Colette Negroni Shirt,

Super Online Sewing Match Round Four | The Colette Negroni Men’s Shirt

The Colette Negroni Mens Shirt, Super Online Sewing Match

***Meet the Mister***

Oh boy!  I made it to the fourth round in the Super Online Sewing Match.  And {drum roll}…it’s the menswear challenge!   It was with a mixture of excitement and trepidation that I began work on the Colette Negroni.  Men’s shirts are inherently simple looking, but in their simplicity, leave little room for error.  I’d like to say that things went smoothly with nary a bump in the road, but alas, I hit a roadblock before even beginning to sew.  I’ll tell you about it, but let me first assure you that once I got rolling again, the Colette Negroni pattern did not disappoint.  I’m looking forward to sewing it again.  Okay, onward to photos.  It wasn’t super easy to photograph this fabric.  Getting the top stitching and flat felled seams to show up was a challenge.  Some of the photos are smaller to try and lessen the gingham vibration.  My eyes are now a wee wonky, so proceed with caution.  I have added extra written information so you can better understand what you are viewing.


The Colette Negroni Mens Shirt, Super Online Sewing Match

Back View, centre back pleat with fabric loop.

The Colette Negroni Mens Shirt, Super Online Sewing Match
Front view, collar, long sleeves

The Colette Negroni Mens Shirt, Super Online Sewing Match

This view shows the left sleeve placket, inside cuff, and pocket.  Pocket has an inverted pleat, and although it’s difficult to see, the ‘X’ detail on the placket is sewn onto the pocket also.

The Colette Negroni Mens Shirt, Super Online Sewing Match

This photo is of the right sleeve placket and cuff, and a close up view of the pocket towards the right of the photo.  

Left photo is a view of the inside and outside of machine stitched hem.
Right photo is an outside view of flat felled seams at underarm.


Left photo is of inside flat felled seam along side seam.

Right photo shows the inside flat felled seam on the armhole at the yoke.

The Fabric, The Inspiration, & The Pattern

The fabric is a 100% cotton in a small gingham check.  Additionally, I used a small amount of accent fabric, also 100% cotton.  My inspiration was my husband.  Glen wears two kinds of shirts…Hawaiian inspired shirts in crazy, fun prints in summer, and stand up collared shirts the rest of the year.  So what do I sew?  Version two of the Negroni is a sure thing for a casual Hawaiian style shirt.  It has the short sleeves, the camp style collar, and an easy relaxed vibe.  Version one, with long sleeves, has more of the challenges I want to sew; specifically the cuffs and the sleeve plackets.  I decide to sew version one and alter it by adding a stand up collar and front placket.  I fret that I have strayed too far from the original pattern, but I know that this style of shirt will not be a miss with the mister.   I made the pattern adjustments with the help of my trusty Vogue Sewing book, copyright 1975.     

Variations on a Design

Added collar stand and collar with collar stays.
Altered front placket.

The Colette Negroni Mens Shirt, Super Online Sewing MatchClose-up view of the collar stand and under collar.  The under collar is made with two pattern pieces  sewn together and has slots for removable collar stays.  

Front Placket, buttonholes, and buttons.

A close-up photo of the front placket, mother of pearl button, 
machine stitched buttonholes, and collar. 


Inside collar stand and stitched detail on inside yoke.  This view also shows the inside of the left front placket and the inside of the right facing.


The Colette Negroni Mens Shirt, Super Online Sewing Match

The Challenges

The FIT!  I had a challenging time getting this pattern to fit the mister.  The shoulders are designed for a square shouldered dude, and it was pulling and hanging all kinds of wrong on Glen.  The bottom of the yoke was quite slanted and bunched at the armhole.  I ended up making the yoke smaller at the sleeve end, which really helped with the hang of the shirt.  Unfortunately, that left me with a teeny yoke, and the challenge of making the sleeve fit. Logic suggested that if the yoke was 1-1/2″ smaller, then the sleeve needed to be 1-1/2″ smaller as well.  I  made several attempts at reworking the sleeve head, but it became apparent that a smaller sleeve was not the answer.  Each time I resewed the muslin, I was faced with the same problem…not enough ease in the sleeve.  That may be okay if you never have to move your arm up…no driving, no TV remote clicking, and no beer drinking!  Yikes!  I had to keep the sleeve the same measurement, and somehow add 1-1/2″ back to either the front, back, or yoke pattern piece.  What worked?  I added 1″ to the bottom of the yoke,  drawing a line at right angles to the centre back fold.  I added 1/2″ to the top sleeve edge of the back pattern piece, again drawing a line at right angles to the centre back fold.  And, it worked!  In the end, it was more about redistributing the fabric as opposed to taking it out.  I think the shirt has a very nice silhouette now.  No weird pulling and bunching at the arms.  Whew!  I also moved the back shoulder pleats into a single pleat at the centre back.  This small tweak also helped.

The Colette Negroni Mens Shirt, Super Online Sewing Match
Sleeves rolled up, under cuff peaking through.

In The End 

Well, for whatever reason I was more anxious about this challenge than the previous ones.   Initially, I had the challenge of fitting the pattern, I was uncertain how my revised design would go over with the judges, and I was nervous about having my  buttonholes scrutinized at close range.   Hopefully, it’s all been just over-thinking on my part.  Once I got the fit correct and I began sewing, I felt better, and things progressed methodically and without problems.  The instructions were easy to follow, and I really liked the pattern piece for the sleeve placket.  I think I’ve been able to turn out a well tailored shirt.  We’ve got two thumbs up on this end…I am pleased with the outcome, and so is Glen.  We are just four contestants and soon to be three.  Next week, I’m off to the PNE, Vancouver’s annual summer fair.  When I see the old wooden roller coaster, I will think,  ‘Yup, that’s me this summer!  It’s a wild ride I’m on, I’m having a ball, and I’m thrilled to being sharing the ride with you!’  Thanks for all your sweet and encouraging comments!   And special thanks to Glen for agreeing to appear on my blog.  I’m very hopeful to be going on to the final round of the Super Online Sewing Match! 

Linking up with:

Heather at Feather’s Flights for: You Flew Tuesday Sewing Link Up


  • Reply Flo August 18, 2013 at 4:47 am

    Very nice! And FYI–I did see the stitching on the pockets on my screen, so you should be good. I like the contrast fabric you chose, how fun. And collar stays–haven't seen those on a shirt in a long time. I do have to say that every time you post the photos for these projects, I am more and more impressed with your sewing talents, you pay so much attention to details that a lot of people wouldn't even think about. Your print matching is phenomenal!! That is something that drives me nuts with commercially made clothing 😉

  • Reply Mary August 18, 2013 at 5:28 am

    Beautifully conceived, sewn, and photographed! Good luck this round! I really enjoy following your journey.

  • Reply thequirkypeach August 18, 2013 at 6:17 am

    WOW! This is amazing! Totally professional level – the up-close pictures are quite impressive 😉 Way to go 🙂 Love your print-matching!

  • Reply amy mayen August 18, 2013 at 8:18 am

    You are so brave…menswear is tough! I love your accent fabric Sue..and Glen is handsome indeed! You amaze me each week! I think you are one of those people who thrives under pressure and does well being pushed outside of their comfort zone. A beautiful job once again!

  • Reply Jo-Anne August 18, 2013 at 9:20 am

    Well done Sue!! Gorgeous fabrics and exquisite workmanship. I'm impressed. Love the colour combination.

  • Reply Val Sparkle August 18, 2013 at 9:36 am

    Sue, you continue to amaze and impress! I just love the contrasting liner fabric and the way you kept it symmetrical at the neck, and used it for the little extra yoke lining. All the stitches and detailing are stunningly perfect, and the shirt looks so crisp and smart. The thing that really sends me over the top is the way you used the bias to make the fabric loop at the back!!! I bet Mr. Sue is very proud to wear this shirt!

    The PNE looks like fun. If I hadn't just come back from a trip I'd drive up to meet you there!

  • Reply MaeveM August 18, 2013 at 11:32 am

    Very Nice! You have done a wonderful job on this shirt – it is just perfect!

  • Reply Marla Robinson August 18, 2013 at 11:55 am

    That shirt is amazing. I always look forward to seeing your creations.

  • Reply Ellen August 18, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    Handsome! Great details and fabric choices!

  • Reply Shirl August 18, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    Ahhh, this shirt is Glen worthy. Very nice contrasting fabric. I am so impressed with the amount of “figuring things out” for these projects you have done…..Now, onto the last round!


  • Reply Emalina August 18, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    They're really making you work hard for this competition, but you're excelling every step of the way! Like Shirl I love the contrasting fabric.

  • Reply Titanium Woman August 18, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    OMG, this shirt is truly amazing!! You are such a good sewer and sew creative!! I love following this competition and your blog. Thank you.

  • Reply Trina August 18, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    I am simply breathless. This shirt looks like it just came off the rack at Nordstrom's, seriously! You are amazing, to say the least. Love the choice of fabric, the gingham and paisley are just splendid together and the colors are incredible. You are my hero! I'm so thrilled for you and so grateful that we all get to see your amazing talent.

  • Reply pastcaring August 19, 2013 at 2:16 am

    Oh my goodness, Cousin Sue! You are so incredibly good at this! The shirt is a triumph, and as usual, it's the details and the care you have taken with them which really impress. The contrasting cuff and collar fabric, the collar stays, the loop at the back, these are lovely touches. I think Glen looks like a very contented (not to mention stylish!) model! Good luck for the competition. xxxxx

  • Reply shams August 19, 2013 at 4:33 am

    That is a beautiful man's shirt! And just enough fun detailing for your Hawaiian loving shirt guy to enjoy in private.

  • Reply lattegirl40 August 19, 2013 at 7:49 am

    Wow!! Just fantastic!! Would never attempt this in a million years!! you rock!

  • Reply Erin || August 19, 2013 at 7:57 am

    Sue, you never cease to wow me! This shirt is perfect!

  • Reply Cindy August 19, 2013 at 8:58 am

    Holy Crap! Didn't think you could out do your tote – but WOW. Your perfection amazes me, and Glen – you look completely dashing wrapped in Sue's lovely work of art! Keep goin' kid! You're knocking them dead!!

  • Reply Kelli Ward August 19, 2013 at 9:21 am

    this looks really amazing. Great job. i am especially impressed by your collar stays. what an awesome idea and professional results.

  • Reply Dk's Wife August 19, 2013 at 11:51 am

    It is awesome. You done such a wonderful job on the shirt.

  • Reply popcosmo August 19, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    Amazing! You are super talented and this shirt looks, well, custom-made! He is one lucky MR!! I adore the detail inside the cuff and collar. Only a custom shirt could have such a wonderful personalized touch. What an amazing competition and you are rocking it. I definitely need to follow along in your progress!!! Congrats!
    xo ~kim & chloe

  • Reply sabine August 19, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    Sue the shirt is great! I love the different pattern at the inner cuff and at the shirt collor – that makes it unique. Keep it up!
    Sabine xxx

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:32 pm

    Thanks Flo! And thanks for letting me know that you are able to see the details.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    Thank you Mary. It was fun photographing my husband for a change!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:34 pm

    Aw, thank you so much Quirky Peach!

    PS I love peaches so very much! One of my favourite fruits, :).

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    Thanks Amy. It's true that I want to do show my best work, and it's true that there is some pressure brewing around these challenges, LOL.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:37 pm

    Thank you so much Jo-Anne. My two fabrics came from different parts of the store. When I saw them together, I said, 'Yup, this is the match I want.'

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    Thanks Val!! I used so little of the contrasting fabric, I was able to play around with the symmetry of the fabric. Thanks for noticing!

    Maybe next year for the fair?

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    Thank you very much Maeve! I appreciate your comment.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    Aw, thanks Marla so much.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Thank you Ellen, I appreciate your comment!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Hey, thanks Shirl. Yes, two days of wait and see now…

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    Thank you Emalina…they are putting us to task, and everyone is really doing well. Thanks for the encouragement!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    Thank You for following along. Cute comment about being sew creative!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    Aw, thank you lovely Trina!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    Hee hee, cousin Curtise has a nice ring to it. Ah, the delights of meeting blogging friends that could be relations! Thanks for the best wishes. xoxox

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    Thanks Shams…yup, the mister agrees that the details are just right…although he does want a Hawaiian style shirt as soon as I can sew one up.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    Thank you dear lattegirl!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    Thanks so much Erin!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:44 pm

    Ha Ha…Thanks for the encouragement!! I do appreciate the enthusiasm.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    Aw, thanks so much for popping by Kelli! I'm honoured to be sewing along with you.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    Thank you so very much for taking the time to comment. It means a lot to me.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    Thanks both Kim and Chloe. Isn't he the lucky mister.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 19, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    Thank you Sabine! I wanted to do a little something to make it one of a kind!

  • Reply August 19, 2013 at 5:49 pm

    Wow! Simply wow. The attention to detail just on matching the gingham is incredible. Everything matches perfectly! And you're a special seamstress to be able to adjust the pattern to “the customer”. That takes skill and experience to make it work. He looks like he could go from the office to drinks after work in this shirt. Very, very nicely done!

  • Reply The Style Crone August 20, 2013 at 5:08 am

    This amazing shirt looks great on your handsome husband. I love the details. Hoping for your participation in the final round!

  • Reply Marjorie N. August 20, 2013 at 6:35 pm

    Such talent, Sue; so stylish & handsome Glen!

  • Reply Tamera Beardsley August 20, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    My dear Sue… I am in utter awe of your diligent craftsmanship. Having grown up with a mother who not only sewed… but our family also owned a fabric store… and having spent many years sewing myself … your level of perfected craftsmanship leaves me dropped jawed.

    i love visiting your blog… not only to see your stunning work… but for the glimpses into your light filled soul.


  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 20, 2013 at 9:58 pm

    Thank you for the lovely comment Grammy! My husband was very patient with fittings which was a big help!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 20, 2013 at 9:58 pm

    Thanks for the good wishes Judith!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 20, 2013 at 10:00 pm

    Hey Marjorie!!! Thanks for popping in to say Hi.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas August 20, 2013 at 10:02 pm

    Dearest Tamera, your kind words have touched me deeply. Thank You. xo

  • Reply Imogen August 21, 2013 at 12:14 am

    You are truly impressive and incredible. I actually always thought a men's shirt would be extremely difficult to sew because of all the sections and components…. If its anything like ironing a shirt, it must be extremely challenging. Looks wonderful and what a fabulous model!!! Totally knows what he's doing.

  • Reply dan August 21, 2013 at 2:20 am

    Once more I am impressed seeing your ability, Sue. Making a man skirt isn' t an easy task!
    And what a great care for details!! My compliments also to the Mister. . . he is a perfect model!

  • Reply Wendy August 21, 2013 at 2:30 am

    WOW!!!! Sue my jaw just hit the floor- this blouse is flawless! You have some serious skills!

  • Reply Lynn Dylan August 21, 2013 at 5:47 am

    You did not make this. Right? I mean, WOW!!! My hat is off to you girl, you go ahead on and sew!!!! You are amazing. This is flawless, perfect, and I love it!! XOXO Lynn

  • Reply Lynn Dylan August 21, 2013 at 5:50 am

    PS — the mister is pretty cute! I guess he deserves some attention too for being brave and going on a blog. 🙂

  • Reply Anonymous August 21, 2013 at 8:41 am

    Sue, I just saw the results on the sewmamasew website. I have to say I think they made a mistake! Your shirt was my favorite!

  • Reply Ariane Lasalle August 21, 2013 at 8:57 am

    What an awesome job, that must have been some challenge to get the fit right!
    I love the pattern and love the little details, this is what makes men's fashion, little details
    I wonder if Mr D will appear one day on my blog
    We are getting married next May or so – Hopefully he will appear on my blog when we get married, that is special enough to appear on my blog, don't you think –
    The cats are behaving extraordinary well!


    Ariane x0

  • Reply Nicole August 21, 2013 at 8:58 am

    I know it must have been a difficult decision for the judges, but I'm completely shocked that you didn't make it through to the finals! Seriously, I had pegged you all along as the winner! Your shirt (and everything else you've made) was absolutely impeccable.

  • Reply Suzanne Carillo Style Files August 22, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    I simply cannot believe you sewed an man's shirt! To me that has to be one of THE hardest things next to a complete suit. I love the touches of flare in the cuffs and behind the neck. Very Robert Graham.

    I also cannot believe you didn't make it through to the finals. I know you would have loved to have that new sewing machine.

    You are a sewing genius in my book.

    Thanks for the kind thoughts on my blog : )


  • Reply Heather Feather September 4, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    It totally looks store-bought! That's amazing! I have made a men's shirt and understand how much work and precision goes into one! I am so impressed, and the funky linking is the perfect touch!

  • Reply Pam @Threading My Way September 12, 2013 at 12:55 am

    Looks so professionally sewn!!! Very impressive!!!

  • Reply Merche Martinez October 23, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    Hello! I´m so impressed with this one! I have that Negroni pattern but I´m so scared of it…or of sewing for my husband who is not very picky style-wise but pust comfort and wearability first. I wish I could make one just as pretty as yours!…Well, his!

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