I think this is my 7th time of making this pattern. Quite a record for me. This is my third plaid version. I have also made versions in denim, linen and cotton shirting and voile. BUT this version is an new and (mainly) improved version.
Why start messing around with a pattern on the 7th time of making you ask? Well, it started when I was featured in one of the “Same Pattern, Different Bodies” posts, about the Archer Shirt, on the Curvy Sewing Collective. (If you read through the comments section on that post, you will see that I did get rather irritated. Oh dear!) Anyway, moving on, one of the commentators said that she felt that all the shirts that were featured basically needed an FBA. I have never felt like I needed to do an FBA on the Archer shirt, but here’s the thing, when you sew a shirt in plaid then the checks can be very telling when it comes to the fit. Here are the first two versions of this shirt, sewn in plaid, without the FBA:
I don’t think the checks look too bad over the bust, but I decided that maybe I could do with just a small 0.5 inch FBA. So that is what I did, using the method described by Paprika Patterns (how to do a FBA on a dartless shirt). I eliminated the dart, and redrafted the side seam as I decided I did not want a bust dart interfering with any futher plaid versions of this pattern I might make.
Yes, I think the checks now lie just that tiny bit more horizontal. So FBA successfully completed.
Other changes I also made:
- I finally got round to adding 0.25 inches to the armholes, sleeves and side seams to facilitate flat fell finishing all those seams.
- I don’t mind using the continous lapped placket method for some shirts – in fact for light weight fabrics I probably prefer that method – but for more weightier fabrics I think a tower placket is more appropriate. So that’s what I did on this shirt, using this tutorial from Off The Cuff – excellent tutorial and surprisingly easy to do.
Now let’s talk about what is not so good: the comically large cuffs. Readers, I am completely baffled as to why the cuffs are as large as they are. I didn’t add anything to the cuff seam allowances, I did the pleats as usual, and the only thing I can think of is that either the plackets have somehow made them bigger, or that this fabric has just somehow grown?! I am stumped. Another version will probably have to be made to investigate. Sigh.
This is my first time using pearl snaps, and I basically followed exactly what VeryKerryBerry says to do in this tutorial, including buying the pliers and a set of Prym jersey snaps so that I would have the plastic attachments. Conclusion: using the Prym snaps gave the best results (rather than the generic snaps), and using the pliers with the plastic attachments gave pretty much fool proof results.
I love how cosy this version of this shirt is, and let’s face it, spring, at least in this corner of the world, is still a way off. If I can resolve the cuff issue this will continue to be a firm favourite.
Hello Readers, hope you are all well. I have finally got round to making an Archer shirt! I have read sooooo many great reviews about this shirt that I just had to see what all the hype was about. Let me tell you, it does not disappoint.
I made my Archer in a soft flannel (which from these pictures would appear to wrinkle easily!) This shirt is designed to be loosely fitting, and it is. I like the relaxed fit, but next time round I think I would perhaps narrow the sleeves and cuffs down. I did take the precaution of shortening the sleeves by 3.5 inches before cutting the fabric. I used a tip from Beth (having admired her plaid shirt) and used a softer fusible interfacing to give a softer feel to the shirt.
I used the same plaid matching techniques as described in this post, again cutting the yoke on the bias. I think I have conquered my fear of matching plaids 🙂 I also chose to flat fell seam all my seam allowances. Speaking of which, I somehow managed to sew BOTH my shirt sleeves on inside out, AND flat fell seam them (on the outside) before I realised and unpicking them (after trimming seam allowances) was hideous, but I managed and somehow got them back on the right way and flat fell seamed…again.
I would not say this is a beginners project. It does require a lot of very precise sewing. BUT, I have to say that the sewalong accompanying this shirt on the Grainline blog is superb. Jen’s instructions are extremely clear and so are her photographs/ videos. I have previously used the Craftsy Classic Tailored Shirt tutorials to learn about shirt making, and I do still highly recommend them. But I still learned some new tricks using the Archer sewalong which I will carry forward into my future shirt making.
The Archer Button Up is a loosely fitting button up shirt with long sleeves. View A has angled cuffs and a back pleat at yoke. View B has straight cuffs and a gathered lower back detail.
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Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Were the instructions easy to follow?
I didn’t use the downloaded instructions at all. I just used the Archer sewalong (which is excellent!) and some of my own shirt making knowledge.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I love the overall fit. It is loose and relaxed. I love the proportions of the collar. I love the fact this is such a versatile pattern (haven’t we already seen so many amazing different versions?!) I think I need to narrow the sleeves for next time.
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
Aside from shortening the sleeves by 3.5 inches and cutting the yoke on the bias, none.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
YES and YES.
If you are looking for a casual, feminine shirt with some great features then try this pattern.
Until later my friends, have a great week.