The “Gingham-To-Go” Shirt

I’ve been having a bit of a wardrobe crisis the last couple of months. And a sewing crisis. The wardrobe crisis part is kinda obvious I guess, although for some reason it didn’t occur to me until I was nearly right at the end of my pregnancy – most of my wardrobe just isn’t really suitable for breastfeeding. (Except for the cardigans, and luckily I have heaps of those!) Which means I have very little to wear, and as for those 1940′s and 1950′s style dresses, with their fitted waists? Yeah, well, guess I won’t be wearing those for a while yet. But hey, I can always make myself some more things to wear, right?

And that’s where the sewing crisis comes in. I’m finding it hard to get my head around the idea of making things to wear that may only be the right size for a month or two. (Or longer – heck knows how quickly my shape is going to change at the moment.) I’ve decided skirts and trousers are out due to waists being the least forgiving of fits. Dresses I can always cinch in with a belt. And shirts – I’ve recently discovered the joy of shirts.

Which is rather convenient for this weeks Sew Weekly challenge theme – shirts!

The Facts:

Fabric: somewhere between 0.5 and 1 metre of green and cream gingham that I got from Fabric-a-brac a while ago for $1
Pattern: Home Journal 11553
Year: 1950s
Notions: 5 green buttons from my stash
Time to complete: 2.5 hours
First worn: just a general day – around the house, visit with friends, then a nice walk after dinner up to the water tower where these photos were taken
Wear again?: yep
Total cost: about $1

(Why is it the “Gingham-To-Go” shirt? Well, it’s gingham. (Duh.) And I kinda feel a bit like a snack bar on legs these days, hence the “to go” part.)

This pattern was rather interesting to make up. The instructions were, to put it mildly, confusing as all heck. They’re in multiple locations – on the separate instruction sheet, on the front of the pattern envelope, and on the back of the pattern envelope. Oh, and on one of the pattern pieces, too. You have to read all of them to find out whether or not seam allowance is included. Twice. And even then I felt a bit nervous cutting out the pieces, in case they did actually include seam allowance and I was interpreting the instructions wrong. And that was before I started trying to refer to them for the sewing part….. (Yes, it just got worse.) So even though this shirt is actually nice and easy to put together, I’d put it in the “not for novices” pile just because you have to interpret/ignore/invent the instructions yourself.

I’ve been wanting to make this pattern for a little while now – it’s got four little pleats at each side of the neckline, and inverted tucks at front and back for shaping. And cap sleeves! How cute are cap sleeves?!?

(Although it took me wearing the shirt all day to decide I liked the cap sleeves on me. I liked them when sewing it up, then when I first tried on the shirt I worried they made me look like an American Football player. Now, I like them again. So that’s all good.)

It feels nice to have made something for myself – it’s been nearly two months! And I’m pleased to say that my sewing dilemma is now over and I’m about to go and launch into my next project. Yippie!

And with that, I’ll leave you with my favourite photo from this shoot. Cat graffiti is awesome, no?

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31 responses to “The “Gingham-To-Go” Shirt

  1. Lookin good gorgeous!

  2. Very cool and looks great with the belt too. Well done on working your way through the pattern too, sounds like a real challenge.

    • It was an interesting challenge, that’s for sure! I’m kind of tempted to re-write the instructions so I can refer to them next time I make it up….

  3. As a cap sleeve can, this is an awesome shirt! Looks great on too. people wouldnt believe you have just had a baby in that outfit!

  4. That is a beautiful creation and you look stunning, seriously.

  5. Oh yeah, I like this – great styling too!

  6. Nice blouse! I love cap-sleeves personally. Nice and cool, and also emphasising the shoulders highlights a narrow waist. Or maybe gives you one if you don’t already. So the footballer feeling isn’t accurate I don’t think.

    I love that skirt! I want to run off and make one for myself now! It’s beautiful and elegant and looks great on you.

    • Thank you! :-)

      I must admit that the skirt isn’t one of my creations, but I am very tempted to make one like it in a different colour. It’s in a heavy weight cotton drill, which is what makes it hang so nicely I think.

  7. Pingback: Home Journal 11553 « Patterns patterns patterns

  8. I love this! AND, it looks like the one on the envelope – how often does THAT happen with vintage patterns! Very smart :)

    • Thanks! I must admit, I wasn’t expecting those neckline pleats to look even vaguely like they do on the envelope – those sorts of details never seem to work out as per the illustrations….. So that was a happy surprise. :-)

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  10. Love the shirt, and love the styling! and seriously, who doesn’t appreciate cat graffiti? It’s the best!

  11. What’s not to love about a gingham shirt… especially one of yours! Spot on to the pattern. I love it of course! And most of all I admire that you found the time and the energy! ;-)

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  13. I don’t see football at all and the cap sleeves work perfectly. Very cute.

    Nice one finding time for you to actually sit down, decipher the instructions and sew something just for you. There’s not way I had the time to do that after my kids were born. Not for ages.

  14. Kat I love this outfit on you and was thinking how you so didn’t look like you had just had a bub. And I’m definitely not seeing any footballer qualities in it. I sympathise with the breastfeeding clothes issue – its one of tge good things about when the number of feeds drops as it isn’t such a big issue

  15. You look amazing – love the outfit, and love the graffiti shot… did you seriously JUST have a baby? No one would ever know :)

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