Hot! The “Wait, That’s Not Me!” Shirt

The Facts

Fabric: 2 yards navy plaid cotton shirting, from Mood, $7.80
Pattern: Simplicity 7030, $1.99, cuff placket from Shirtmaking
Year: 2001
Notions: 9 16L and 4 14L shirt buttons stolen from old shirts in stash
Time to complete: 9 days
First worn: Tuesday, around town
Wear again? Yes! (Thank goodness!)
Total cost: ~$10

You may have noticed that the model in this week’s photo does not look like the author’s photo below. In his online debut, I give you my better half, Brandon. The financier, co-conspirator, and voice-of-reason behind all of my projects. When this week’s theme was announced, it seemed only fitting that I use the button challenge to create a shirt for him. Especially since I promised him this one about a month ago!

Generally speaking, I actually despise plaid shirts but, suddenly, this fall, I decided Brandon needed one. He was hesitant when I told him this but, after explaining the shirt should always be worn under a sweater, he came around. Yep – all that time listed up there was spent plaid matching, hand basting, sewing and resewing something which will barely see the light of day! (Really, this was practice for future, nicer shirts but, also a way to give him the look I was picturing in a decidedly not-so-lumberjacky plaid.)

Cuff placket

Of course, as I began construction, it occured to me this was a bad idea. I was trying multiple techniques from my new Shirtmaking book, which was fun but also stressful so, add that to the stress of plaid matching – on a fabric that wouldn’t sit straight – and well, let’s just say it was a lesson in patience… and I’m now well-aquainted with my seam ripper! Sewing the challenge’s finishing 13 buttons and buttonholes was actually a relief!

In the end though, I’ve managed to improve the fit of his pattern, fill a gap in his wardrobe, learn new skills, and make a shirt he wants to wear! Success!



Jennifer took up sewing in 2008 as a new hobby after a move. Now, with endless ideas running through her head, she's making an effort to fill hers and her fiance's closets with custom clothing.


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  1. So much better than the pattern cover! That plaid matching is fabulous.

  2. Fantastic job! I may have to check out a book on shirtmaking myself.

    • Thank you, Erin! I highly recommend the book, as well as the companion dvd! The techniques are actually fairly simple and reduce so much of the bulk that can make a homemade shirt look unprofessional. Though I suggest trying them on a solid first ;-)

    • Thank you, Erin!! I highly recommend Coffin’s book, as well as the accompanying dvd! The techniques are actually fairly simple and they reduce the seam bulk that often keeps a homemade shirt from looking professional.

  3. WOW! Great job on the shirt–it’s fantastic and I think he should wear it sans sweater to show off all your handiwork!

  4. Beautiful!!!!! If we had a rating system, I’d give you 5 stars out of 5 stars!

  5. It’s a great shirt! I think you did very well in matching the plaid, and he looks very happy in it – well done!

  6. That shirt is great, and the plaids match. Yay! Those pesky plaids can be a pain. You did a great job!

  7. that is definitely *not* a “sad etsy boyfriend.” that is a happy dude in a great-looking shirt. good job!

    • Thanks!! Haha, I had no idea that “sad etsy boyfriends” were a thing! I’ve now Googled it and man am I glad he smiled for his pictures :-). He was definately happy to finally have his shirt.

  8. Aw! He’s so handsome! You did an AMAZING job… I hereby nominate you for Sainthood with all that plaid matching–you must have an extra reserve of patience!

  9. I have that same pattern for the hubs! I made him a vest for part of a Halloween costume last year. For some reason he doesn’t want me to make other clothes for him – I think he’s afraid he won’t like it and hurt my feelings.

    Yours turned out so awesome! I think I’m going to sneak and try making the shirt just to practice cuffs and collars.

    • Thanks!! It’s a great pattern. I’m sure your husband wouldn’t object to a surprise shirt! If you haven’t done a shirt before (or like me, never like how they turn out), I recommend checking the ‘Shirtmaking’ dvd out from the library to get an even better looking collar and cuffs. Have fun practicing :-)

  10. I keep telling myself that I’m going to make something for my longsuffering husband (stepping on pins! being dragged into fabric stores! not being able to get to his things because of a mound of fabric!), but have been scared of button-up shirts because of the button placket and cuffs and collar. Okay, everything. But yours looks excellent! Great job with the plaid matching, and I might just be inspired now!

    • Thanks, Cindy!! I know exactly what you mean! Poor Brandon has had to look at more than his fair share of fabric and notions and very little have been for his items. I was concerned about those areas of a shirt too but they get easier with practice. This is the third shirt I’ve made him but the first that I actually think is public worthy. I’m sure you’ll do fine! :-)

  11. great job, very professional shirt