Yeah - I finally managed to make a shirt I'm happy with.
I have made only a few shirts. I've never used a pattern - each one has been a rub off of a commercial shirt. I have had a few problems with the fit and styling. One of the biggest problems was making the collar and cuffs firm enough.
So this was the shirt I made for John for his birthday. I still think there are a couple of issues, but its a big improvement on the last one.
A couple of years ago I traced a shirt that fitted him well and used it to make my pattern. It was not too bad, but the collar was a bit tight and the length a little bit short. I fixed these issues for the next version, but I still hadn't sorted out the floppy collar. which was not aided by the soft fabric.
This time I decided to sort out the collar and cuffs and I also included a separate button placket, where the previous versions had a simple folded over CF edge.
I did quite a bit of reading about collar construction techniques and how it should be interfaced. I used a combination of techniques, but I do find the Grainline Archer sewalong really helpful generally for sewing shirts. However I didn't use this technique this time. I made the collar and pressed it into shape, attached the stand and then added the collar to the stand.
To ensure the correct firmness and crisp finish I actually used a double layer of interfacing. I used a medium firm iron on and this seemed to work really well.
The seams were faux flat felled - next time I would like to try doing a proper flat felled seam. The hem was a rolled hem, but done without a rolled hem foot.
My daughter chose the buttons and I initially though they were a little bit too big. I do think they work though, but next time I'd go a bit smaller.
I know I've done a good job when John asks me if I'd made it! He was impressed with the finish and initially though it was a RTW shirt. NO CHANCE!