Thursday, October 31, 2019

How Many Sizes of Gingham Can There be in One Shirt?

I had a bunch of red gingham fabrics in different sizes that I was holding onto to make a summer dress. Maybe a Myosotis or another maxi dress but nothing was working fabric & pattern wise so the fabric sat.

Then I saw this shirt online at Soft Surroundings. This isn't a trendy or fashionable site. It has comfortable clothing for women my age who want to look stylish yet comfort is a huge factor in deciding what to wear.

Since I've been on a shirt making tear and am currently looking for different versions to make, this look caught my eye. I could purchase this shirt because the site does offer plus size garments. However, why would I when I own plenty of fabric to duplicate it?

Since I'm taking creative journeys now the challenge of duplicating it really appealed to me. Working out all of the details, choosing fabrics, buttons, making decisions about the construction and fabric layout is way more enticing to me than loading it into a cart and purchasing it.

Supply List ~
1 yard of 1" red/white gingham fabric from StyleMaker Fabrics
1.5 yards of 1/4" red/white gingham fabric from Fabric Mart
1.5 yards of 2" red/white gingham fabric from
13 - 5/8" white buttons from the button collection

Pattern ~
I combined a couple of patterns to start this shirt's journey.  Vogue 8772's front pattern piece was used for the front. OOP Vogue 7700 yoke and back pattern pieces were used for the back piece. The sleeves and cuffs are from my TNT shirt pattern especially since I chose to make them longer without the roll up cuffs.

Cutting and Construction ~
Choosing how to place the fabrics and cut them out are what determines how and if this shirt works. While the inspiration shirt only uses two different types of plaids, I decided I wanted all of the red/white gingham fabrics I had to work in this garment. That meant taking my time to work out placement.

My first thought was to make it exactly like the shirt. So one front and back each of the larger and medium sized gingham. Sleeves from the larger sized gingham and collar, undercollar, front band and cuff from the smaller gingham cut on the bias.

Here are photos from the first arrangements...

Just ignore the junky sewing cave in the background
I was too lazy to stage this shot...

The back as I originally envisioned it...didn't work for me

After this I got discouraged. But isn't that the way it always is in the middle of a challenging project?  Whenever you're stepping out and going your own do start to wonder what the heck? Changing out that back piece and making a couple other changes, got me to the finished shirt. 

BTW, I wasted quite a bit of fabric making this shirt. I cut the sleeves twice...once from the largest gingham and again from the smaller gingham. It wasn't my intent but as I worked with the elements of the shirt, I kept changing things until they worked to fabric waste.

A Few Photos ~

I honestly went back and forth a couple of times on whether I liked this shirt while I was making it. But it is me...definitely me and by the time I was done I knew it would work for me.

This is one of those I had some fabric, I choose some patterns (not worried about whether they were current or not) and made a shirt that I wanted to make. This is my sewing now because this is how I dress daily. A shirt, a pair of jeans and when it's colder a cardigan, sweatshirt or hoodie to go over everything. I'm finally content with my wardrobe. always more later!


  1. Great use of all the gingham fabric and it looks fabulous on you.

  2. I love this! I agree that the smaller print works better on the arms, it looks so great on you!

  3. This is such a gorgeous shirt - I am totally in love with it! A great post, and so interesting to see how much thought it takes to bring it all together so beautifully.

  4. This blouse makes me so happy. I have to admit that I was a bit doubtful with the earlier pics but you were spot on. The use of bias is brilliant.

  5. No shirt could be cuter! I love it!

  6. I was wondering what you were going to do with the button back when we get to the seat. And there they aren't. This is really lovely, and your version is much prettier.

  7. I really like the actual back vs the proposed back. The shirt is so fun!

  8. Love everything about your super cute new shirt!! You mixed and matched the ginghams perfectly and really nailed your inspiration.

  9. So cute! I think the small gingham sleeves are definitely worth the fabric loss... it's better to make something you are happy with that will actually get used. Changing your mind is just part of the creative process. And you look amazing in it! So it's a total win.

  10. Oooo. So many. Wonderful details on your new shirt. Inspiring fabric matching and all from different shops !

  11. So inspiring! I've been looking for an excuse to make a gingham shirt (I adore gingham!). Overall I find your makes very similar to what I like and I appreciate your posts.

  12. Absolutely Awesome!! Well worth the time and effort to make. It looks fabulous on you!

  13. The extra sleeves you cut could become a fun lining for a bag or another small project.

  14. I hope your blog is back for good. Every day I'd look for you and really missed you. Love this gingham blouse - love that back. You are so good at taking different portions of patterns and making it your own. Wish I was that good. Someday, we'll be back to normal. I pray for that daily and it just seems to be getting worse.


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