The Fairfield Button-down Shirt
The Fairfield shirt has been on my selfless-sewing radar for a few years now and this Christmas presented itself as the perfect opportunity for bringing it to life. This loving boyfriend of mine, delightfully received a plaid flannel shirt that fits him to a T. Thread Theory has an array of lovely men's patterns with extensive yet straightforward instructions and their patterns even come with a Thread Theory label to be sewed in once the garment is complete. A classic style with a modern fit, the Fairfield pulled through along with Robert Kaufman's Mammoth double-sided flannels which are of superb quality and come at a very reasonable price.
Just like when I first met my sweetie, the moment I laid eyes on this particular handsome flannel I knew it was the right one. The two Sundays I spent tracing the pattern, cutting out the pattern and being sure to match my plaids, scrutinizing the fit by comparing the pieces to his existing shirts, and sewing it all together using a few new-to-me processes, really payed off and I couldn't be more satisfied with how it turned out. Both my boyfriend and I are ecstatic. This is his first tailored shirt and although I say I will make him shirts more often now that I have mastered this pattern, I got on to him when he tossed it in the dirty clothes hamper after only two days of wearing it. I told him he is required to wear it at least three times before he is allowed to wash it. Gotta preserve that #&%!
I ran into one issue with the pattern which was the collar and stand were both way too small to fit the size medium I had traced so I actually had to go back and trace an XXL collar size and collar stand for it to fit, weird, I know. I sent Thread Theory an email about this and they told me that their patternmaker drafted it this way to encourage the shirt to curve around the clavicle and sit closely against the neck rather than flap open during wearing and that the collar stand should ease into the neck opening. Also, they said they have tested it many times to make sure of this and they have had success. I'm still scratching my head though but, I wouldn't let this deter you from giving the pattern a try just know that there will be some substantial easing to be had OR you can do what I did and just trace whatever larger size you need. The only alterations to the pattern that I made were that I shortened the body and sleeves 1.5 inches from the shorten/lengthen line on the pattern because my guy is shorter than average and graded the sleeve from a medium at the shoulder to a small at the wrist because he has broad shoulders and I didn't want too much fullness at the cuff which, I think, gives it a more tailored look.