Rare Unselfish Sewing: Walden Patterns by Colette Negroni shirt

Sorry, there was a delay in getting this posted as I forgot my Flickr details so couldn’t get to the pictures.   All sorted now and I’ve written them done, so shouldn’t forget again.


Well, after a year of being asked to make something for my husband, I have finally relented. I present to you my husband, Tobi, in his Negroni shirt by Walden from Colette patterns. Ta Da!

This has been my most complex make so far and I’m really pleased with the result. Tobi decided that he wanted a long-sleeved shirt as he likes to be able to roll the sleeves up. This meant I had to tackle techniques I’d not done before- sleeve plackets and cuffs. I was really nervous about the sleeve plackets but actually they stitched up like a dream. The Colette instructions are really clear. To get nice sharp edges on the folds and point I used a piece of thin card to press the fabric over. This worked a treat. The cuffs aren’t perfect as the sleeve seam line poked out at the edge of the cuff but it’s not too noticeable.
Another tricky area was easing in the collar into the neckline seam but I used a pin easing technique that I spotted on the Fehr Trade blog  and took my time with the stitching making sure the yoke on the underside was smooth as I went along. This resulted in my best collar so far with absolutely zero puckers or pleats.

I made a slight boo boo with attaching the sleeves as I was a bit confused by the instructions. The sleeves and side seams of the Negroni are stitched with a flat-felled seam for strength and neatness. The instructions for attaching the sleeve have you press the sleeve head seam under by ¼” and then instruct you to match the edges of the sleeve head to the armscye and stitch a ¾” seam allowance. I slightly misinterpreted the instructions and matched the raw edges instead of the raw edge of the armscye to the folded edge of the sleeve head. This meant that I ended up with approximately a 1/8” flat felled seam for attaching the sleeve. It was very fiddly but I did it and it didn’t look awful so I chose not to unpick. Peter Lappin of Male Pattern Boldness has an amazing Negroni sew-along series which made me realise my mistake.
Fit-wise, my husband has a classic masculine shape- he’s like an upside-down triangle. I cut the large size for the top of the shirt and graded to a medium at the waist. The sleeves are slightly long, although I checked the finished garment measurements before I made and the length of the sleeve seemed perfect from these) and a little too full so for the next one (which will probably be completed in another years time) I will take some of the length off and may use the medium sleeve pattern and armscye. Tobi loves the fit as he usually has to buy large shirts which swamp him at the waist and make him look a lot bigger than he actually is. Maybe I should have intentionally ballsed it up for him so he doesn’t ask me to make him stuff anymore and I can stick to my selfish sewing.

Attaching the inner back yoke- is it a shirt or a draught excluder?

Pattern matching accross back, yoke and collar
Have any of you made a men’s shirt?   I really enjoyed this make and had one of those “Did I really make that?” moments when it was finally finished.   Tobi’s had loads of compliments on it from colleagues and I know he wants me to make more.


3 thoughts on “Rare Unselfish Sewing: Walden Patterns by Colette Negroni shirt

  1. I am currently sewing up a negroni Muslim and did the exact same thing when attaching the sleeves: matched the raw edges. I don’t think the instructions were very clear, which is odd because I felt the rest of the instructions were super detailed/borderline obvious. The shirt looks fabulous.

  2. Pingback: My Knight in Adjustable Shining Armour | Sewcial Warrior

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