09 10


Sunday, 30 October 2016

Scotty's Tiger Liberty Shirt

I've been hankering after making this shirt for ages. I woke early this morning, and, with my usual Sunday long run buddy away, and myself very clearly wide awake in a house full of fast asleep family, I quickly decided today would be the day for making a new shirt.

One of the lovely things about my return to work has been the opportunity to dress a bit smarter, and, being someone with a love of making my own clothes, to make a few new ones. I made a few items before term started, but haven't found time to do much sewing since - I've been understandably busy with my return to teaching after a decade away. Initial nerves are well behind me - I'm nowhere near as good as I'd like to be yet, but, I'm loving being back in a school setting, and it's down to me to keep chipping away until I'm back at match fitness as far as classes of teenagers are concerned.

A handful of colleagues have picked up on my handmade clothing habit, and I can't lie - it is nice to have someone say something nice about your clothes, and then look impressed when you admit that yes, you made it.

My biggest reason to love making stuff is that you can imagine something in your head and turn it into a garment. I bought this Liberty lawn print about a year ago - it caught my eye and makes me smile when I look at it. It set me back the standard £50 - I have made a couple of pairs of undies (yes, really) and this shirt. Like an addict, I don't even flinch at the price now - it feels beautiful to the touch, and I know from experience that it will still be looking amazing after years of washing.

There is not much to say about the construction of this, my sixth Granville shirt. I used flat felled seams -I'd like to say this was because I took my mum's opinion in hand on the proper way to make shirts. It was actually because my overlocker is currently threaded with black, and I couldn't be bothered to switch to white. I'm pleased with my pattern matching, too. I may have already played in my mind the scene of Patrick and Esme (but mainly Patrick) fondling this fabric and commenting on how nicely those tigers are lined up on the button band. Shame on me.

With half term making the girls prone to sleeping in a bit, I got a couple of hours of blissful cutting out and prepping done, with nothing but Radio 4 and a mug of tea for company, before one by one the cherubs discovered my hiding place (I'd closed the kitchen door, in the hope of extending my alone time). The rest of the making was more of a multi tasking kind - playing Monopoly (my involvement, however slack, is essential for peace-keeping purposes) and occasional puzzle assistance to the youngest.

I'll enjoy wearing this new shirt for work later this week. By the way, I still hold to my opinion that being a parent is harder than being a teacher. You get to leave your worst class behind you at the end of the lesson, but those outnumbered dinner times when the gang are not on good form can drag you down precisely because you know they are yours forever. And don't get me started on Monopoly.

Oh, and, for those who have been kind enough to ask. Yes, there are some shiny new courses to accompany this post, now open for booking.


  1. Glad you have settled back into work and are enjoying the challenges of teaching teenagers again. So you have the double challenge of being a parent and teacher! Great to have some nice new garments to wear at work too.
    What a lovely shirt - got to love that Liberty quality!

  2. Another beautiful Granville :) I'm so glad the transition back to work has gone okay - let me know if you're ever up for another wander down Goldhawk Road x

  3. Oh, that pattern matching. You are rightfully proud. So glad you have happily settled back into school. I do miss the being part of a community I felt when a teacher... obviously not enough though to persuade me to go back! Happy teaching and squeezing in sewing when you can!