His & Hers Camp Shirts


Mr. AFS and myself had this grand idea of going camping this summer. This is not to say that we’ve never been camping, but going and leaving the shop is/was a big deal. I thought it would be all the more grand if I made camp shirts for the occasion. And only give myself a week to do this. Keep in mind we had muslins, fitting, alterations and plaid matching to do here, to say nothing of sewing the shirt and all that that entails. But If there was ever a call for flannel, its camping. If there was ever a call for plaid, camping is just the ticket. The awesome thing in all of this is that the mister here abhores plaid. Can you believe this? Can you believe that this man is married to a woman with a slight fetish for plaid and he hates it? I told Mr. AFS that it was possible that I could get some houndstooth flannel instead and he nearly had a heart attack. Would not stand for “houndstooth.” Heavens no! Now it was plaid or go home. So we went with plaid. Sheesh!



Well after all that emotional turmoil, I picked out some plaid cotton flannel, a sewing pattern for me and for him and went about sewing these things up. His is Simplicity 1544 and this pattern is a winner. Not too many troubles really. I made a muslin and found that the armpit was little high for Mr. AFS and he needed a bit more room in the upper back. Shortened the sleeve by a few inches too and then we hit gold. For myself, I used McCall’s 6649. This pattern actually came with a Craftsy class that I am working my way through and loving! I thought that in the process of fitting this pattern and getting all the kinks out, I would go ahead and make it up a few times. This is the first make and I still have a few kinks to go. Interestingly enough, I don’t usually get all the kinks out until about the 3rd time. That’s really just the way it goes. I mean, I don’t know if that is the way for everyone, but I tinker until I’m perfectly happy and then I make a permanent copy and blah blah blah. Someday I’ll bore you with that process. For now, you should know about this Craftsy class though. The idea is that you take this pattern, fit it and then reverse engineer it so that it is put back in sloper form! From there you create all these different tops/blouses. So much fun! Definitely recommend. To anyone.


OK, so enough of that. I had the same beefs with my pattern as my mister did with his. I increased the upper back width, though I’m going to do a little more as I don’t think I did enough and then goodness gracious, I had to take like 3 inches off the sleeve length. I feel I may have overdone this part a bit, but when my arm is at rest the sleeve hangs precisely where it’s supposed to. There are more kinks to work out here, but I’ll save those for next round’s roundup.


Being on a timetable for these shirts and as any good procrastinator would, I put these off until the last minute. The night before we left on the camping trip I was still doing buttonholes and attaching buttons. So these felt a bit rushed. Barring that, I’m surprised they turned out as well as they did. The plaids are matched pretty well and I feel I did a pretty good job with navigating the bias pieces too. Overall these were pretty successful. Mr. AFS wore his and loved it! He’s never worn or owned a plaid shirt in his life, so this is serious people. Mine turned out pretty good too. I did manage to cut a hole in mine. Don’t ask me how that worked or even how I did it because I have no idea. But I patched/mended it and now my shirt has character if nothing else. Sigh….


The idea was to get pictures of us actually camping in the shirts. But wouldn’t you know, it rained. And it rained. And it rained. We cut the trip short because of all this rain. I know. All the work of making these shirts and we weren’t able to get j.crew perfect pics of the event. Such is my luck! Ha!

At least there’s flannel for the next camping trip, or possibly some romantic getaway in the near possible future. I almost went matching plaid shirts. We might still have to do that. With some line dancing and cowboy boots for fall. Plaid flannel = true love!


46 thoughts on “His & Hers Camp Shirts

  1. Holes are okay in camp wear! Both shirts look great, and must be so cozy! I ran into JoAnn for some thread the other day, and saw a whole shelf full of soft plaid flannels. If cutting there weren’t such an ordeal I’d have a copycat shirt in the works!

    1. Yes, this is where I got the flannel. Unfortunately, we don’t carry a lot of flannels (or any really….) at my shop, so I had to go to Joann for this. These were surprisingly, very nice and lofty. They make for a toasty warm flannel shirt, that’s for sure.

  2. well i hope the mister has come to appreciate how awesome plaid is, because i’m having a hard time wrapping my head around someone not liking plaid! what?! but seriously, these shirts turned out great. bummer that your vacation was washed out though!

  3. Fabulous camping wear and I cannot believe the Mr. does not like plaid. Sorry it rained on your trip but I am sure you two were the best dressed campers there.

    1. Yes! Elephants! Actually its a vintage rayon scrap that I still have a little bit left of. I use it from time to time for little pieces like what you see on the shirts here. Oh my goodness – elephants! I love this fabric so much!

  4. Looking good! And wow, two plaid shirts in a week? I’m such a sucker for coordinated outfits… I say go for matching next time now that the mister is a plaid convert!

  5. You and your shirts look great! That last photo really captures some well deserved shirt making pride. Glad to hear you took a little break, sorry it rained, though!

  6. Your shirts look great! I think button-down shirts are particularly satisfying to sew for some reason. I love plaid now but I did have a plaid recovery period after wearing a kilt as part of my Catholic school uniform.

  7. These are so cool. I love that you’ve made them together and that photo of you two holding hands….so lovely. If you haven’t printed that out to frame you really should. Lovely…erm, sorry I’m being soppy…sewing, right, yes – LOVE the pockets on both shirts, that boxy pleat thing on them on the yellow and the flap and perfect top line on the blue. So glad all that work was appreciated despite being plaid 🙂 (I love plaid, I wear plaid on plaid like people wear double denim)

  8. Love ’em! Especially with you letting out your inner patchworker on the stands and plackets and all, something I can’t resist either. Really blasts these shirts out of LLBean/Cabela’s country without revoking the hunting/fishing/camping license:)

    Funny how “camp” shirts don’t nec. have “camp” collars, isn’t it? I saw the post title and got all prepared for some convertible-collared shirts… Different camps, I guess. Nice!

    1. Ah yes, you are right. I actually had completely forgotten about camp shirt collars. Those actually probably would have fared a bit better than the collar/collar band with this thick flannel.

  9. I had a hankering for a plaid flannel shirt last year and have a bear of a time finding any ready made for my long arms and torso. I Picked out two surprisingly nice cotton flannels from Joanns (a black watch and another with creams, red & black). I got the shirt 75% done and after a tussle with setting in the sleeves, buried it in my chair of sewing projects and completely forgot about it! I cleaned off the chair last month (realizing i should use chairs for sitting, not storing fabric and notions) and was bewildered by this mangy scrap of green/blue flannel. Now that it’s almost fall, I need to finish my flannel shirt finally. I’m disappointed in my plaid matching. I cut in a single layer but wasn’t super careful and it’s off a little under the arms.

    I love that Simplicity pattern. I want to try out some non-selfish sewing sometime. For myself, I hunted down a vintage McCalls to make a plaid 49er. I’ve owned the real thing in the past, but they don’t work well with long arms so custom is the way to go. I even went so far as buying some Pendleton wool plaid from their ebay store…Fall 2014 goal: Finish some plaid!

  10. These are called “flannos” in Australia and I make them almost on a production line basis for son and husband (and even me) to wear glamping (too old for camping). Mine aren’t quite as beautiful as yours though. Happy camping!!

  11. Oh, Sunni, I bought that Craftsy class too. I keep meaning to ask the teacher something… Is she related to you? Does she come from somewhere close to you? I haven’t watched your zipper tutes for a while but when I’m not looking at the screen, I swear it’s you speaking! But then what do I know, I’m Aussie!!

  12. A+++ on plaid matching!!! I love the Y on his upper back to down the center of the shirt. And you’ve even got the plaid horizontally to match across the body and both sleeves. Wow. You NEVER find that in RTW! You did an amazing job and bravo on the placket and collar stand alternative fabric choices. So chic! I’m enrolled in like nearly 30 Craftsy classes (seriously) and I’ve skipped over that one because I’ve never, ever successfully made a shirt so I’m intimidated.

    BTW…what is a “sloper”? I keep hearing/reading the term and I don’t know what it is.

    1. Ah, a sloper is a basic pattern. Quite literally I think it means a pattern that “matches the natural slopes of the body.” It’s basically what a fitting shell looks like but without seam allowances. And it’s a basis from which other patterns are made in flat pattern drafting. Hopefully that gives you a starting point!

  13. I bought that craftsy class too! I haven’t watched the whole thing yet and I’m still waiting on my pattern but I’m really disappointed that she didn’t spend even a few minutes explaining how to fit your muslin and just references other craftsy classes. Especially when the description says that fitting is covered.

    1. Oh really! I didn’t read that. To be honest Anna, fitting is such an overwhelming topic that the class would have been way too long to include such information. Also, I just looked at the class description on Craftsy and I didn’t seen anything about fitting mentioned for the class. I’m not trying to single you out, I’m just trying to say that the class is actually really good for what it is and that’s a pattern drafting class, not a fitting class.

      1. It’s in the description for lesson 1, it talks about testing the fit with a muslin. I agree that fitting is a huge topic, but it seems like a waste of a lesson to explain how to make a muslin without spending a few minutes on how to recognize a good fit. I’m not asking how to fix the fit but just things to look for I guess. It seems like a good class otherwise (so far, I’m only through the second lesson).

  14. Very cute and excellent attention to detail… Matching plaids… Balanced patterns… Fun fabric on inside of neck bands… Camp in the living room if it rains too much in the mountains. Enjoy!

  15. I love a good plaid shirt! Can’t beleive he’s never actually worn one before :O these look really great, and now I wanna make my own plaid/flannel top!

  16. This is actually a comment in relation to your indie shop post (I couldn’t figure out how to post there) but I’m wondering if you’re considered leveraging your online shop to sell your fabric inventory. Whenever Colette or Sewaholic or Gertie package a pattern, notions and appropriate yardage, they sell like hotcakes. Maybe you could feature a finished item of yours with a sewalong and kit? Your online presence is probably reaching deeper than your local customers.

  17. I love these, but they were nice and cozy with all that rain. I rather love a plaid flannel shirt. I had a RTW one that I literally wore until it fell to bits. Perhaps I should think about copying your idea!

  18. These are fabulous shirts!! I have made many plaid shirts, but it has been a long time ago, when it was the Beach Boys era and we lived at the beach, and my baby brother was too narrow in the shoulders for a cool shirt, so I bet I made him a dozen, 2 were wool. And never for myself, interesting… Now I should think about making them for my hubby. With the muslin first. The only things I have made for him so far were failures in terms of fit. Should have made a muslin….

  19. ok, you guys are just the cutest couple. love these. now go camping!
    ps, my family is in utah so i am out there about once a year. i gotta come to the shop and meet you next time im i town.

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