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I do LOVE a tailored shirt and pants on a boy! When I was asked to sew up something for a fall blog using anything from the Raspberry Creek Fabric collection that didn’t always get a lot of love, my eye was immediately drawn to the linen chambray collection, and the twill!
When I spotted the yellow twill and blue linen chambray fabrics in the RCF collection, I knew they’d make the perfect outfit for him! For this look, I used the Buttoned-up Button-down shirt, and the Art Museum trousers, both from Oliver+S. I discovered this company when I first started sewing for my children, and quickly became hooked! While I don’t sew O+S nearly as often anymore, they are hard to beat for staples in boys’ wardrobes!
I’d made both of these before, but it had been a while! I didn’t make too many changes from the original pattern, though I did omit the welt pockets on the trousers, opting for patch pockets instead. I also skipped the second set of cuff buttons (on the placket) and the buttons on the collar. Partly because he’s never going to button the collar, and partly because my sewing machine has declared war on sewing programmable buttonholes, and so right now I have to measure and mark each one and.it.is.the.worst. I know, I know, first world problems hey… but I have no time right now to get it fixed, so manual buttonholes it is for the foreseeable future 😞
Often, I like to do contrast top-stitching on woven pants and shirts, however after searching for some ready-to-wear samples, I opted for colors closer to the fabric color. This made it quicker to sew too, since I wasn’t having to switch colors in my machine all the time.
Each of these fabrics was just so lovely to sew and look at! I particularly love the chambray – the drape is just gorgeous and with a few washes, it’ll soften up really nicely too (I didn’t actually prewash the linen since 1) it’s easier to sew fabric that hasn’t been prewashed, and 2) I knew the shirt would be a little oversized so I wasn’t concerned about shrinking).
One thing to keep in mind with the linen though, is it does stretch a little as you sew it – if you have areas that need to hold their shape, then it’s important to stay stitch. I wish I had thought to do this on the waistband lining, as I found it tricky to keep it aligned with the rest of the waistband during the final round of top stitching.
If you’ve not sewn with wovens before, I highly recommend giving them a try! I like to use sharp Microtex needles, sharp pins, Gutermann polyester thread, an edge stitching foot, and I also like to keep a can of quilt basting spray handy – this is helpful for putting patch pockets in the right place before you sew them!
Happy sewing! (Oh, and be sure to check out the Raspberry Creek Blog for a slightly different version of this blog post!)