Now that I’ve been sewing for almost two years, I finally feel comfortable enough to try a button down shirt and jumped on the Archer bandwagon–almost two years after it came out. The Archer is designed as a casual shirt, described as a “loosely fitting button up shirt.” Why do some people say button down and others say button up? Somebody should do a study on that…
Since this is my first real attempt at a button-down shirt, I decided to make a muslin to test the fit, and hone my techniques. I’ve previously made a flannel button-down, but this is a much more precise make. The fabric I used here is a little stiff.It was a thrifted sheet, intended to be used on a test make. For my next version, I’m using a lightweight cotton with more drape. I think this will help with some of the minor fit issues and will look more natural.
This fabric isn’t the most versatile for a shirt. With jeans, it has an 80’s denim-on-denim vibe, at least to me. It does look better in these pictures than I expected, though. To tone it down a little, I’ve mostly been wearing it under a sweater or with my puffy vest (that I’ve had since before college! I’m trying to work on a quality over quantity ethos when it comes to clothes).
There are definitely things that I need to improve for my next version, but I’m pretty proud of this shirt. I mean, check out that collar. That is one area where my previous practice on the flannel shirt came in handy. A lot of people don’t seem to like the instructions for the collar that come with the pattern, but I found them very easy to follow and execute.
- Improve the precision of my topstitching
- Make sure my back pleat is right-side-out (doh!)
- Make the cuffs slightly larger so it is easier to fit my hand through
- Use French seams for all of the seams. This will allow me to roll up my sleeves, plus it just looks pretty on the inside.