Easy Linen Shirt (from a linen skirt)

5 Mar

I’ve been joining in the Sewing for Boys sew-along hosted by Stacey,  the pattern chosen for March is the Easy Linen Shirt.  Before looking at the pattern I wondered about the use of the word ‘easy’, you may know that I’m not often found sewing clothes but it does happen occasionally so I was hoping that ‘easy’ truly meant that.

On Saturday I was pretty tired after a late night on Thursday and then the Dress a Girl sewing evening on Friday (more about that soon) but something made me think it would be a good idea to tidy up my sewing space and sort out my fabric stash (that would have been because we had friends coming for breakfast on Sunday morning).  The tidying wasn’t too bad, the sorting the fabric stash though was a different matter, I have 2 cupboards, one with glass doors where you can see my gorgeous, lovely fabrics and then a cupboard underneath with everything else shoved in.  I had a sort of the bottom cupboard and while doing so I found this:

Linen skirt

It’s a skirt my friend Kath gave me, I think she was given it by a friend, it’s not something I would ever wear, mainly because I rarely wear skirts, I must admit I didn’t even try it on to see if it fitted! Anyway I decided there and then it would be great to refashion into a ‘Easy Linen Shirt’ for Mathias. Thanks Kath!

On Saturday evening the children were in bed and asleep by 7pm so while Tobit was making dinner I traced the pattern pieces ready to cut.  The smallest size the shirt comes in is 2-3yrs so I went for that one.

Sunday before lunch I took the skirt apart, it was made of 4 panels, I then tried to work out if it was possible to get all pattern pieces out of the fabric I had.  I could do it if I cut the back of the shirt in 2 pieces not one, even so it was all a really tight fit.  It never ceases to amaze me how big pattern pieces are for small children’s clothes.

The afternoon came and Tobit took the children out for a chilly walk at Haldon Forest, I debated whether to sleep or sew, the sewing won but only just – I was so tired!   The pattern pieces were cut and I was ready to sew with a whole afternoon of peace and quiet!  So I got on and sewed the shirt according to the instructions, I french seamed the sides and sleeves of the shirt as recommended.  It really was easy to make.  My only slight problem was fitting the collar to the shirt, and this was purely my fault.  As I had made the back piece out of 2 rather than 1 piece I had to sew them together and I didn’t measure to make sure that the back piece once sewn together was the correct size.  So there are a couple of tiny puckers at the top of the shirt where it is attached to the collar.  But you wouldn’t notice, it really is minor.

Easy Linen Shirt

So that is what it looks like hanging, I tried it on Mathias and it is too big at the moment, he is on the small side for his age, if he has a growth spurt it might fit him in the summer. (The skirt had a washing label that said ‘dry clean only’ but I’ll be ignoring that and hoping for the best.

Easy Linen Shirt

Close up where you can see some of the top stitching.

Easy Linen Shirt

I am delighted with my afternoons (and a bit) work. If you want a simple shirt pattern I recommend this one. I now need to come up with some embellishment to meet the sew-along rules, I’m thinking about some simple, subtle stitching somewhere.  If you have any suggestions or examples please let me know – thanks.

AND as very often happens when I make something, Leah asks if it is for her, ‘nope, this one is for Mathias when he’s grown a bit more’, ‘Mummy, it might just fit me then’. I didn’t let her try it on, but this shirt could easily be made for a girl as a boy.  Check out the Sewing for Boys flickr group to see variations of this pattern, including hoods!

Linking up with:

Sew Happy Geek

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5 thoughts on “Easy Linen Shirt (from a linen skirt)

  1. Love the casual look of the shirt and finished perfectly with the topstitching!!! I’ve always liked collars like this one. A fabulous upcycle!!! My copy of ‘Sewing for Boys’ arrived the other day and I’m looking forward to making something from it. I’ll check out the link to the sew-along. Thanks for sharing…

  2. Pingback: Finished: Easy Linen Shirt | mary emmens

  3. Pingback: Zakka Style sew along: The House Pouch | mary emmens

  4. This shirt came out beautifully. I was just last night going through my upcycle stash trying to figure out which fabric to use to make this shirt for my son and then how I would embellish it. Still decisions to be made before I start, but I loved having the opportunity to see yours! I also didn’t know about the flicker group so I’ll be headed there now. 🙂

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