Thread Theory

Welcome to the new era of menswear sewing. Go ahead and create something exceptional!


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Dintex and Merino – Fabrics and your Projects

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Do you subscribe to our email newsletter?  If so, you will have been notified about the launch of our Fall Fabric Collection last Monday!  We have Dintex (waterproof, windproof and breathable fabric) and superfine Merino fabrics back in stock…and have some bold new colors!

I’ve compiled some inspiration today from my own sewing projects and from some of the amazing projects that have been shared on Instagram and blogs since we launched our Dintex fabric last year.  But first, have a quick look at the new colors!

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You will now find this classic red Dintex in our shop along with a very sporty Green Apple:

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I could imagine both these colors sewn into the bright high-tech ski jackets hanging at my local ski & board shop!  Or, perhaps, they could be paired with a less sporty pattern (a glamorous full skirted trench coat perhaps) and a floral umbrella for an entirely different look.

Since a few of you have been enquiring about the mesh ‘wrong side’ of this fabric, I took a close up shot of the mesh backing so you can see that it doesn’t need to be lined.  The mesh is soft and hard wearing and is similar to what you would see on the inside of high tech sportwear (especially outer ‘shells’)…

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If you wanted to line your Dintex garment though, the possibilities are only limited by the style that you are trying to achieve!  It would pair nicely with microfleece as a warm and sporty outer layer or you could dress it up with acetate lining or tartan flannel.

Aside from these two new colors we have a large range of more sedate choices as well as some gorgeous stormy blues and tropical teals!

The superfine 100% merino wool that you can also find in our Fall Fabric collection is the perfect base layer to wear beneath a Dintex rain jacket.  It is incredibly versatile – it can be used for classic long johns (by lengthening the Comox Trunks pattern) or it can be sewn in to an elegant dress!  We have restocked it in Moroccan blue and charcoal grey but I couldn’t resist adding this third color to the collection – a GORGEOUS Nova Red that features just a hint of orange:

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Isn’t that beautifully rich?  The fabric gleams and it is incredibly soft against the skin.

Now that you’ve seen the new color choices, imagine them paired with these projects that you and I have sewn throughout the last year:

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This superfine merino top in Moroccan blue was sewn by me (for myself) but is modelled here by my sister’s beautiful friend, Sylvia.  We were headed for a beach walk so I couldn’t pass up the perfect opportunity to dress Sylvia up and allow my talented photographer sister to take some shots!

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This top was sewn using a BurdaStyle pattern from the magazine but the same pattern can also be found online as a PDF.  I love this rendition of the top because I can wear it as a warm layer while hiking or skiing or I can add a statement necklace and a skirt to dress up (sometimes on the same day!)!  I’ve washed, tumble dried and worn this steadily for a full year now with no signs of wear.  I anticipate that this merino shirt will be in my closet for many years to come.

You might remember one of my other sewing projects from last winter – Matt’s Dintex jacket:

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You can read all about this on the blog.  Matt wore this jacket as a shell over a down mid-layer throughout the last snowy winter.  We’ve machine washed and then hung to dry this jacket mid winter because Matt can often be found doing grubby things like carting fire wood or bush-wacking so the front got a bit muddy.  After washing it we sprayed it with a water repellent finish to freshen up the DWR that the fabric manufacturer applied.  He continued to wear the jacket throughout the spring with a sweater underneath and this summer has been wearing it over a t-shirt since it is breathable and thus comfortable in hot weather.  I really need to make myself a similar jacket since I am quite jealous of how it allows him to be ready for anything!

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And now, the best part…your projects!

Here are two adorable Dintex jackets made by Nicole of The Spool Sewing Studio (@thespoolsewingstudio) for herself and her daughter:

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Nicole always does a great job of using up her fabric scraps by sewing a coordinating outfit for her daughter…so cute and no waste!  Her jacket is the Kelly Anorak by Cloest Case Patterns and her daughter’s is the Oliver and S School Days Jacket.

And another gorgeous Kelly Anorak, this time in Navy Dintex, sewn by @newribina and shared on Instagram:17818549_1248444198610671_3114182173880483840_n

She used the hardware kit that we stock in our shop!  I love how she used the reflective zipper (that we include for pockets or ‘pit zips’) as a chest pocket.  The drawstring at the waist is also reflective so the wearer of this beautiful jacket is safe walking or riding at night.

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Jen (@_jennicholson_) sewed this Hemingway Windcheater for her partner.  The charcoal grey Dintex that she chose pairs very nicely with the gunmetal snaps.

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Lastly, a third Kelly Anorak, this time sewn by Fiona of the blog Stitch and Finish.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Fiona has written some very helpful details about working with Dintex, seam tape (for waterproofing seams) and about a few modifications she made to tailor her jacket to cycling.  Her end result looks SO pro!

I’ve sorted our new Fall fabrics into their own section in our shop so you can see them all at once.  I thought that might make it easier to pair your outerlayer Dintex with a coordinating merino base layer.

I would really love to share some photos of the projects you guys have made with our merino wool over the last year but it isn’t nearly as easy to search as #dintex is!  I know I have seen some great ones but I can’t seem to find them now.  Can you point me in the right direction (to your blog or Instagram posts)?


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Summer 2017 Fabrics (plus re-stocked best sellers!)

Have you checked our fabric selection lately?  It’s grown quite a bit!  I’ve added an earthy new summer collection and some season-less staple fabrics.  I’ve also restocked three all time bestseller fabrics since many of you let me know that you had missed out when they were last in our store.

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Remember this gorgeous saturated Hemp and Organic Cotton Cotton knit in Deep Teal?  It was part of our Spring 2017 capsule collection and sold out within a couple of days.  I made my Dad a Strathcona T-shirt featuring the Brown colorway and I am currently making myself a teal Weekender Breton Top (sorry, I just had to use a couple meters for myself!  Don’t worry, I stocked plenty extra for you to use too.).  Since I love this fabric so much I’ve also added a third color to our collection, but more on that in a moment!

Also freshly restocked are two Hemp and Organic Cotton shirtings from our Summer 2016 collection!

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This was the fabric used for our Fairfield Button-up sample:

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I re-purchased both the striped and solid blue since this was the color that everyone loved most!

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And now let’s have a look at our new Summer 2017 fabrics:  They feature sustainable fibres and earthy colors inspired by the evergreen forest and wind-whipped lake that Matt and I enjoy each summer at our favourite camping spot.

Let’s begin with the deep blue of the lake…I’ve been dying to show you this gorgeous 100% linen in navy!

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It is 5.9 oz/sq yard making it a great medium weight with enough heft and opacity to create a perfect menswear button-up or a gorgeous tunic.

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If you guys love this linen as much as I do I hope to increase our color range since I really enjoy carrying such a sustainable fibre in our shop.  Some of the other intriguing colors available include natural, olive, red, and plum.

And now, the pebble grey of the gravel beaches:

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One of our fabric suppliers has recently added a new line of 100% cotton jerseys which I am over the moon about…I have looked for heathered 100% cotton jerseys for some time now since this is Matt’s favorite sort of t-shirt fabric.  There is no spandex so it can be dried at high heat without worry of degrading.  I’ve added this beautiful heathered grey to our summer collection and look forward to adding a really nice heathered blue as well as a selection of matching ribbing in the future.

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Next up, we have a new color option (reminiscent of salal bushes and ferns) for our hemp and organic cotton trouser canvas:

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This canteen green looks a tad more saturated in photos than it does in indoor light so I think it would be perfect treated as a neutral and sewn into Jedediah Pants to pair with brightly colored t-shirts (or perhaps a more sedate heather grey t-shirt from the 100% cotton jersey!).

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I wish you could feel this canvas in person but I think the photo above should give you an idea of how gorgeous it is: It is tightly woven with a very slight nubbly texture (due to the hemp).  It will make for excellent hard wearing trousers.

While we are looking at hemp fabrics, here is the new third color option for our Hemp and Organic Cotton Jersey – it is Stone Grey.

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This elegant warm grey would look very smart as a t-shirt paired with extra deep indigo denim.

If you like the idea of hemp and organic cotton blends but prefer a bit more stretch, I’ve added two fabrics featuring a new blend of fibres to the shop: 53% Hemp, 44% Organic Cotton and 3% Spandex! It features a finer texture and more elasticity than the version without any spandex but it does not drape or stretch quite as much as the Bamboo, Organic Cotton and Spandex blend that we also have in our collection.  With the Hemp/Cotton blend on one end of the spectrum (lots of texture, loosely knit, not stretchy) and the Bamboo/Cotton/Spandex blend on the other (smooth, tightly knit, very stretchy), these two new fabrics fall right in the middle.

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This olive has always been my favorite color.  I think it would make a beautiful Camas Blouse with richly embroidered yokes.

This fabric also comes in the same stone grey color as the Hemp/Cotton blend without spandex.  Compare this photo below to the stone grey fabric above and you can see what I mean about the finer texture of the Hemp/Cotton featuring spandex:

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So there you have it, the earthy summer collection!  But there are still more fabrics to show you since I have added a few new color options to the staple fabrics that we stock in our shop (and restock each time they sell out, unlike our seasonal collections):

As I always say, the Bamboo, Organic Cotton and Spandex jersey that we have had in our shop for a number of is hands down my favorite fabric.  We currently carry it in burgundy, charcoal, forest green, almond, olive, navy and white stripe, and navy and grey stripe.  I thought it was time to add some true basics since it is the perfect choice for everything from t-shirts to leggings:

We now have black (a true pure black that is darker than it appears in this photo):

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And classic navy:

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These two will certainly be my only choice for leggings from now on!

And, to finish on a very colorful note, I’ve added two new paisely acetate linings based on a lovely customer’s request!  Here we have a stunning purple:

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And a very elegant navy:

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Both these linings would make a gorgeous addition to the inside of a Goldstream Peacoat or the back of a Belvedere Waistcoat!

As always, I love receiving requests!  If you are looking for a particular fabric or would like to see one of our fabrics in a different colour, please let me know by commenting or emailing me at info@threadtheory.ca

Have a look at our new fabrics in detail >

 


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Sell us your pattern stash! Plus it’s now possible to write reviews.

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I was just sent a fresh selection of vintage boy’s and men’s sewing patterns all the way from Oklahoma!  They are now available in our shop for you to peruse.

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You might remember when I asked you to sell me your vintage menswear patterns last winter.  Since then, Cyndi, from Oklahoma, has been gathering together each gem that she finds at her local thrift shops.  She packaged them up for me and I paid for them to be shipped to our studio.  Cyndi opted to trade her vintage patterns for a few Thread Theory tissue patterns she has had on her wishlist for a while.  We are also happy to pay you for your sewing patterns!

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If you love to shop at thrift stores or if you have menswear sewing patterns languishing in a storage box somewhere, please email me so we can work out a similar deal!  I’m really enjoying sorting through these old patterns and it is heartening to think that these patterns will avoid the trash bin and instead continue their life as useful templates for your unique menswear projects!

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Head to our shop to check out the selection of $3 vintage patterns.  While you are at it, you might notice that we have a new feature on our website – you can now review our patterns, fabrics and tools!

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The first 10 people to leave a review on our website will receive 10% off their next order.  Thanks for sharing your opinions, projects and plans!

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Check out our vintage pattern selection >


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New patterns! Swim trunks, raglan tee and more

We have 15 new menswear sewing patterns available in our shop and I am VERY excited to introduce them to you!  As you probably already know, I keep a long list of every pattern suggestion that is sent to me in hopes that one day I will be able to provide all of the designs you long for.

Aside from a button-up shirt, a raglan t-shirt has always been the most requested pattern over the last 4 years.  While I certainly could have created a Thread Theory raglan tee, I was over the moon to find a fellow Canadian indie pattern answered my (and your) wishes by creating one themselves…and, fortunately, they did it very well!

Have you heard of Jalie patterns?  If you haven’t, trust me, you will want to know more about them.  Here is their perfect raglan tee:

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It is nicely fitted, the features the ideal crew neckline, and has three sleeve lengths to choose from.  Plus, Jalie patterns include sizes ranging from Boys Age 2 all the way to Men Size 22 (with a 50″ chest)!!!

Jalie patterns is run by a mother and daughter team from Quebec.  The company was founded over 30 years ago and has always specialised in activewear and knits.  Their dance costume sewing patterns were used by my mom to create ballet and gymnastics costumes for my sister and I when we were small.

While Jalie has always been on my radar it was only when I searched for a raglan sewing pattern (after receiving another customer request) that I realised they had quite a few excellent menswear patterns to choose from.  Their collection coordinates very nicely with our patterns – I like to think we each fill the gaps in the other company’s offerings.

Take this pair of swim trunks for example:

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I had begun the design process for a remarkably similar pair last winter…but Jalie beat me to it and I am very glad about that because their pair is perfect.  It features colour-blocked panels and the exact sort of lace-up waistband closure I had hoped to include in my design.  One of our fabric distributors carries high tech fabrics that would be very suitable for men’s swim trunks…should I add some of these fabrics to our shop or are swim trunk fabrics already easy for you to source?

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To continue with my list of “most-requested patterns,” here is the polo shirt that many of you have asked me for.  This polo includes some interesting details such as a back yoke and optional shoulder tabs so that you can mix and match features to create a wardrobe of unique shirts.

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While we already include a few t-shirt patterns in our shop (such as the Strathcona Tee), this Jalie t-shirt still caught my eye because it has a high v-neckline variation.  The fit looks to be the perfect compromise between our slim-fitting Strathcona Tee and the easy fitting Hot Patterns Tee.

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Lastly, I really wish I had this vest pattern when I sewed my Dad his insulated vest two years ago!  I heavily modified the Seamwork Denali Vest with the end goal of creating exactly the style you see above.  I will certainly be sewing this one up in the future.

And that is the last of our new Jalie offerings!  I hope they inspire you to get sewing menswear as much as they have inspired me.  Plus, you will notice, if you click through to our shop that their printed patterns are very affordable.  They are printed on regular paper (not tissue paper) and the instructions are printed right on the pattern sheet (no separate booklet).  Their size lines are very clear despite the fact that their size range is so massive (each of their patterns will fit a toddler, a teenager, and a large man!!!).  They look to be a pleasure to use.

Now let’s move on to the next pattern company now available in our shop – Burda Style!

I came across these patterns in my search for a men’s pop-over shirt design.  Like the Jalie designs above, a pop-over shirt has been requested by a number of you over the years.  I really like the options included in this pattern:

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There is a version with a minimalist built in placket and two other versions with a yoke.  The back of all three versions includes a breezy inverted box pleat.  Plus, you can choose to sew a proper collar or leave off the collar to create the classic band collar/partial placket combo.  I was pleased to see that the sleeves are complete with a proper tower placket.

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Of course, I couldn’t limit myself to only one pattern!  I found a few other gems to include.  The cargo pants pictured above include zippers below the knee (on version 2) so that you can zip off the lower leg to create capris.  I like the detailed options – including zippered cargo pockets and the option to add articulating knees.

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While on first glance the trousers above and also the trousers below might look a tad like our Jedediah Pants, upon close inspection there are some interesting differences.  Now that our store includes three slim legged trouser designs prospective menswear trouser sewists will be able to choose their favourite option.

As you are aware, our Jedediah Pants are flat fronted (meaning there is no pleat), include patch pockets and also have a jeans-style back yoke.  The design above includes a flat front like the Jeds but then the back features double darts (4 darts in total) and welt pockets.  The design photographed below includes a single pleat on the front, single back darts, and one welt pocket.  Which of these three trouser designs best suits your criteria?

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The third company that has been freshly added to our shop is Kwik Sew.  We have two very different garments from them!

The first pattern looks, on first glance, to be just another unisex fleecy zip up pattern but upon closer inspection it is a very thoughtful design!

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The men’s version and women’s version feature different cuts which I think is quite promising – the women’s version looks curvy and fitted while the men’s is straighter and boxier.  The interesting angled seamlines remind me of high-end micro-fleece jackets from adventure or sport companies like Patagonia, Columbia or even Lululemon.  Maybe the pattern could be used to create something like this?

The second Kwik Sew pattern is a pair of rugged coveralls:

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These have been designed for functionality – they were drafted to fit over a full outfit of clothing and feature all sorts of useful pockets.  There are even side seam slits included so that the wearer can reach in to his trouser pockets while still wearing the coveralls.

The last new company was added to the shop because they were my most inspiring and consistent source for menswear patterns before Matt and I developed the idea to create Thread Theory….

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Vogue Patterns!  They have a monopoly on suit suit patterns and I don’t mind that because their selection is lovely and their instructions are thorough.  In fact, it’s a bit of a relief that I don’t have to create a suit pattern any time soon. 😛  Unless you guys have a special request?

The three suits I selected cover a wide range of styles.  The first suit that you see photographed above features both a double and single breasted unlined suit jacket.  The front extends towards the back to create a side-back seam (the same sort of seam included in our Goldstream Peacoat design).

The suit below includes a fully lined jacket with a slim shawl collar.  It includes the option to create a contrast shawl collar which would look classy in satin or velvet.

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The trousers included in the pattern above are very interesting because they have two variations – the second of which includes a side seam band made out of the same contrast fabric as the shawl collar.  If you happen to sew for a man (or you are a man) who likes to stand out in a crowd, I think this design made with a bright and personalised contrast fabric could make for a very unique suit!

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I like the suit jacket included in Variation A of this last Vogue suit pattern.  It includes two buttons, a nice modern notched collar and it is partially interfaced and fully lined.

While I was ordering suits I decided to include one last pattern since I thought it covered all loungewear bases so nicely!

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I think the robe/housecoat included with this pattern is perfect – it has an elegant shawl collar, two very nice length options and big patch pockets.  The pyjama bottoms, from what I can tell by examining the envelope, have the potential to be flattering – it seems like the sit below the natural waist and they include the detail of a self fabric drawstring.  Both of these design features are a step up from your standard home-ec rectangular one-size-fits all PJ project!

And there you have it, our new range of menswear patterns have been fully introduced!  Every one of these patterns was added to our shop because it has either been requested by you or it includes design features that I think will be useful to the style-savvy menswear sewists that we all are.   I hope my research and selective shopping has introduced you to a new menswear pattern company or has allowed you to see a familiar menswear designer from a fresh perspective!

Head to our shop to peruse our complete pattern collection >


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New garment photos for the Parkland Collection

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Have you seen our new Parkland Collection photos yet?  Let me show you!

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We began work on the Parkland Collection over 5 years ago when Thread Theory was still just an exciting idea for Matt and I.  We wanted to create casual menswear sewing patterns that would allow sewists to create the same comfortable and modern styles that they would buy ready made from a shop.

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Since we still stand by that concept of sewing practical garments to fill a man’s daily wardrobe, we figured it was high time to refresh the fabric choices, styling and location of our website photos!  We photographed several examples of the Newcastle Cardigan, Jedediah Pants, Strathcona Henley and Goldstream Peacoat at Rathtrevor park two weeks ago with my Grandpa, Dad and Matt as models.

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I’ve been dying to feature my Grandpa on our website because he has the most wonderfully friendly face you will ever see!

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Plus he looks exceptionally dashing in Variation 2 of our Newcastle Cardigan with the extra large shawl collar.  I sewed this Newcastle from a sage green wool blend knit that I purchased at one of our retailers, the Makehouse, in Victoria, B.C.  It’s thick and cozy but quite breathable so it is a great choice for the fluctuating spring weather that we’ve been having.

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My dad has always been our go-to model since he is so easy to photograph and always willing no matter how uncomfortable photo shoots make him.  I made him a Strathcona T-shirt since he wears out tees at a rapid pace and always needs a fresh one or two in his wardrobe…he’s never been enthusiastic on the idea of changing in to ‘work clothes’ before embarking on a messy project.  I guess I got that trait from him since I have been known to garden in dresses and hike in my favourite blouse!

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This particular Strath Tee is made using our bamboo and cotton stretch jersey which I will ALWAYS stock in our shop in a variety of colourways (as long as it is available for me to purchase).  As I’ve mentioned before, it is my favourite fabric and I happily dress myself head to toe in it!  It’s the perfect combo of silky smooth, extremely strong and fully opaque.  My dad reports that this t-shirt is really comfortable.

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I also made a Strathcona Henley for Matt, this time Variation 1 – the proper Henley.

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He needed a crisp white shirt that could be layered under button-ups or worn on its own.

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The crisp and shockingly white fabric that I used was the 100% cotton jersey t-shirt knit from our shop.  It was very easy to sew for a knit!  It is stable and does not curl and shift very much.  It’s also the exact weight and style of knit that Matt prefers to wear – he tends to choose thin jerseys over plush interlocks for a daily t-shirt.

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To pair with his new Henley, I also sewed Matt his favourite Jedediah shorts.  He has worn a few pairs out now over the years!

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This fresh minty green pair features buffalo check bias binding in navy blue to match some navy blue loafers that he just purchased…I think he’s going to look pretty coordinated this summer. 😉

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While we were at it, I attempted to take some fresh photos of the grey cotton twill Jedediah Pants that I sewed for Matt about three years ago.  They have worn so well and remain a constant in his wardrobe but I have never properly photographed them so I felt they deserved a little bit of attention!

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Here he’s paired them with the white Strath, his favourite Fairfield Button-up and his new navy blue loafers.  It’s a really smart look and I wish I could show you more photos but I am terrible at operating Matt’s camera and missed the focus on all of them. 😦  Next time we do a photoshoot I will try again!

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Last but not least, we took the opportunity to photograph my Dad in the gorgeous Goldstream Peacoat that my mom tailored for him.  She wrote a blog post about her experience sewing this coat three years ago.

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As you can see, her tailoring efforts have held up to a few winters of wear beautifully!

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She purchased the highest end wool she could find at our local fabric store and I think this was a great choice because the Goldstream that I made for Matt around the same time period has long since pilled horribly and headed for the scrap bin.  It was a wool blend with, I think, very little wool actually in it.  I have some gorgeous Pendleton wool cut out for Matt and I REALLY need to make him a Goldstream as smart as my dad’s version!

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Thanks, Dad, Grampie and Matt for handling the pressures of modelling so well!  As many of you who blog your creations must know, it can be a lot more challenging than you might think to remember how to smile (without it appearing as a grimace) or how to hold your hands (without clenching them in to tight fists) after 50 photos have been taken of you!

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I think my family did a wonderful job (if I do say so myself) and I am so proud that they wear the garments that I make them with such enthusiasm.

To celebrate these new photos and Father’s Day I’ve put our Parkland Collection on sale!

Head to our shop to purchase any Parkland Collection pattern at 20% off (PDF or tissue pattern!).  Use the discount code: FRESHPARKLAND  The sale expires at the end of Father’s Day Sunday, June 18th.


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Imminent Launch Day

I thought you might like to know that we have a new PDF pattern ready to launch next week!  The Belvedere Waistcoat will be here in time for Father’s Day projects and summer weddings!

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I’m working on some finishing touches today to prepare for a large selection of goodies we will be launching alongside this pattern.  So I’ll keep it short and sweet today.

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There will be a release day discount code for this pattern so make sure you are signed up to the newsletter or to this blog to ensure you will be informed of the code.


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Hemp, Bamboo and Organic Cotton: Spring Capsule Collection

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Spring menswear fabrics are in the shop!  I’ve created a capsule collection of blue, teal, grey and khaki that could be paired together to create a complete menswear outfit.  This collection focuses on more sustainable fibres – primarily hemp, organic cotton and bamboo.

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Above you can see that I’ve matched the new fabrics (top fabric and bottom two) with two of my re-stocked favourites from our Fall and Winter 2016/17 collections.  Top to bottom we have:

1. 100% cotton herringbone terry knit in heathered grey – perfect for a Finlayson Sweater.

2. My favourite bamboo and organic cotton jersey in grey and navy stripe (from the Winter collection) – this would make a great Strathcona Henley or Arrowsmith Undershirt.

3. 100% brushed cotton buffalo check shirting (from the Fall collection)- such a luxurious feeling fabric and perfect for the Fairfield Button-up.

4. Brand new deep teal hemp and organic cotton jersey – I’m really excited about this one!  It is unusual to find such a richly dyed hemp.  And this jersey doesn’t contain spandex…yay!  I like spandex in some fabrics but I find it frustrating how difficult it can be to find knits without spandex these days.  Because this doesn’t contain spandex it can be washed and dried with abandon without risk of wearing it out.  This would be ideal for a hard wearing Strathcona Henley or T-shirt and would also make a lovely Camas Blouse.  I am also stocking this hemp blend in an attractive flecked brown.

5. Also new for Spring, this Khaki colored canvas is comprised of hemp and organic cotton.  It is the perfect weight for Jedediah Pants or Jutland Pants.  The khaki colour is a classic which can fit in to any wardrobe.  It pairs beautifully with bright colours, neutrals, blacks, blues or browns…you don’t have to worry about wearing the wrong colour of shirt or shoes with this menswear trouser staple.

Before taking a closer look at the fabrics, here is a bit of the inspiration behind this collection.  Look closely to see designs similar to our Goldstream Peacoat, Newcastle Cardigan, Jedediah Pants, Fairfield Button-up and Strathcona Henley:

 

I really like the look of a layered Henley (especially the two Henleys worn one atop the other in the middle right photo).  I also think a buffalo check Fairfield Button-up Shirt peeking out from underneath a casual sweater (perhaps sewn from the grey herringbone terry) is a fresh look comprised of comfortable classics that many men could pull off, even if they aren’t all that interested in menswear fashion.  Of course, nautical stripes, khaki trousers and a white Henley are Spring classics that will always be in style and appealing!

All photos above are from the Pinterest boards that I’ve created for each of our patterns.  You can check them out (and link through to the original photo sources) here.

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Okay, let’s take a closer look at the fabrics.

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This khaki canvas is a rugged blend of 55% hemp and 45% organic cotton.  I really love how the hemp content adds a matte and nubby appearance to this fabric.  Hemp tends to wear in comfortably the way linen does to become softer and less rigid.  There is a depth and rustic charm to it that you would not find in a pure cotton canvas.  Hemp is a sustainable fibre because it can be cultivated densely without the use of herbicides or pesticides.  It is quick growing and does not deplete the nutrients in soil. It produces a very rugged textile that softens with each wash but does not easily wear out.

This particular canvas weighs 305 GSM or 9 oz/yard, which, in my opinion, is the ideal weight for menswear chinos or casual trousers.

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This jersey, the second hemp based fabric in our shop, is such a rich colour!  It is comprised of 55% hemp and 45% organic cotton.  It is completely opaque (imperative for menswear) but feels loose and light making it an excellent breathable fabric for warm weather t-shirts and Henleys.  I’m just about to sew my Dad a Strathcona T-shirt in the brown version of this hemp/organic cotton blend.  I can’t wait to hear his feedback!

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Like I said, this Buffalo Check isn’t a new fabric in our shop but I want to feature it again because I don’t think I’ve done it justice on the blog!  This brushed cotton shirting is a great weight for cosy and casual work shirts.  I made my Dad his black and red Fairfield Button-up last Fall and he has worn it steadily as a work shirt ever since…and the fabric still looks like new.  The brushed side is very soft and the smooth side looks quite polished.  I sewed my dad’s shirt with the smooth side to the inside since I like the appearance of the brushed fabric, but you could do the reverse so that the wearer can have the cosy brushed side against him and the smooth side facing out.  This would result in a dressier look (perfect with khaki Jeds and a Newcastle Cardigan!).

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We stock a navy and white stripe as well as this heathered grey and navy stripe bamboo jersey in the shop.  The navy and white is the current best seller but I think this colourway deserves consideration!  It is perhaps more approachable for conservative dressers because it doesn’t make such a bold nautical statement.

This bamboo and organic cotton jersey contains 6% spandex which, in the past, would not have been found in menswear fabrics but is now pretty much the norm for t-shirts in many of the big clothing chains!  The spandex allows for nice slim sleeves that will not become baggy with wear…just remember that spandex will degrade if subjected to the heat of a dryer regularly.  I think this stripe would make an awesome Strathcona Henley for layering under a Herringbone Terry Finlayson Sweater or Newcastle Cardigan.  It would look nice worn over a white t-shirt and paired with khaki Jedediah Shorts for a late spring and early summer look when you still need long sleeves to keep you warm.

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Lastly, here’s a great photo of the herringbone pattern on this super cosy cotton terry fabric.  I’ve stocked matching ribbing so you can create a Finlayson Sweater with ribbed cuffs and hem band.  This terry is the same fabric as the Oatmeal version that we stocked with our Winter fabric collection.  Even though my photos of the Oatmeal version of this fabric weren’t so great (they didn’t show the texture as much as I would have liked), this fabric sold out almost immediately!  Luckily I saved a bit to make myself a pair of Lazo Trouser sweatpants.  I wear them every day…the wrong side of this fabric feels just as soft as a brand new hoodie even after I’ve washed the pants many times.  I’ve saved a couple of meters of this grey version to make Matt a Finlayson Sweater (I’m thinking version 2 with the hood).

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And that’s it for our Spring collection!  I already have some plans for our summer fabrics (linen knits!!!) but would certainly consider adding some of your requests.  Is there a menswear fabric that you struggle to find?  Do you have a preference for a certain type of (more) sustainable fibre – linen, hemp, bamboo, organic cotton, or recycled polyester?

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