The “Chambray – it’s so hot right now!” Shirt | Sarah Gabbart
Pattern: Amy Butler Liverpool shirt ($15.95)
Year: c. 2009
Notions: Vintage buttons – $1
Time to complete: 6 hours
First worn: January 2011
Wear again? Absolutely!
Total Cost: ~$35
Chambray. It's so hot right now. Chambray. Like the iPhone before it, I resisted the trend for a great number of weeks until waking up one day jonesing for a fix. A fix of soft blue cotton. I had to have it – NOW!
Thankfully, the ladies and I had an assignment that fit perfectly with my misson. After perusing some of my favorite shops, J.Crew had a chambray shirt that would be a perfect source of inspiration!
After the fun part of "window shopping" (can you window shop online? Would it be monitor shopping?!) began the grueling process of narrowing down which pattern I wanted to use for this project. I landed on the Liverpool shirt from Amy Butler because it has three things I was looking for:
- Classic button down style
- Stand up collar
- Long hip length (good for tucking in or leaving out!)
I can tell you folks that I was ready to kiss Amy Butler on the face after last week's vintage instruction meltdown. She is just so dang clear on what needs to be done! I will definitely be doing this pattern again – next time as a shirtdress!
Now there's the problem of getting some good chambray in shirting weight. With no source locally, Fabric.com has once again come to my rescue with exactly what I was looking for at a pretty good price. *Helpful tip: when working with chambray, iron the heck out of it before cutting – it tends to bunch together and will stretch out as you press pieces later, making them longer than they should be.
Now to the details – I love little unexpected pops of personality in simple garments, which is why I decided to pimp this shirt out with some flowers. On the inside collar stand, the bottom of the collar and the inside of the cuffs with Regent Street Lawn (a total imitation of Liberty of London's classic Tana Lawn fabric – they're not hiding it either, Liberty is on Regent Street!)
The vintage buttons were a find from a bin at work for $1 (SCORE!), and the added details of floral fabric on the collar and cuffs were scraps from my fabric stash (the cuffs are rolled up in all these photos to show off the floral-ness, but are plain chambray on the other side).
Construction was decently easy and I had no Sarah-related mishaps with the directions – I'm considering this a win after two projects full of my self-inflicted issues! Because this pattern has a bunch of pieces and steps (like topstitching), it took about 6 hours from cutting to completion. This includes sewing on the buttons by hand, which is my least favorite part of anything for some reason. It's like the washing dishes of sewing to me. I HATE doing it. Yet I keep picking things with like 50 buttons on them – go figure!
After trying this bad boy on, I can tell you that I will be living in it when the weather gets warm again outside (it's threatening to snow here this week – can you believe it?!)! Chambray shirt: I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
Do you have any tried and true wardrobe pieces that you can't live without? Tell us in the comments!