This was my second Alex shirt (from the Sew Over It: City Break eBook) so I was hoping that it would be better than my first one – which, looking back, I realise I never reviewed! What a bad egg – I’ll make sure that it’s all properly gone through here!
My first version was made of a super cute mustard cotton that I got for my birthday, which was really very lovely but a little more structured than the pattern was designed to be. I don’t mind it being a little sturdier at all – au contraire, I’m a fan and I wear it all the time! I went for a cotton lawn for my second version so that it’d be a little drapier than the first, but still wearable in winter.
When you sew, you suddenly become aware of all of the bits of your body that you didn’t quite notice before – i.e. that I have a freakishly small shoulder to shoulder distance. The shirt is designed to be oversized, but I’m always picky about how things fit on the shoulder (want me to say shoulder one more time?) so for version two shaved a little bit off of the pattern right at the tip of the armhole so that the seam would sit a bit more where I wanted it to be.
I loved the pattern and was super duper happy with everything else – especially the fact that there’s no interfacing needed! Score.
I used this Atelier Brunette Sparkle Dots fabric in Powder Gold (sorry that it’s a bit creased, I’d been wearing it all day!) that I got in a remnants sale from Sew Over It – just about a metre for £7.50!
Luckily, I’m pretty diddy so I somehow managed to get the shirt out of that amount of fabric, with some altered grainlines and pretty much no scraps. The grainlines that I did move about didn’t affect the hang at all thank goodness, so that wasn’t a problem!
The pattern itself is really, really wonderful. The inside of the garment ended up really neat, with the double yoke hiding a load of seams and adding a touch of excitement to the inside so that it looks just as pretty as the outside. The collar is also really simple and doesn’t have a band or any tricky easing or interfacing, and you slipstitch it closed so that that seam’s hidden too.
The back of the shirt is equally as snazzy as the front, as long as you ignore the spammy bit of collar at the back of mine! It does look normal when you fold it right but neither me or mum (my photographer) noticed until I’d changed into my pyjamas and just couldn’t be bothered to get dressed again to take more photos, so we’ll all just have to ignore it.
The box pleat at the back is the only thing in the way of pleats or darts for the whole shirt, so is definitely for the aesthetics rather than fit, and I really like the effect that it gives! It is a bit awkward to iron, so I make sure that mum always gets this one when it comes to ironing…
I used these really delicate flower buttons that I got from my local haberdashery, which matched the fabric B E A UTIFULLY! The rose gold detailing matched the metallic gold spots, and the pinks were exactly the same shade. I was pretty chuffed about that, because I’d bought the buttons and cotton weeks apart from each other! I think that they add a really cool contrast to the oversized fit of the shirt, and sort of in a weird way gives me more ways to wear it if that makes sense? I have the choice of dressing it down with just jeans and a beanie without it looking too dressy as the bagginess makes it casual, but I can also wear it tucked into a cute skirt with proper movie-star 1950s makeup and wear it to a dinner out. Wonderful!
I hope you enjoyed my review of the Alex Shirt from Sew Over It City Break, made from the super duper Atelier Brunette ‘Sparkle Spots’ fabric! As a parting gift, here’s the moment I tripped over my foot while we were taking photos. Enjoy!