Finished - Alohawear for my beloved, and a giveaway!
We've just spent the weekend at the fabulous Riverboat Festival in Echuca. This weekend has a very special meaning for my beloved and I, as it was this time last year that we got engaged! Anyway, I decided in the lead up to our holidays, and this weekend in particular, that I wanted to make Matt something special, especially as he had been working so very hard to get Sunny running well and sorted for our travels. He'd asked for a Hawaiian shirt ages ago, and I'd found a vintage pattern on ebay pretty quickly but struggled for a decent print. It uses nearly 3 metres of fabric and for a first attempt I was fairly pragmatic and wasn't keen to spend a heap on something he might not wear much. Anyway, long story short - Spotlight had nothing that was stylish (or polyester free - I freely admit to being a synthetic snob) but Darn Cheap came through with the goods in its quilting cotton section with a lovely muted palm tree beach print for $7.50/m.
I love the buttons - also from Darn Cheap. They really add that vintage feel:
I've got to be honest here - this is one of the best things I've made - definitely the best thing I've made for him, that's for certain! How cool is it?
I know that hawaiian shirts (or more correctly known as Alohawear as I recently found out) can be tacky but my beloved does enjoy a bit of a 50's look, with a modern twist, and I think with the right fabric and a good fit they can be quite dapper. I mean, look at these other fab gents rocking the Aloha:
Captain Hawkeye Pearce from MASH. Alohawear features heavily in MASH, set in the 50's as it is, and both the men and women often sport their fab shirts when trying to relax. Hawkeye. Sigh. I was I love with him as a young girl before I even understood what a crush was.
Tom Selleck as Magnam PI. No one rocks a mo like Tom. Love him!
And finally this stylish young lad:
How cute was Elvis as a young man? And that shirt is a winner in my book!
So back to the pattern. Butterick 4763 is an easy make, but seriously oversized. It came in L and XL. I went for the L based on the measurements but ended up taking several centimetres out of the width each side, and out of the armscye to raise the shoulder seam. I used a similar style shirt that we bought in NY (with lobsters on it - another classic 50's print!) for sizing and the fit is pretty much perfect. The only slightly not-great part is part of the collar, but fortunately the busy print hides the issue. The collar is a 2 piece job, without a collar stand - a bit like a bowling shirt. The benefit of taking in the seams was that it gave me lovely big seam allowances to do flat felled seams in the armscyes - they look so great, such a nice RTW finish. The sleeves are inserted flat, then the arm and side seams are done as one, which makes it super easy to do them flat felled. I was a bit tired by the time came to do the arm and side seams, so I just frenched them, which looks great when he rolls the sleeves up. I really enjoyed making this shirt, obviously because I just knew it was going to be super cool, but also because it is a really good pattern and it was nice to be able to get such nice finishes on the inside and such an easy fit (men are so much easier to fit dammit!). I've promised him one a year.....
Now, the other awesome thing was that in an Echuca op shop I found an epic stash of patterns (country op shops are THE best) including this uncut Butterick 6025 in a very similar in style to the 4763. The main difference is it has a back yoke, and side splits (which I wouldn't do - waste of time!). It's a size 38 chest (97cm), and the finished chest/ab measurement is 109cm. You want it? Just let me know in the comments, and you can have it - I'll leave the giveaway open for a week from today (say, last day of Feb) and if there's more than one taker I'll do a little ballot. You MUST let me know if you make your beloved some Alohawear - we could start a Flickr group! Am happy to post worldwide.
So what's the verdict? Is the hawaiian shirt a classic part of a gentlemans leisure wardrobe? Or a tacky excuse for a man to get in on some printed fabric action?
He totally rocks it, such a spunk rat!