Man Sewing {Thread Theory Fairfield Shirt}



So hello, here we are in 2019. The shirts in this post were sewn last year though, it’s just a lengthy process trying to get my husband in front of the camera. Shirts though, I’ve found a love for them over time. The little extra details and the fiddly bits are all quite rewarding when you pull them off. It’s a bit like bra sewing, I guess – little details that will make you yell, either in frustration or jubilation.


I bought the Thread Theory Fairfield pattern during the black Friday sales, so it was quite a bargain. I grabbed the PDF version because they had an A0 option (I was NOT taping this sucker together) and toddled off to Officeworks to print it. I toiled this shirt because upon googling reviews, I ready many times over that it runs small. As in, comes up smaller than the finished measurements on the pattern. I measured my husband according to the very helpful Sewalong and his measurements were all over the chart. Apparently he has a big neck (really, though? I don’t think so) as well as long arms (that’s true and unsurprising for a 6’4″ human). So I toiled and made the medium, graded up to the large at the neck with some added length for height. And what do you know? It came up too small all over – even though he fit smack into the body measurements.


Anyway. For his next version, I went with the size large, but graded down to a medium at the shoulders and armscyes and up to an extra large at the neck, as well as adding some length to the sleeves and the body, once again. And hey, look – that fit is pretty good! Still too tight at the neck (doing the top button up is uncomfortable) but he doesn’t mind as he never has a reason to button all the way to the top. This version is made from some really lovely Egyptian Cotton shirting from The Remnant Warehouse.



New work shirt for the worker. I photographed it untucked to show the length. But he wears them tucked for work. Actually, this is a problem with RTW for him, shirts tend to be too short and they come untucked easily. Not this one though.


I enjoyed making that one and learned so much that I immediately cut out another in this Dear Stella quilting cotton. I know, quilting cotton. The big companies have realised we use QC for clothes now though and some of them feel amazing. This one drapes really quite nicely and so does the Art Gallery range. I love them.



As a rule, he’s not much of a print wearer, but when this fabric arrived I asked if he liked it and to my absolute shock, he said yes. He later told me it’s because it reminds him of Sailor Jerry rum, but whatever, I jumped on the idea of making him a shirt with it.


Same process again, you can see the detail that has gone into designing this pattern. Every seam is enclosed, whether it’s frenched or flat felled. Flat felled armscyes scared the hell out of me at first, but the instructions are awesome and the sewalong is really helpful too and honestly, the end result is so worth it.


It was also my first time doing tower plackets and now I love them.



So here we have a happy husband. One new work shirt, the other more of a casual Friday thing. And a wife that is pretty bloody chuffed with her efforts, just quietly. Yes, he grew a beard between shoots. He does grown them quite quickly, but it does show how long it took me to get him into it.





Man Sewing {Thread Theory Jedediah Pants}

I apologise in advance for the length of this post.


I’ve always seen sewing as a set of levels. You start out on the lower levels – straight lines on wovens etc and move up through the levels – buttonholes, basic zippers, set in sleeves, knits etc. Pants are a new level for me, not only because of the zip fly but also due to the fitting required.


This year I made it my goal to sew a pair of jeans for myself. But after washing a pair of my husband’s near transparent work pants, I figured maybe I’d start with pants for him instead, to ease me into the world of pants. His body must be easier to fit than mine, right?


Yep. Correct. He does have a bit of trouble buying work pants though, mostly because of his impatience with shopping but also partly due to his height. He’s 6’4″ and generally a 34″ waist, sometimes a 32″ though. He also has no butt (just like me – what hope do our children have?) and skinny legs. He’s always had an aversion to pants and jeans with narrower legs and as a result gets around in work pants that look like they belong in 1995. I planned to change that.


Patterns for men are few and far between. Decent patterns for men are like hen’s teeth. Have you looked through the pattern books for men’s patterns from the Big 4 companies? Appalling. I knew that for my first foray into pants I would need something modern and indie. Something that wouldn’t require a lot of adjustments. Enter Thread Theory’s Jedediah pattern.


They’re described as a slim fit, chino -style trousers or shorts pattern. That perfect line between casual and dressy. I love the binding finish and the option to do french or flat felled seams. I couldn’t figure out the waistband finishing instructions for the life of me, so did them my own way. There is an excellent youtube video for the fly, so that wasn’t a problem at all – actually much easier than I was anticipating!

I started with the 34 for him and made them from a cheapy gaberdine that I picked up from The Remnant Warehouse. Straight off the pattern they were a decent fit, but too small in the waist and too narrow in the lower leg. Length was perfect though. Ok. Round two – the size 36, which I made from a navy wool blend (also from The Remnant Warehouse).


They came up ok, but much bigger in the waist. What? A bit too big in the legs too, so I brought those in. The waist I couldn’t really change without doing a lot of seam ripping but he was happy to wear them, so I left it. He is used to RTW, after all. I was a bit puzzled at the difference in waist size but put it down to the fabric stretching out a bit.


Enter pair three. Once again from the gaberdine I used from the toile (I had just enough left over for another pair). This time I did a slight flat seat adjustment and graded between the 34 and 36 at the waist and legs. This has to be it. Uh, no – still big at the waist. WTF MAN?! I dug out the toile pair and compared the finished measurements to those on the pattern. I have no idea what happened but my toile pair were 1.5 inches smaller at the waist than they should have been. Oops. Possibly due to some error in the fly construction, but I’m still not sure.


Oh well, still quite a decent fit and he’s a bit fan of the Pacman pockets and binding. So am I, if I’m honest.


Enter pair four. Oh yes, I’m like a dog with a bone. Size 34 with a flat seat adjustment and a bit of width added to the lower legs (not that you can see that here, because they’re shorts). This pair from cotton drill. My pants-making is now like a well oiled machine and I’m finally pretty happy with the fit.



A bit no-bum in the seat, but that’s how RTW fits him too. Exacerbated by hands in pockets also. The drill seems to have a lot more give than the sturdy grey gaberdine used in the last pair.


The waist fits well, I’m loving the cuffs and narrower legs on him (he was stuck in the 90s with his wide legged shorts too).


He is what polite people would call ‘thrifty’. I say tight arse. So he’s bloody thrilled that I can now make him shorts and pants. Plus he gets out of shopping. It’s win-win.