Shirting Details from Menswear:
Warning:This Post is Photo Heavy.
Often when a pattern instructs me to topstitch I just look at the garment and wing it. Though it would only take a few seconds I have been too lazy to grab a shirt or two and measure the typical topstitching points to determine stitch depth. The result is sometimes a shirt that subtly looks “wrong.”
I have several shirts planned over the next few months and I want them to look nice. Wanting to create a handy chart to place in my sewing area as a reference I decided to pull out a few of my husband’s shirts and measure the stitch depths.
Why my husband’s shirts and not my own, you may ask. Firstly, being thick in the middle I do not own many RTW women’s oxfords to use as a sample. RTW won’t close around my waist. That is why I am sewing my own.
Secondly, menswear often sets the standard for women’s oxford-style shirts and after an in-depth look at my husband’s closet I realized that menswear manufacturers have it down to a science. My husband owns essentially the same exact shirt in a variety of fabrics and colors. Though we in the Western world are coming upon close to two centuries of men wearing a cotton collared shirt, strangely I didn’t anticipate how efficient and frugal men’s clothiers had become.
Here is a chart of my findings.
I worry that the chart will come up too small so I will repeat the chart info with photos to illustrate. I looked at three different types of shirts: a standard work oxford, a dress shirt of finer cotton, and a dress shirt of softer material. There was very little variation in construction methods or design details.