Here's the shirt I designed last week for my menswear patternmaking class at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT).
I drafted it from scratch to fit a men's Size 40 AlvaForm. The AlvaForm seems to be the new industry standard and likely contributed to the demise of the legendary Wolfform. The Alvaform women's forms are more voluptuous and the men's forms are more athletic looking. (More about Alvaforms here.)
Anyway, for our assignment, we were asked to draft a shirt pattern with multiple style lines. A style line is a seam that contributes to the style of the garment but not necessarily the fit. You might say all fitting seams are style lines (think princess seams) but not all style lines are fitting seams, if that makes sense. You're basically cutting a pattern into separate pieces, adding seam allowances (and notches), and sewing the pieces back together.
Our shirt cuff had to include four style lines (these could be intersecting, curved, straight, etc.) I originally designed a cuff with fancy swirls. When I tried to sew it, however, I quickly realized it would take much more time to assemble than I had available. So I created a more angular design (below) that was easier to sew. We had to sew the entire garment in muslin, but you can imagine that if I used one or two different contrasting or complementary colors, this cuff would be quite eye-catching.
The body of the shirt itself also had to include style lines, and these were to go through the entire shirt -- front, back, and sleeves (This particular shirt does not have a yoke.). Here's my original design.
In the end I didn't add bellows breast pockets (which looked too bulky when tested in my muslin so I substituted simpler ones) nor lower front pockets, which seemed to throw off the balance of the shirt. Across the front are two rows of horizontal tucks, 1/2" deep. These form narrow pocket flaps, with a button atop the flap at the center of the pocket.
If I were to tweak this design, I'd reshape the collar, which is bit too small, narrow the hidden button placket; and deepen the tucks to maybe 3/4". That's it.
In addition to sewing a complete shirt, we had to hand in the pattern. If the shirt front has two horizontal style lines like mine does, that splits the front into three pattern pieces (not including attached plackets). This also applies to the sleeves, back, etc. Every pattern pieces must be labelled, notched, include the grainline, garment size, etc.
When I was looking for inspiration related to men's shirts and style lines, I stumbled upon this Kenzo shirt from 2013.
To my eye, something looks very off here. The model's arms seem to be emerging from the middle of his chest, creating a penguin-like appearance. (Actually, it reminds me of that game you probably played as a child, where you sit on a friend's lap, wrap your arms around your back and pretend your friend's arms are your own -- hilarity ensues as he picks your nose, rubs your tummy, etc.)
QUESTION: Does this Kenzo design represent color-blocking gone awry, or do you like the look?
I'm a native New Yorker and sewing fanatic! I started sewing in 2009 and today make all my own clothes using vintage sewing machines and vintage patterns, in addition to sewing for private clients. Welcome to the warm and whimsical world of Male Pattern Boldness, where the conversation is sewing, style, fashion, fabric, and more!