Thread Theory

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


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

Vintage sewing patterns for men-13

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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Waistcoat Sew-Along: Day 12 – The Parade

The Drapery Waistcoat 1

I have a treat for you today – a parade of finished Belvedere Waistcoats!  I hope your waistcoats will be worn to many memorable events this summer!  I know a few of them were sewn for lucky grooms and others were sewn to wear at the local pub.  Maybe others will be given to a deserving Dad this Father’s Day (on Sunday)?

The Drapery Waistcoat 2

The dark grey fabric and luxurious champagne lining used on this waistcoat are a perfect combo of fabrics.  And those welt pockets look very well executed!  This Belvedere was sewn by Jane of The Drapery for her husband, Andy.  She wrote a review on The Drapery blog.

Zaks Belvedere Waistcoat

Next we have a work of art sewn by Zak!  Check out the embroidery and the custom chest pocket!  Plus, I don’t think I need to point out the paisley lining since it is difficult to miss (and matches the embroidery so beautifully).

Belvedere Waistcoat Zak.JPG

Many of you have been sharing your Belvedere photos on Instagram using #belvederewaistcoat  Here are a few of the versions that stood out to me today:

Happy #memademay2017 . Today we have my test version of the #belvederewaistcoat from @threadtheorydesigns made in #conemills selvage denim purchased @stonemountainfabric in #berkeley. We also have the #strathconahenley i made for my hubby last year (also @threadtheorydesigns ) and my super sexy #ddsafran jeans @deer_and_doe_patterns . And of course, underneath it all is my #watsonbra from @clothhabit. All fabric purchased @stonemountainfabric . Vest buttons are new old stock. I made no mods for fit. Size xs worked fine, but I'm not very buxom. The length and waist circumference was perfect for my 5'6" height and athletic build. I usually wear a women's medium and have measurements of 37-30-40. Only pattern mod was adding a belt and buckle to waist darts in back (not pictured here). Mine is non-functional but making it function would solve fit issurs for many women (or busty men). Beautiful pattern. Thank you @threadtheorydesigns for letting me test. #memadeeveryday #makersgonnamake #denimlove #menswear #vintagestyle #indiepatterns #isewmyownclothes #sewist #sewistsofinstagram

A post shared by Yavanna Reynolds (@yavannareynolds) on

To finish off this sew-along parade, Matt photographed me in my new Belvedere standing in front of the garden.

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As mentioned before, I did not make the suggested alterations to my waistcoat in order to fit it to a female figure.  I wanted this sample to serve as a visual example to show why making a few simple fit adjustments can lead to a much more flattering waistcoat for women.

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The main thing to notice is that smaller armholes are needed.  For me they gape at the front but on other women (depending on your bust size), you may find they gape at the back.  I’ve explained how to adjust the armhole earlier in the blog.

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Since I have a pretty small bust measurement I don’t think the gaping is that bad or noticeable.  The main thing I dislike is how low the armhole sits at my underarm.  The next time I sew a Belvedere for myself I will reduce the scoop of the front armhole so that the curve is more shallow and so that the side seam is at least 1″ longer.

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I think this waistcoat will be worn often in the Fall despite the fact that it is not perfectly fitted to my figure.  I love how warm the spongy wool is!  It’s satisfying to have a project finished and sitting in my closet a whole season early…that doesn’t happen often.

If ever you would like to share your Belvedere Waistcoat masterpiece, use #belvederewaistcoat on Instagram, join our Facebook Thread Theory Sewing CommunityFacebook Thread Theory Sewing Community, or email me at info@threadtheory.ca

Happy Father’s Day!


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New garment photos for the Parkland Collection

Parkland Menswear Pattern Collection-10

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.

Parkland Menswear Pattern Collection-1

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.

Parkland Menswear Pattern Collection-2

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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Waistcoat Sew-Along: Day 11 – Adding buttons

This marks the final Waistcoat Sew-Along post!  Today you get to try on your finished waistcoat!

Thread Theory Belvedere Waistcoat Sewalong Sew on buttons-13

All that remains is to sew our buttonholes and stitch on our buttons.  I will run through how to do this as per the instruction booklet but first, based on a few emails from you guys, I’ve assembled ideas to help you avoid buttons…but really, I highly encourage you to try your hand a buttonholes because they aren’t that difficult and are essential for an elegant and classic waistcoat.  As you can see, button alternatives are quite a statement and only work for certain situations:

Buttonless waistcoats

  1. Quilted and Snaps
  2. Leather and Snaps
  3. Wool and Zipper

Another idea is to close the waistcoat with ties or buckles.  I couldn’t find any examples of this style of closure for menswear but I have added our Lazo Trousers buckles to the waistcoat I am making for myself so you can see how this idea could look in reality!

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To add regular buttons and buttonholes:

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Begin by refreshing or freshly making your buttonhole markings.  If you are sewing Variation 1 you will be stitching 6 buttonholes and for Variation 2 you will be stitching 5.  This is really a matter of preference though – you could change the spacing of the buttonholes and reduce to three or four if you desired!

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The buttonholes will be on the left hand side of the waistcoat (if you were wearing the garment).  You can see I have a stack of examples on my dress form to prove this button and hole placement!  I guess that’s what happens when you sew endless samples for a pattern, you end up with more waistcoats than any one person could wear. 😛

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Position them approximately 3/8″ to 1/2″ from the edge of the waistcoat front…you can choose your distance based on the fit you would like to achieve.  Stitching them closer to the edge of the waistcoat will give your wearer a little bit more room while stitching further from the edge will create a more snug fitting waistcoat.

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Choose a buttonhole size that is slightly longer than the diameter of your buttons.  This makes it easy for the wearer to button and unbutton his waistcoat.  Check out this Craftsy article to determine exactly what size of buttonhole you need.

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I like to stitch around my buttonholes twice to create tidy and dense rows of stitching…of course, this can really depend on how your individual sewing machine and buttonhole stitching mechanism functions.

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Slice open the buttonholes using a seam ripper with pins placed across either end of the buttonhole to prevent your seam ripper from slicing too far.

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Alternatively, you can use a buttonhole chisel and cutting board.  You could even snip with delicate buttonhole scissors.

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Stitch your buttons on to the right hand side of the waistcoat (if you were wearing the garment) so that they correspond to the buttonholes.  I like to re-check my markings by overlapping the waistcoat fronts and placing a pin through the buttonhole.  This way I can be sure the button will line up perfectly with the hole.

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You might like to check out my tutorial about sewing on a button – I explain how to use beeswax to strengthen your thread and how to make a thread shaft for a strong button that is slightly raised from the garment fabric so that it is easy to use.

If you have sewn the tabs on to your waistcoat, add buttonholes to the tabs and then a total of four buttons to the waistcoat back.  Position one set so they match the tab buttonhole without cinching the waistcoat back.

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Place the other set so that they cinch the waistcoat back just enough to add some extra shaping.

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You can see the cinched version on the left hand side of the photo above and the relaxed version on the right hand side.

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And that’s it!  With a final press and perhaps a handstitched label on the back facing, your waistcoat is finished!

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I will be sharing a parade of Belvedere Waistcoats on the blog next Friday, June 16th in honour of Father’s Day.  Would you like your Belvedere in the parade?  Email me at info@threadtheory.ca with photos or comment below with a link to your blog, Instagram or Facebook post.  Alternatively, use #belvederewaistcoat on Social Media to share your finished project.

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I can’t wait to see what you have created!  Thanks for sewing along.


On an unrelated note, you may have seen on Facebook that we are hiring! If you follow this blog and live in the Comox Valley, I hope you will consider applying.  Here is the advertisement (click to see the full resolution image):

TT_JobPosting

 


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Waistcoat Sew-Along: Day 10 – Assembling the Back

Today we all but finish our waistcoats!  By the end of this post the back and back lining will be completely attached to the waistcoat fronts so that buttonholes and buttons will be the only remaining step.

Thread Theory Belvedere Waistcoat Sewalong Assemble the Back-2

Prepare your waistcoat fronts by basting the open shoulder and side seams closed.  This way the layers won’t shift around when you attach the back.

If you have drafted a partial shawl collar as I did in an earlier sew-along post, you will need to fold it over and stitch it in place before attaching your waistcoat back.

Thread Theory Belvedere Waistcoat Sewalong Assemble the Back-5

My fabric choice is unusually thick, so your collar will look much smoother and more flat when you fold it over.  Do not press the folded roll line (it looks best when it is softly folded), just pin and then stitch the collar in place along the shoulder seam.

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I handstitched the collar to the waistcoat front to keep it secure during my next sewing steps…I plan to take out this stitching once the waistcoat is finished, I just did this to reduce the bulk of the collar and maintain the shape of the collar even when the waistcoat is crumpled up and being pulled through the hem hole later (you’ll see what I mean in a bit!).

Also, I didn’t mention this during the post where we drafted the collar or where we understitched along the waistcoat front: You might like to stop your understitching just below your last button and leave the neckline without understitching.  When you fold over the collar the facing becomes the visible part of the collar so your understitching is front and centre!  The understitching also prevents the seam from being pressed slightly to the underside of the collar (in fact, it encourages the seam to roll towards the facing which makes it more visible.  If I were to sew another vest with this style of collar I would make sure to stop my understitching before the top button.  As it is, this chunky wool waistcoat will have other visible topstitching (on the tabs and at the armholes) so hopefully the understitching doesn’t look too out of place.  I’m sorry if you now have to pick out some unwanted understitching, I should have thought to mention this sooner!

Ok, with the collar ready to go, let’s move on to another feature I’ve added to the waistcoat I am sewing for myself – the tabs found in our free add-on pattern pieces.  Scroll down until you see the pinstriped waistcoat if you have not chosen to add these tabs.

Place each pair of tabs with right sides together and stitch around the long and pointed edges.

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Trim the seam allowances and corners thoroughly.

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Flip the tabs right side out.

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Press them thoroughly and topstitch around the perimeter (I used 1/4″ topstitching but it is up to you what you use!).  You could skip topstitching for a clean finish if you preferred.

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Place the tabs on the waistcoat back at the narrowest point of the waist.

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Baste them in place within the seam allowance.

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Now you are ready to proceed with adding the waistcoat back to the fronts as per the instruction booklet!

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Lay the waistcoat back (not the back lining) on your work surface right side up.  Lay the fronts on top of the back so that right sides are together.  Pin along the shoulder and side seams.

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Baste along the shoulder and side seams using a scant 5/8″ seam allowance.  Now is a perfect time to try the waistcoat on the wearer to check for fit!  If you notice gaping along the back armhole you can experiment by taking in the shoulder or side seam.  If you notice more or less room is needed at the waist (with the fronts pinned closed) you can take in our let out the side seam.

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With any small fit adjustments done, it is now time to add on the back lining!  Place the waistcoat back on to your work surface so the wrong side of your fronts are visible.  Lay the back lining on top so that the wrong side is facing up.  Pin along the shoulder seams, the neckline and the side seams.

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Stitch the shoulder, neckline and side seams by following your basting stitches.  To stitch the shoulders and neckline, begin by stitching one shoulder seam towards the neckline.  Stop when you feel the neckline edge of your waistcoat front.  Pivot your needle and stitch around the back neckline.  Pivot once again when you feel the second waistcoat front edge and then finish by stitching along the second shoulder seam.

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The only remaining openings are now the armholes and the hem.  Pin the back and lining armhole seams together.  You will need to shift the waistcoat fronts out of the way and stretch out the larger back armholes.

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Stitch the armholes from shoulder seam to side seam.

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The armholes feature a strong curve so it is necessary to clip these seam allowances carefully.  You should also clip the neckline seam allowances to help this curve sit nicely when the waistcoat is flipped right side out.

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Now the only step remaining is to stitch the hem.  We will be leaving a gap between one of the darts and the centre back seam so that the waistcoat can be flipped right side out.  Stitch from one side seam to the dart and backstitch.  Stitch from the other side seam to the centre back and backstitch.  If you are working with unusually thick fabrics you may need to leave a larger opening than this.

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Trim the hem seam allowances and corners.  Now fish the entire waistcoat through that hole and press the side seams, neckline, shoulder seams, armholes and hem thoroughly!

Thread Theory Belvedere Waistcoat Sewalong Assemble the Back-40

Close up the hem by hand.  And while you do so, you may find that your carefully pressed waistcoat has become a cat bed (it seems as though she can sense when I’m going to be standing still and hand stitching for a while).

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Now, we’re ready to add the buttonholes to the waistcoat front, the corresponding buttons and perhaps a label to the neckline!


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Waistcoat Sew-Along: Day 9 – Finishing the Front

Today we will be attaching the lining and facing to the Belvedere Waistcoat fronts.  If you are sewing Variation 1, the first step is to create the side seam vents.  These vents can actually be added to either variation if you would like a little bit more room for movement.  The vent expands to create a larger circumference around the stomach while you sit, bend or simply have a full belly after a large meal!

Thread Theory Belvedere Waistcoat Sewalong Front Lining-1

Begin by cutting a small rectangle of fusible interfacing measuring approximately 2″ X 3″.  Apply this to the wrong side of the lining at the bottom of each side seam.  This will help add rigidity to the lining fabric so that the vent appears crisp and flat when finished.

Thread Theory Belvedere Waistcoat Sewalong Front Lining-2

Pin the waistcoat front to the lining with right sides together.

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Beginning at the side seam notch, stitch across the 5/8″ seam allowance.  When you get to the seamline, place your needle down in to the fabric and pivot around it.  Stitch an angled line towards the hem notch.

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Trim along your stitching so seam allowances are 1/4″ or less to reduce bulk.  Clip up to your stitching at the corner.
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Regardless of whether you are sewing Variation 1 or 2, it is now time to sew the hem, front and neckline seams.  If you have added the vent, begin stitching at the hem notch.  If you have not added the vent, begin stitching at the side seam.  Stitch along the hem, pivot at the angled point and then stitch up the front until you reach the shoulder.

To prevent the lining and facing from rolling to the right side when your waistcoat is worn, understitch as far as possible along the hem and front.

Thread Theory Belvedere Waistcoat Sewalong Front Lining-8

To understitch, work from the right side of the garment and stitch the facing and lining to the seam allowance.  Your stitching should be 1/8″ from your original seam.

Thread Theory Belvedere Waistcoat Sewalong Front Lining-10

It won’t be possible to understitch around the angled point at the hem.  Simply stitch as far as possible and backstitch.  Then you can continue a new line of understitching along the hem.

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Trim one seam allowance shorter than the other and thoroughly clip in to the seam allowance along curves.  Also clip across corners to reduce bulk.

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Next we will close up the armhole.  With raw edges of the fabric even and right sides together, pin the front and lining together along the curve of the armhole.  Match the dart.  Depending on the fabrics that you are using, you may notice that the lining has stretched out or that your wool front has shrunk during the sewing process.  Not to worry!  Lay out the lining so that it flat and equal in size (or slightly smaller) than the waistcoat front.  Trim off the 1/8″ or so excess along the curve of the armhole.  This will help to prevent the lining from peeking out on the right side of the waistcoat at the armhole.

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Stitch the armhole curve using a 5/8″ seam allowance.

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It is necessary to thoroughly trim the seam allowances and clip in to the curves since the armhole curve is so exaggerated.  These clips will allow the fabric to sit smoothly when the garment is flipped right side out.

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And now it is time!  Let’s flip the waist coat front right side out!

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Do this by reaching in to the open side seam.

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Now give the front a very thorough press.

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Are you proud of how beautiful your finished front looks?  I hope so!

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Tomorrow we will add on the back and our waistcoats will be VERY close to finished!