Posts Tagged ‘men’


Pattern Drafting 101 – The Men’s Shirt Sleeve Block

18 February, 2011

Thank you all for your support- it makes me incredibly happy to see all those hits on my drafting posts! Let me know if there’s anything you want to see and feel free to post comments or questions!

Also, my fiancé pointed out to me today that I should include a glossary of terms on this site, so starting with this post, I’m including hyperlinks to the new glossary page. I’ll be going back and adding them to the older posts soon.

For the men’s shirt sleeve, you’re going to need the following:

  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Newsprint Paper (It’s easier to see through than thicker papers and will be useful in transferring the markings from the shirt to the sleeve. It’s also fairly inexpensive and readily available at most craft stores.)
  • A copy of your completed Men’s Shirt block – you’ll be using markings from this to create the sleeve, so make sure you haven’t erased your marked points.

Step 1: Rename the Points- For the sake of simplicity, we’re going to rename some of the points on our completed Men’s Shirt block to use on our Sleeve Block. Rename the following points according to the chart below.

Shirt Block Replace with….
Point K Point (a)
Point L Point (b)
Point Y Point (f)
Point U Point (g)
Point M Point (h)

Step 2: Measure the Armscye- Lay a flexible measuring tape or a length of string along the armscye curve. Record this measurement. Extend the line (ab) upwards a distance of 1/3 the armscye measurement and mark the end point (c).

Step 3: Drawing in the Construction Lines- Extend the Armscye Line out to the left, through point B. It doesn’t really matter how far, just far enough. You can always make it longer if you need to. Do the same from Point (c). Mark point (d) halfway along line (ac), and extend a line out to the left of point (d) approximately the same length as your other two construction lines. These lines don’t need to be drawn in very heavily; you’ll only be erasing them at the end.

Step 4: Mark Some New Points- Where the construction line from (d) intersects with the left side of the armscye, mark the point (e).

Step 5: Measure and Pivot- Measure the distance from (f) to (b) in a straight line. Add 1.5cm to this and record. Pivot your ruler on point (b) until it intersects with the topmost construction line at the distance you just recorded, to the left of point (b). Draw the line and mark the endpoint (i).

Measure the distance again from (g) and (e) in a straight line. Add 1.25cm and record. Pivot your ruler on point (i) until it intersects with the middle construction line at the distance you just recorded, to the left of point (i). Draw the line and mark the endpoint (j).

Step 6: Measure and Pivot again- Measure the distance along the curve from (e) to (h). Add 1.25cm and record. Pivot your ruler around point (j) until it intersects with the Armscye Line at the distance you just recorded, to the left of point (j). Draw the line and mark the endpoint (k).

Measure the distance again along the curve from (b) to (h). Add .75cm and record. Pivot your ruler on point (b) until it intersects with the Armscye Line at the distance you just recorded, to the right of point (b). Draw the line and mark the endpoint (l).

Step 7: Sleeve Length- Draw a vertical line straight down from point (i) to the desired sleeve length (This block creates a long dress-shirt sleeve. I’ll go over pattern editing for shorter sleeves at a later date. For now, it’s good to have a longer base to work from). Mark the endpoint (m).

Step 8: The Hem Line- Draw a horizontal line to the right of point (m) until the end lines up with point (l). Mark the end point (n) and connect (n) to (l) with a straight line. (mnl) should be a right angle. Do the same for the left side, marking the end point (o) and connecting (o) to (k)

Step 9: Suppressing the Shirt Block- Go ahead and get rid of your shirt block lines at this point. You won’t need them after this. Make sure to keep everything you’ve done on the sleeve so far.

Step 10: Shaping the Sleeve- Measure 5cm inward from (n). Mark the point (p), and connect it to point (l). Do the same on the other side, marking the resulting point (q) and connecting it to point (k).

Step 11: Sleeve Slit- Mark point (r) midway between (m) and (q). Draw a short, 1cm line straight down from point (r), and mark the end point (s). Draw a line straight up from (s) 10cm long. Mark the end point (t). The line (st) will become the sleeve plaquette in the finished pattern.

Step 12: The Sleeve Hem- Draw a curved line connecting points (m), (s), and (q).

Step 13: Drawing the Sleeve Cap– Connect the points at the top of the sleeve with curved lines, following the chart below.

From point… To point… Direction of Curve Maximum Deviation



Downward 0.75cm



Upward 1.5cm



Upward 2cm



None (straight) 0cm



Downward 0.75cm

Step 14: Marking the Elbow Line- Find the halfway point between  (n) and (t); 2.5cm above that, mark a point (z). Draw a horizontal line through (z) until you reach the line (kq). This is the elbow line of the sleeve.

Step 15: Cleaning up- erase all the construction lines, and you should be left with something that looks like this:

Tada! You’re done! You now have a completed men’s shirt sleeve block ready to be turned into something amazing!


Pattern Drafting 101 – The Men’s Shirt Block

17 February, 2011

These Pattern Drafting posts seem to be really popular- thank you so much!

Next up in the Pattern Drafting 101 Series, the Men’s Shirt Block, again from Gedwood’s BurdaStyle tutorials, located here. This block will not be as form-fitting as the women’s bodice block, but for the most part, men’s fashions tend toward looser styles. With a little tweaking (and we’ll be getting into some “uber-leet pattern editing hax” later), you can use this block to create more tailored men’s fashions. This one is a little long, since it incorporates the sleeve as well, so I’m going to split this post into two.

Again, you will need pencils and a large pad of paper, a long ruler, and a french curve.

* ** *** ** *

Step 1: Mark Point A. Orient your paper in landscape orientation, or with the longest dimension running horizontally in front of you. Mark a point in the upper left hand corner about 1cm from either edge of the paper. Mark this point A. Draw straight down from this point the distance of the armscye depth + 2.5 cm. Mark the endpoint B.

Step 2: Mark Point C one half the chest measurement + 8cm to the right of Point B. Connect points B and C. Line BC is the Armscye line of the shirt.

Step 3: Draw straight up from Point C the same distance as line AB. Mark the endpoint D.

Step 4: Draw guideline AD. This line won’t show up in the finished product, so you may want to draw it in lightly.

Step 5: Extend the line AB downwards until the whole line measures the distance of the waist length + 1cm. Mark the endpoint E. Do the same for line DC, marking that endpoint F. Connect E and F with a horizontal line. This line should be the same length as line BC. Line EF is the waist line of the shirt.

Step 6: Extend the line AE downwards again to the desired length of the finished shirt, plus 1 cm (3/8 in.) and mark the end point G. Do the same from line DF, marking the end point H. Connect points G and H with a straight line. Line GH is the hemline of the shirt.

Step 7: Measure along the Armscye Line a distance of half the back measurement plus 2.5cm. Mark that point I. Draw a perpendicular line from Point I to Line AD. Mark the point where they meet Point J.

Step 8: Measure from point B along the Armscye Line, a distance of 1/3 of the chest measurement + 1.5cm. Mark the endpoint K. Draw a vertical line upward from point K 3.5cm. Mark the endpoint L. Later on, we’ll use Line KL to help us define the sleeve.

Step 9: Measure the distance from point I to point K along the Armscyle Line. From point K, mark a distance of half the IK measurement minus 0.5 cm  to the left along the armscye line. Mark this point M. Draw a vertical line down from this point, crossing the Waist Line (mark the intersection point N) and meeting the Hem Line (mark this point O).

Step 10: Measure the distance of ½ the Armscye depth plus 1cm down from point A. Mark this point P. Draw a horizontal line from point P to meet the line IJ. Mark this point Q.

Step 11: From point A, measure 1/5 of the neck measurement minus 0.5cm to the right. Mark the end point R. Draw a short vertical line up 2cm from Point R. Mark the end point S. Draw a curved line from point A to point S. This is the back of the neck line.

Step 12: Measure up from point Q ¼ of the Armscye depth plus 4 cm. Mark this point T. Then measure 3.5cm to the right of Point T. Mark this point U.

Step 13: Connect Points S and U with a straight line. This is the back shoulder seam.

Step 14: Measure 1/5 of the neck measurement down from point D. Mark the endpoint V. Measure the same distance minus 1cm to the left of point D. Mark this point W. Draw in the neck curve between points V and W.

Step 15: Draw a short, 2cm line down from point U. Mark the end point X. Draw another line from X to the right about halfway to Line CD.

Step 16: Measure the line SU. Add 0.5cm to that measurement and record that amount. Pivot your ruler around on point W until it intersects with the horizontal line X at the distance you just recorded. Connect the two points and mark this intersection point Y.

Step 17: Connect Points Y and L with a straight line. Draw this line in lightly, you’ll be erasing it in just a little bit.

Step 18: Construct the Armscye by connecting points U, Q, M, L, and Y with a curved line. Make sure that the curve stays within 1.25cm of line LY, within 1.75cm of point K, and within 3 cm from point I.

Step 19: Erase all extraneous lines, leaving only the outer lines, the armscye line, the waistline and the center line MO. You should have something that looks like this:


Great Things to Do with Men’s Dress Shirts…

19 May, 2010

… other than, you know, give them to a guy and make him wear it. You know, silly stuff like that.

But in all seriousness, almost everyone has either a man in thier life who will, inevitably, outgrow a dressshirt, or have one shrink on them, or will, for some reason, get rid of one. Yeah, you could send it to a Salvation Army/Goodwill/Thrift Store, but why would you when you can put it to a much more fun and immediate use?

This week I bring to you the “What to Do with an Oversized Men’s Dress Shirt” collection, courtesy of the internetz.

Women’s Ruffled Top by Carly J. Cais at Threadbanger

Refashioned Men’s Top #3 (Shirley Pintucked Tunic) by CleverGirl

Refashioned Men’s Top #2 (Babydoll Top) by CleverGirl

Refashioned Men’s Top#1 (Women’s Dress Top) by CleverGirl

Peasant Blouse by MadeByLex

Belted Skirt by Christine Haynes at CraftStylish

Super Cute Babydoll Dress by Chic Steals

Adorable Child’s Halter Dress by Gezellig-Girl

Toddler’s Dress by Cheytown at Craftster


Open Source Unmentionables!

16 May, 2010

Yeah, I don’t like the sound of that either…

Today, I bring you DIY underwear. Yeah, you heard me. Underwear.  You know, the one article of clothing that everyone needs and most crafters (myself included) don’t even think to make? Yeah, here’s a heads up: you can make those.

I think my favorites have to be Colette Patterns’ free Madeline Mini-Bloomers.

Colette Pattern's Mini Bloomers

Made from a yard of fabric, elastic and ribbon, they’re really simple to make: really, the only skills required are the ability to run a straight stitch and to be comfortable working with elastic and buttonholes. I’ll probably make a pair for myself soon! The pattern is available for free through the Colette Patterns’ website.

Got any old t-shirts lying around that don’t fit or you just can’t wear, but you can’t find the heart to throw out? (Yes, you do.) Well, now, with a little work, you have really cute, one-of-a-kind panties. has a free downloadable pattern for bikini-cut underwear that’s great for everyday wear- just scale the pattern piece to correspond with your hip measurement.

SuperNaturale's Kitty Tee Panties

This guy here at get’s the award for A) having the most varied collection of FREE underwear patterns I’ve ever found- for both women AND men, and B) for writing relatively easy to follow tutorials in thier non-native language. Mad props to you, sir.

This place has it all- every style and flavor you can imagine is here, with free pattern (designed to be printed on A4 paper- you may have to do a bit of slicing and dicing in Photoshop to get them to fit on multiple sheets of 8.5 x 11 paper.) up for download.

How To Make Underwear

Basic Lined Bikini-cut Panties

“Big Soft Panties”

Simple Unlined Bra

Woman’s Camisole Top

Classic Men’s Boxers

Men’s Boxer Briefs

Classic Little Boy’s Briefs

Classic Little Boy’s Boxers

Classic Little Girl’s Panties

Little Girl’s Swimsuit

Not-So-Classic Men’s Bikini (can easily by modified to fit a woman)

Men’s Pink Lace Thong (can easily be modified to fit a woman)


And what about bras? What if you’re someone like me, who suddenly discovered one morning that she, in fact, wears a 34C (not the 34B she’d worn the previous WEEK) and lives in the middle of nowhere. In case you were unaware, they don’t sell 34C’s in the Middle of Nowhere Wal*Mart. Or maybe you’re like my roommate, the rugby-playing LARPer in a 35B- 34’s are too small, even on the widest setting, 36’s are too big, even on the smallest settin, or like my friend in a 32E…

How is it that women can actually buy bras anymore?! And why would you want to, at $10-$15 each for a cheap one?

This is a rant I go off on a lot. Thanks to Threads Magazine, however, you won’t have to hear it.

The Bra Dilemma Solved!

Okay, so it’s not the be all and end all of bra sewing. It’s just some pointers and construction notes, and where to find these purchase patterns.

THIS is the be all and end all of bra sewing… and underwear sewing… and pajama sewing… and lingerie sewing… and I could go on and on. This is a pretty extensive list of free patterns- bras, underwear, camisoles, robes, slippers, teddies, nighties, slips and boxers.

75 Free Lingerie Sewing Patterns

Congradulations, I have completely rocked your world. You now have absolutely no reason to ever go bra or underwear shopping again. Ever.

Unless, you know, you like that sort of thing. I’m not gonna judge.