Monday, February 19

Sewing For Men - Newcastle Cardigan

Most of my sewing friends don't sew for the men in their lives. I seem to be a rare case, but my husband actually puts in requests. I haven't done a ton but it appears that most of my manly sewing has been outer wear (see his William vest here). I've made him a base layer for skiing using the mens metro tee from Leisl and Co and the Finlayson sweater from Thread Theory. I've actually made my dad two Finlayson sweaters as well! I have a couple other Thread Theory patterns I need to get around to making him, but for now, he put in one of his requests.

On the 13th, he reminded me that I haven't made him anything in a while and he felt like it was his turn. I asked him what he wanted and was pretty quick to answer. He used to have a cardigan from Old Navy in French terry with a shawl collar that was casual enough to pair with jeans but could be nice enough to wear to work with a dress shirt and slacks. I showed him the Newcastle Cardigan from  Thread Theory and he approved. He wanted navy (he's as predictable as me) so I paired it with favorite cotton spandex French Terry from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.
I then decided to make it for him for Valentines Day (the very next day!) because we had no plans and I hadn't really done anything. Granted, his 30th birthday was the 12th and I surprised him with a night away and tons of other surprises and we returned the afternoon of the 13th so that kind of felt like our Valentines experience too...but anyway I digress. 

I printed, assembled, cut, added length, and made it all that day. It took a trip after work with him to pick out buttons he liked but still. A win! and He seriously loves it guys! He wore it the next day to work (and is wearing it to work again today) and wore it to church, AND requested another because he wants to wear it all the time. So I couldn't be happier.

I did make a few adjustments. First, I sized down, as I always do for him. In the Finlayson sweater I size down two sizes to make it a slim fit, but the Newcastle Cardigan is already called slim fit, so I sized down only 1 size. He likes a very slim fit...can you tell? I also added 2 inches to the body (he's almost 6' 3") and 2 inches to she sleeves but they ended up a little long and I removed 1 inch. I also slimmed the sleeve about the elbow down quite a bit and made the cuff way smaller. It was huge.

I added the yoke pieces but in the same fabric and I am so glad I did! I'm not big on contrast so I'm loving this look. The buttons are too contrasting for me but hey! He picked them and he wears it all the time so whatevs. I like the extra thickness and stability you get around the shoulders, (the yoke, collar, button band and facings are interfaced) not to mention the added appeal from the top stitching. I think it just looks so more finished and masculine with those touches.

He's happy, (and in all honesty he's a tough customer and will you have me redo things and alter if he doesn't love it. case in point this is the first time I have ever unpicked a button hole!) so I'm happy and I quite enjoy sewing for him occasionally.

Do you have any menswear patterns?Are you afraid to sew for men? Its not so bad I promise I give it a try and show me what you make!

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