What came first, the pattern or the fabric? This was a classic case of falling for some fabric in Abakhan but without a real plan of what to do with it. What's not to love about this tiger print though!!
Too good to risk on a pattern that hadn't been tried and tested, it was a toss up between the McCalls 7575 shirt (great for work, tucks in nicely to jeans) or the Butterick 5895 shirt (retro vibes, cute tie waist, cheeky flash of abs). Already having got 4 McCalls 7575s hanging in the wardrobe and only one Butterick 5895, and despite the lack of appropriate weather to wear it, I opted for the tie waist shirt... I promise it's not just because 6 pattern pieces to cut out seemed more appealing than the 17 for the button down shirt!
It was super quick to cut out seeing as I didn't need to match the pattern and could cut out the three pieces with the fabric doubled. The pieces are such a funny shape, it's really exciting watching them turn into a shirt!! I used a lightweight iron on interfacing on the facing as my fabric is quite light, and there's not much strain on the button area. Also the tie front needs to be drapey enough to make a nice knot.
As the front and sleeve is cut all in one, there is some clever shaping from both a bust dart and a sneaky shoulder dart that reduces the roominess in the bust. I was a little worried that I would wish I'd taken a bit more in to make the chest a little tighter, but as this fabric is a little lighter than that of my previous, the drape is a little nicer in the sleeve to bust area.
The fiddliest bit of making this shirt is definitely the neck area. It requires you to reinforce corners at the dots and then snip upto the dot to get the perfect angle where the collar meets the shoulder. With all the reinforcing stitching and the stay stitching, it's important everything is really neat at these pivots or you risk your stitches showing on the shoulder. Luckily though, the collar does flap over this join, so as long as everything is flat and you don't accidentally create a tuck on one side of the stitching you should be okay.
I love the way the collar crosses over at the back. It's a really cute design feature but also its a lot easier attaching this than adding a separate collar would be! It then folds out into super cool retro-looking lapels. It think my pattern placement could have been a bit smarter as one side of the blouse looks a little tiger-lite compared to the other, but that's always the gamble when cutting on the fold. I think there's enough going on with the shirt as a whole for it not to be too noticeable though.
I understitched the facing of the lapels as far as I could go, taking extra care to try and match where I started on each side as I knew this would be visible. This helps keep the facing in place so that the collar looks really neat. My favourite bit is probably clipping the curves, trimming the corners then turning that facing to the inside and revealing those lovely ties!
I did a narrow hem on both the bottom back and the sleeves (the front is encased by the facing)- overlocking the edge, turning up once and then stitching at half the width of my foot.
The last step was of course the trickiest... Buttonholes! Ahhh I do hate making button holes! And my machine doesn't seem to enjoy it either which doesn't make the process any more enjoyable.
I found these cute buttons in my gran's old button stash. Usually I'm rooting round in there for hours trying to find a set to match! But luckily this time these 4 were all ready and waiting for me. I thought the colour was a little bit unusual, but a little bit regal and a compliment to some of the greeny-blues in the print. My buttonholes were perhaps a millimeter or so too tight but they are all perfectly straight and in the right place so I don't care! The fit of the shirt allows for the buttons not to be under too much strain so they sit very happily :)
Typically, I've made a very seasonally inappropriate shirt! It's a bit cold around the midriff haha, but I guess the great thing about this shirt is you can team it with a vest top for some extra coverage.
I love how the tiger print work's with the 50s vibe of the shirt. I could quite happily make myself a whole army of Butterick 5895s for any occasion! I've seen a few gorgeous ones online in ginghams all ready for strawberry picking in summer.
I'm ready for Spring now please!
A big thank you to FYD Tattoo parlour for letting me take some snaps in-store! Their digs are very aesthetically pleasing! We also took a few shots at Mr Personality on Woodseats - How beautiful is their tiger!
Location: FYD Tattoo, Devonshire Street Sheffield
Currently listening to: Last Ride, Tiger Army