Facebook Email Pinterest Twitter X Instagram Tiktok Icon YouTube Icon Headphones Icon Favorite Navigation Search Icon Forum Search Icon Main Search Icon Close Icon Video Play Icon Indicator Arrow Icon Close Icon Hamburger/Search Icon Plus Icon Arrow Down Icon Video Guide Icon Article Guide Icon Modal Close Icon Guide Search Icon

Threads Project Guides

Fit & Sew Tops

Guide Home

Sign in or become an insider to access this story

Sign In

Add Stylish Details to a Shirt

Threads magazine - 175 - Oct./Nov. 2014

I’ve fallen in love with the shirt. I adore the smart look of it, whether it’s soft or crisp or patterned or plain. I’m eager to see fine shaping and creative closures. A shirt is the perfect setting for various stylish details, and you’ll see a collection of them in this article.

I worked with the new Simplicity Threads 1279 pattern to showcase delightful elements you can add to the shirts you sew. From the beginning, plan your finishing features. Carefully select the fabrics you’ll use, with thought to the sewing details you want to add. Consider a contrasting collar and cuffs;  add hidden touches; combine textures; or mix dressy and casual fabrics.

Make decisions about the nature of your topstitching, button possibilities, and even closure options. Then enjoy the compliments every time you wear the shirt.

Master the topstitching

There are many places on a shirt where multiple seams converge, especially around the neckline and cuff. This is where, for example, double layers of collar, yoke, collar band, and placket come together. The seam allowances double the bulk. Various forms of topstitching keep all of these layers behaving as they should.


Edgestitching is sewn close to the garment seams or edges, often as soon as they are constructed. This way, the stitching terminates beyond a seam intersection. The secret to sewing edgestitching close to the edge is using the right presser foot. Choose an edgestitching foot or blind-hem foot, which contains a vertical blade that glides easily along the edge or seamline. Move the needle position one click to the right or left of center, depending on the position of the edge. Set the stitch length to 1.5 mm to 2.0 mm. Threads contributing editor Louise Cutting uses size 30 or 50, 100-percent cotton…

Start your 14-day FREE trial to access this story.

Start your FREE trial today and get instant access to this article plus access to all Threads Insider content.

Start Your Free Trial
Previous: Better Machine-Made Buttonholes Next: Creating a Beautiful Shirt Hem


  1. Raumati | | #1

    Your link to article is showing the html source code.

  2. Evamarie | | #2

    Raumati: Which link are you referring too?

    Evamarie Gomez
    Web Producer

  3. dsantil71 | | #3

    I tried downloading it 3 times. It said there was an error with the file. I have downloaded 2 pdfs this morning with already with no problems. The ext to the file was .pdf but it was only 30kb big. That seemed pretty small to me.
    I'm pretty tech savvy but I will take any help I can get.

  4. whoneedlesthis | | #4

    Kenneth, that is a great article on "surgeons cuffs", (I did know the origin of the word already),and I have a question. How does your method improve on the "extra length and width, mitered hem fold, traditional cuff?
    Just wondered, as shortening men's jacket sleeves is the bane of my existence as a tailoring specialist, trying to get everything lined back up again.
    Thanks for all the great articles in Threads, one more reason my subscription always gets renewed!

  5. User avater
    sewhidbey | | #5

    I really dislike the "We recommend" advertisements, which interrupt the content that I am paying for from Threads.
    Come on people, enough already!

Log in or become a member to post a comment.

Fit & Sew Tops

Fit & Sew Tops

Sew beautiful tops with tips from the experts

View Project Guide

View All Project Guides »

Become a member and get unlimited site access, including the Fit & Sew Tops Project Guide.

Start Free Trial

Basic Torso Adjustments
Bust Fitting
Sleeves and Shoulders
Construction Secrets: Collars, Yokes, Cuffs, Vents, Plackets
Make It Your Own