White shirt: Burda 10/2008 #113

Sunday 29 November 2020

 woman wearing a white shirt, black pants and red lipstick

A white shirt may never go out of style, but it can certainly get grubby and stained beyond repair which is why I make a new one at least once a year. I wear a lot of sunscreen, and that tends to turn the cuffs and collars quite brown that even bleach can't remove. Usually I make a simple fitted button up shirt, but this time I decided to try something a little bit different with some cool details. This pattern is from Burda in 2008 when they were still Burda World of Fashion. I've made this shirt once before for my mum, and have been meaning to make myself one for at least the last decade.

This shirt pattern not only ticks all my boxes - three quarter sleeves with a button tab, raglan sleeves, vertical darts for fitting - but it also offers a little bit more with a looped tab down the front covering the button placket. It certainly adds quite a lot of interest to an otherwise simple shirt. The pattern is 10/2008 #113 which I can't see is available for download, but if you ever see this issue for sale I can highly recommend it, there are quite a few good patterns in it.

Burda sewing pattern

That looped strip was really quite simple to make - it's essentially just horizontal lines sewn to the shirt halfway between each buttonhole, and then press the fabric downwards towards the hem.

white shirt close up of buttons

close up of white shirt front

I did mess up the sewing order though - the strip should have been added before the collar, so that the top end of the extra strip would be enclosed within the shirt stand. I added mine after I had sewn the collar on, so I've done a dodgy fix of just topstitching it close to the collar stand seam line - it's clearly visible in the photo below but I doubt anyone else will get close enough to notice.

close up of a white collar shirt

The fabric I've used is a thick textured white cotton that is probably a bit too stiff for a shirt, but it helps give the looped front and sleeves a bit of structure. It means the back puffs out a bit, which I could fix by making the vertical darts a bit deeper, but I think I'll leave it because it's not too bad.

the back view of a woman wearing a white shirt

I also find the way the raglan sleeves meet together as a point on the shoulder very satisfying - it's those little details that people who don't sew will never see but it makes me happy.

close up of a shoulder seam in a white shirt

I found the sizing of this shirt to be quite generous - I made my usual size 34 at the shoulders and grading out to a size 40 at the hips. There is a lot of excess fabric around the arms - the armscye sits quite low and the sleeves are very wide. I think in a softer fabric with more drape this would be fine but it does feel a bit bunchy in this thicker fabric.

woman wearing a white shirt

I think this is a fantastic pattern, and I can't believe I waited so many years before I made it! I think the loop strip could be added to almost any shirt pattern, and ribbon could be used instead of the shirt fabric so possibly another one of these style shirts is in my near(ish) future.

woman posing in a white shirt and black pants

Shoulders that will poke your eyes out: New Look 6013

Wednesday 11 November 2020

One of the great things about sewing is that you're not limited to what's available in the shops - you can make what you want. One of the less great things is not finding out until after you've put in some time and effort that what you're making really isn't you!

I do like my work jackets to have a bit of interest about them - either a bright colour other than navy or black, or an interesting cut like a shawl collar rather than a standard notched collar. Which has led to my recently finished jacket - a shawl collar, a minty textured wool and formerly some crazy shoulders:

New Look 6013 mint green wool shawl collar jacket

I say formerly because I ended up pulling off the crazy sleeves and re-sewed on some normal fitting sleeves which is what you seen in the photo. This is New Look 6013, a pattern that is now OOP. I made the dress once before in 2018 from a polka dot linen which I still wear thanks to it being not too fitted. 


New Look 6013 sewing pattern www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

The sleeve heads have an inverted pleat at the shoulder head which looks good on the model and on my dress form but just looked ridiculous on me. They shoulder head sticks out quite high above my natural shoulder level and to top it off the sleeves were quite wide and baggy too:

New Look 6013 mint green jacket shoulder www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

New Look 6013 mint green jacket pleated shoulder www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

Instead I used a standard sleeve off another New Look pattern to cut out some normal sleeves to sew on. You can see the difference in shape in the photo below.

New Look 6013 sleeve comparison www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

Even though the sleeve head of the new sleeve eased nicely into the shoulder seam, I can see there are terrible drag marks on the sleeves indicating that I need to reshape the shoulder slightly. Well I won't fix this, but it's good to know for the future.

New Look 6013 mint green jacket www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

For the back view instead of cutting on the fold I added a centre back seam so I could shape the seam better to suit my curves. This together with the princess seams means I got quite a nice fit in the back:

New Look 6013 mint green jacket www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

I made faux welt pockets because the jacket is so cropped it's unlikely I'll ever put my hands in them and the pocket bags would be so shallow anyway. The welts add a bit of interest to the front and even though I was worried they sit too close to the hemline I think overall they still looked balanced.

New Look 6013 mint green jacket www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

The final change I made to the pattern was to insert a lining. The pattern is meant to be an unlined jacket, but with several layers of interfacing in key places like the shoulder area, princess seams that need to be clipped to be pressed open and the messiness of welt pockets I think a lining is really necessary to cover up all that internal structure. Plus being a wool jacket it will wear better with a slippery lining.

New Look 6013 mint green jacket www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

This fabric was a total bargain - bought from the Sewing Basket charity fabric store earlier this year for a few dollars. When I spied this fabric in it's beautiful minty loveliness, I was reminded of one of my favourite costumes from the movie The Dressmaker:

A photo from the movie of The Dressmaker

All I need now is some cream wide leg pants and an awesome hat and I'll be set for a glamorous return to the office when it reopens! After all these months of casual wear whilst working from home I'm actually quite eager for a bit of dressing up on the few days a week that I'll be in the office.

So my final thoughts: if you like a bit of drama then I can highly recommend this pattern to you! The shawl collar is easy to construct, the princess seams make it easy to fit and overall it's quite a nice little jacket. If like me you prefer your clothes to be a bit more subdued, the sleeve is easily interchanged and you can still have a great jacket without the wow factor.

New Look 6013 mint green jacket www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com