10 White Shirts

Barbara of  sewing on the edge is planning to sew 10 white shirts for herself. And she has 10 good reasons for it. I quote:

Ten reasons to sew ten white shirts:

1. Who ever looked a a white shirt in her closet and said “damn I don’t have anything to wear with this”?

2. These are true wearable muslins. A white shirt allows a sewer to focus on technique and fit – and what you learn on these shirts/blouses can be transferred to other fabric.

3. In what other garment can you make many things from the exact same fabric? Multiple white shirts are cost effective, yardage, and notions saving.

4. You can wear a white shirt year round. Under a vest or cardigan in winter; as a sun cover suit in summer.

5. They don’t really ever go out of style – unless the details are really crazy – but I would argue the white shirtedness extends shelf life.

6. They use classic fabrics, some of which you don’t sew with any more. Pique, voile, swiss dot, broadcloth, oxford cloth, pima cotton, kona cotton. There is a bit of retro sewing process going on here,

7. The majority of white shirts are cotton. Easy to press and to sew. Plus you get that great satisfying steam coming off of the cotton – a cultural experience. Our culture.

8. It is easy to add details to a TNT – get a great fitting body and cuffs, sleeves, collars can be interchanged – in fact a lot of the patterns provide this in the envelope.

9. These are the ultimate snappy garment. Wear a white shirt when you are tired, crabby, or feeling sort of half-assed and it will make your appearance at least, looked perked up. There is occasional need in my life for this.

10. No one ever regrets the time spent on sewing a white shirt.

These reasons are all true for me. On top of that I do not have a single selfmade white shirt in my closet – shame on me! I own 3 white shirts, 2 of which are slightly too small for me (and have been so from day one). Furthermore, one of those has taken on a sickly pink-greyish tinge after the last washing and the third shirt was an emergency purchase while on a business trip. It acutally fits me, a rarity with RTW stuff, but the fabric is a horrible stretchy poly-gabardine which is clinging to the body – uck!

But I love to wear white shirs, I love the neat and nice look and I always feel well dressed wearing them. Barbara invites us for a Sew-Along and I’ve decided to join. I am going to make 5 white shirts. I have quite a few shirt/blouse patterns that have to be adjusted or made for the first time, so this is the ideal opportunity.

Here’s the plan:

1.McCall’s M6035

New pattern – I am planning to use this as my basic shirt pattern in the future

2. Wearing History “Smooth Sailing” blouse:

I already made it once, the fit has to be optimized (larger sleeves) then it could become a good basic pattern for a 40ies blouse.,

3. Simplicity2501

Already made it once, fit has to be optimized (use C-cup instead of D-cup pattern). I want to make view D without the waistband

4. NewLook 6678 (oop)

New pattern, I am planning a mixture of views C and D.

5. B4985

New pattern. I want to make the red polka-dot view with slightly longer sleeves.

Fabricwise I am going to raid my stash. I am confident that I will find at least 5 white shirtings. I am somehow tempted to sew 5 different patterns from the same fabric, but I would have to purchase something and I want to avoid that at the moment – the stash has to shrink considerably first.


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