Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Vanity, thy name is Man ...

With a long weekend ahead of me, I had three garments cut and ready to sew, as well as a rough plan in my head for joining the June Capsule Contest at Stitchers Guild. Sadly, it all went out the window. DH received a call from his parents to say that his grandmother had died. The funeral is on Friday, necessitating a trip to Sydney. I have been offering to make him some clothes for ages, but he kept telling me not to worry because he had plenty of clothes. So, faced with a trip to Sydney and the need to wear something other than the holey t-shirts and ripped shorts he wears at home, he asked me to make him some clothes.

I've been working on a shirt pattern for him for some time. The fitting problems have been numerous. First of all his chest size is about four sizes bigger than his waist. There is a 22inch difference between his chest and his waist. To get a shirt to fit his chest, there is a massive amount of extra fabric at his waist. Add to that the fact that his neck is larger and the muscle that goes from his neck to shoulder is huge and creates a sloping shoulder effect and a large fold of fabric at the front.
When I saw BWOF 03-2009-132 with darts in the back, I thought I would give it a whirl. I did an adjustment to the shoulder, using the technique described in the Threads fitting DVD for a sloping shoulder. This caused DH some concern, because he likes to think he has big square shoulders and didn't like me calling it a sloping shoulder adjustment. So I called it a thick neck adjustment. I don't think he liked that either, but he left me alone after that. The adjustment on the Threads DVD was for a shoulder seam, not a yoke, so I had to make a few guesses. DH is short, so I had to shorten the shirt as well as the sleeves.

Long story short, I made two shirts from the altered pattern. I ended up taking the darts in a little more and shaping the side seams a little more than the pattern, but now DH has two shirts that actually show his shape, rather than hang like a sack. Not that you can tell that from these pictures. Temperamental thing he is, he said he'd tried the shirts on too many times already and why did I want him to put them on again???



This is a butter yellow linen with short sleeves. DH requested no collar, so I went with the Nehru look.
This is the long sleeved version, again with a Nehru collar, but this time I made it a little narrower, as DH was worried about looking like he has no neck. I know it's a commonly held belief that women are vain, but I swear that DH is the most vain person I have ever met. Given that I have spent most of my working life in the film industry working with self-centred actors, this is saying something!

Tonight I am making him a pair of corduroy jeans in black. I made him a pair of light cord pants in brown a couple of weeks ago to go with a cord jacket I made him last year, so that gives him two outfits to wear.
As for me, I have joined the June Capsule Contest requiring a four piece wardrobe based on an orphan. Here is my orphan. It's a lovely, soft chartreuse wool that I have lined with a ridiculous purple snoopy fabric. I made this about 7 years ago, when I didn't know much about sewing jackets. It's two sizes too big and it needs to be underlined as well as having buttons put on. I will, at a later date, take it apart and fix the obvious problems, but for now I need to figure out what to wear with it. I'm thinking brown pants. Funnily enough, the brown striped fabric I used for DH's shirt has this very green in it. I'll see if I can get some more. I'm still on the hunt for something else to go with this, so any suggestions are welcome!

Parting shot - here are my scissors. On the left is a brand new pair of Mundial Cushion Soft, This is my second pair - the first are still going strong after 12 years but are currently out being sharpened. The purple pair I bought a few weeks ago while I was waiting on the new Mundial scissors. They are titanium, I've forgotten what brand. I've decided to use these for microfibres and things that blunt scissors quickly. The next ones are my pattern cutting scissors and have served me well over the years. The final pair is my snips. I buy these six a time and chuck them when they start to blunt. I used to have them on a lenght of elastic I wore around my neck, but I kept cutting it, so I don't do that anymore. The ribbon is there because I always bury them under crap on the table.

At least with DH away for a while, I'll have time to sew without anyone hassling me ...

7 comments:

Gail said...

Wow Carol your productivity always bowls me over. You man sounds like mine who never wants new clothes. I bought Kwik Sew 3422 to make him some shirts, but he won't even let me take his measurements!

Vicki said...

Great shirts! And your jacket is lovely. Good luck with the capsule contest :)

gwensews said...

Men--aren't they a hoot? You did a fantastic job on hubby's shirts. good luck with the contest!

The Slapdash Sewist said...

The shirts look great! I'm so impressed with sewists who make men's shirts. Love that jacket, too.

Faye Lewis said...

You always make the nicest jackets, they are your forte!

laura said...

If Hans depended on me to make his clothes; he wouldn't have any! I wish I had the ability to alter patterns for myself let alone someone else. Those shirts you made look great.

Gail said...

You have an award. Go to my blog to see what it is.