Idea Log: Big pleated top

Idea Log: Big pleated top

With that back-to-school feeling in the air, I’m full of ideas about what I want to make for fall! As I said the other day, I really am trying not to get ahead of myself, but there’s a shirt in my head that I want to record so maybe it’ll leave me alone for a quick minute — but which I think will be the workhorse of the season for me. It’s weirdly and tangentially inspired by a lot of things: Studio Nicholson‘s way with volume, the fall Zara men’s lookbook, the ghosts of garments past. It’s sleeveless, mandarin-collared, a bit oversized on top and voluminous on bottom, perfect on its own or layered under all sorts of things. And while if it works out, there will be more than one, the first will be in that navy-ivory menswear striped remnant bundle I’ve been mulling for two years now.

My plan is to simply modify Grainline’s Alder shirtdress pattern — shortening it and straightening the hemline, leaving off the collar, using Acher’s big pockets, and trading in the gathers for wide pleats. All the more motivation to finish up my Archer.

p.s. I’m pretty sure those are also my army-green pants for SoB 3

(Fashionary sketch templates from Fringe Supply Co.)


PREVIOUSLY in Idea Log: Side pocket pants

Make Your Own Basics: The button-down shirt

Handmade Wardrobe Basics: The button-down shirt

For a very long time, I’ve been trying to do a blog post — an overwhelmingly large blog post — that’s basically a roundup of patterns for knitting the array of basics that every high-functioning wardrobe depends on. I’ve finally come to the realization that it can’t (and shouldn’t) be done in a single post, and also that if the goal is to encompass the building blocks, well, that takes both knitted and sewn pieces. Many of us are striving to make as much of our wardrobes as possible with our own two hands (whether “as possible” means 5% or 50% or 100%), so my goal here, ultimately, is to compile a nice tidy set of patterns to work from. Here you’ll find nothing fancy or on-trend — just the basics, sure the stand the test of time.

I imagine most of these posts will include a small number of patterns that would fit the particular bill in various ways, but I’m kicking it off with maybe the greatest wardrobe workhorse of all — the button-down shirt — and in this case I’m featuring just one pattern: the Archer Button Up Shirt by Jen Beeman of Grainline Studio. Now, as you may know, Jen and I have collaborated on a pattern and become pals in the process. But long before I knew Jen, I knew how highly regarded this pattern was/is. And if you’re making a garment this necessary and detailed and fitted, you want it to be drafted by an honest-to-goodness professional pattern drafter. So one of these days, when I’m ready to brave sewing my own button-down, it’s Archer I’ll turn to.