colour broadcloth. There are two features of the aloha shirt pattern that I think are themselves a little too plain to be executed in a plain fabric.

First, the collar. An aloha shirt usually has a rolled collar, which consists of one part, with lapels forming from the points of the neck opening rolling back. (see here, here, and here) In a plain fabric, I wanted a stand collar, which is what you typically see on a mens dress shirt.

Second, the back. The simple aloha shirt design has a one-piece back which looks just great in a Hawaiian print, but in plan broadcloth looks more like surgical scrubs than a tailored shirt. Although the original pattern didn't include one, I drafted the pieces for a two-layer yoke with a box pleat, again like you're used to seeing in a mens dress shirt.

Construction went really well. I think it looks pretty darn close to RTW. (ready to wear - store bought). Once I have the official sign-off, I'll go into production mode and churn out a half dozen of them. Don't worry though, Dear Reader. I won't bore you with blog posts about each one.

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