Hello again and I hope you are all enjoying the fall season!

This month I completed a huge first from my list of things I wanted to attempt sewing… *drum-roll please* a tailored menswear button-up shirt! It ended up being a huge success and I really enjoyed the (somewhat stressful) process of pattern matching and endless top stitching! Go figure.

I purchased this lovely plaid flannel from Michael Levine’s ages ago and at the time thought that 2yds would be plenty for a men’s flannel shirt. BOY, WAS I LUCKY. If you’ve never attempted pattern matching before, you might not realize how much extra fabric it takes to make sure you’re cutting everything just how you want it. It wasn’t until after I cut out the front & back pieces (thank GOODNESS I did this on the fold so they ended up symmetrical!) that I realized I need to put extra thought into my cutting if I wanted certain pieces on the bias. I chose to cut the yoke, plackets, cuffs, and pockets all diagonally and by some miracle, I barely made it in 2 yards. Take advice from me and buy at least a 1/2yd to 1yd extra. Cutting mistakes are all too easy and heartbreaking if you run out of your precious fabric!
Since this was my first attempt at menswear, I decided to purchase a ready-made pattern to test out. I used Simplicity #1544 and followed view D, without the shoulder tabs. The correct neck size left me with a shirt that was much too large in the sleeves and body, so I took both in by several inches. Overall I thought the pattern was very easy to follow and created a lovely, crisp end product! I’d highly recommend this pattern to anyone attempting their first button-up shirt as well.Now after all this rambling, I’ll move on to the real reason for this post. One of my most dreaded tasks has always been attempting to get a clean button-hole with my machine. Sure, I could hand-bind each one, but on a shirt with TWELVE buttons, who’s got time for that!? Well I think I’ve finally mastered the buttonhole attachment for my machine and I wanted to share a few tips and tricks I learned to help you with yours.I’ve created a little video showing how I sewed one on my flannel shirt so you can follow along. Hopefully this helps! If you are attempting the same and have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments below.

As always, thanks for reading and happy sewing!
-Maggie Jean