Home / I Just Sewed My First Shirt! by Brian S.

I chose KwikSew #2000 for my shirt pattern because I wanted a shirt that was large and loose for maximum ability to move while fishing. Although this pattern already has a lot of ease, I added to the looseness by adding 1.5” to the body length & going up a size to “extra large” for the body of the shirt, using my regular “large” size for the neck & collar.

The pattern directions were quite clear, starting with constructing the shirt front with patch pockets & flaps, however once this was done, I had difficulty trying to visualize how the outside & inside yoke edges attached to the shirt front & back. I finally figured out that the body of the shirt rolls up between the yoke pieces to create a “pig in a blanket” effect. This attaches the right side of the  inside yoke to the wrong side of the front. I pulled the body of the shirt out through the neck opening. To finish the body, yoke & sleeve seams, I used a “faux” flat-felled seam by machine-stitching the seam, then pressing the seam allowances together to one side and overlocking them without removing any fabric from the edges. Then I topstitched 3/16” from the initial seam.

I goofed one late evening after ripping out the collar stand with it’s attached collar to redo some seriously substandard edge-stitching. Unfortunately, when I put the collar stand/attached collar back on the shirt neck opening, I put it on inside out! The fabric was fraying so badly on the edges… I decided not to rip it out and redo it. I figured that the fish will never notice my mistake! You may notice that the collar turns slightly outward at the front edges instead of having a nice downward and inward roll effect. I learned to use a 1/8″ rolled hem foot to do the bottom hem (with about 80% success) and finished the curved areas by hand.

Although the pattern recommends medium weight woven fabrics (like flannel or corduroy), I used Burlington Moisture Control Sun Blocker fabric. It’s a lightweight synthetic wicking fabric with a high SPF which I thought would be great for those hot sunny June days on the sand flats of the Great Marsh. The color is listed as “dove grey” but  I call it “beach sand” …perfect for saltwater shore fishing! The fabric is soft, densely woven, lightweight, but somewhat slippery to cut. (I used serrated scissors to cut it) and it frays easily. This made  ripping out  stitched seams challenging with it’s ¼” seam allowances. I overlocked some of the raw edges right after cutting out the pieces, but I should have done this with all the cut edges.

I highly recommend this pattern. – I love this loose fitting sporty garment and I hope to get a lot of use out of it next spring!

My next project is a wool winter topcoat!

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