Button-up Willamette Shirt

 

I made the perfect match!  I paired the gingham fabric I bought at an estate sale a few years ago for $1 with the Willamette pattern by Hey June Handmade.

The pattern is for a casual boxy shirt with cut-on short sleeves, a collar,  and a placket that is sewn together instead of buttoned.

This pattern is easier and quicker to sew than a traditional shirt because there isn’t a collar stand, armhole seams, or even buttonholes.  However, I opted to change the pattern and made 5 buttonholes.  I used another shirt as a guide for placement.

I liked the opportunities in this pattern to play with the direction of my fabric, and cut the yoke, collar, and cuffs on the bias.  I decided to make the pockets blend in and cut them straight of grain.

I sewed a size 10 based on my high bust measurement.  It’s roomy with about 8 inches of ease, and doesn’t pull at all across the chest.  I could go down a size but glad I didn’t sew my full bust size of 14 which would have been too big for my shoulders and arms.

I believe the lavender gingham fabric to be a cotton and polyester blend.  It’s crisp, doesn’t wrinkle, and was a breeze to to sew.

I learned three new skills sewing the Willamette shirt.

  1. Sewing a double yoke:  This is sewn with a burrito technique to result in a clean finish with no raw edges visible on the inside. I did get it wrong the first time, and had to unpick.
  2. Cutting pattern pieces on the bias:  Although I have cut bias strips many times, I haven’t cut pattern pieces that way and had to look up how to do it.   I drew cross grain lines and then 45 degree grain lines on the pattern pieces.
  3. Sewing buttons on by machine:  I used the pretty blue foot that came with the machine for the first time.  I used fabric glue to keep the buttons in place before putting the foot down on top of them.  I also put the darning plate on to disengage the feed dogs.The back view:

I’m wearing the shirt with two other handmades: the Mountain View shorts and the Sorrento Bucket hat.  This pose shows the amount of ease in the shirt.

Gingham has a country look, doesn’t it?  I finished the shirt before Memorial Day weekend, and wore it out to go shopping.  I like this pattern.  It’s a nice change from both tee shirts and wide necked tops, and I would make a variation of it again.

 

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