For the last five-ish years or so my husband has only worn western, rockabilly style dress shirts. On casual days he wears black tees and rolled up jeans. He's a simple guy. Unfortunately these shirts are pretty hard to find and they're usually pretty expensive. Sometimes $80 and up for the nice embroidered ones. This may not seem like a lot but we're pretty cheap around here, haha! So, for about five years I've been saying that I needed to learn how to make these. Up until now I haven't felt like my sewing skills were up to snuff but I thought that this would make an excellent 30th birthday present and boy was I right. He was giddy about this shirt and promptly "ordered" a dozen more just like it, haha! It made the work so very worth it. He wore it to work this morning and I was able to snap these few pics before he ran out the door. It's a bit wrinkly from being in the gift box but he was happy and didn't care.
I was terrified that it wouldn't fit or be super wonky when he put it on but, hallelujah, it fits perfectly! And to be honest, it fits nicer than his store bought ones. I know I'm biased but gosh, he looks so handsome in it! Of course it has "issues" being handmade. The slash pockets aren't exactly the same and don't line up exactly and the hem wants to roll but he was totally cool with all of its flaws and said those things made it better. (He's so sweet) I don't even want to think about the hours that went into this but it was a HUGE learning experience and I'm totally confident that the next one will go together in about a quarter of the time. Most of the time suckage was just that I had no idea how these shirts were constructed and since there are no modern patterns that are exactly like this I had to make some of it up as I went. I used McCalls 4530 as the main pattern and did a lot of research and comparing to his other shirts to make a bunch of little changes. The biggest of the changes was adding the slash pockets. There are ZERO instructions for how to make these so I used a tutorial for making a welted pocket and just kind of muddled my way through. I'm over the moon happy with how they turned out and now have a pretty good method for making them. The hand sewn arrow tacks ended up larger than I wanted just to cover up some mistakes but I like the way they look. I have to say though that my favorite part (other than putting the last few stitches in) was the embroidery. It was super fun and I've got big plans for future shirts! He's the upright bass player in a rockabilly band so I'm thinking he needs some "show" shirts, this is going to be fun!
Oh, and I made this shirt for under $20 pattern and all! Woot! I'll try to get some more detailed pictures in the next few days to share. Happy 30th to my very best friend and the most amazing husband a girl could ask for!