Grainline Archer #2

(I got photobombed by my nephew, lol)

The Goal: I wanted to make, in my head, a safari style white buttondown. Something less dressy and more utilitarian than your standard white shirt. I had the fabric and pattern for awhile but I had yet to actually sew it.

The Pattern: Another Grainline Archer! After my first one I immediately dived into my second version. Love this pattern. I did a straight size 4 (this shirt isn’t very fitted, which I like, so no need for any major fit adjustments).


The Fabric: A white rayon challis from Super Textiles, a non-air conditioned warehouse in Dallas that sells fabrics on the cheap. I think this was $3 a yard. I also bought the little clear buttons there, if I remember correctly. If you’re ever in Dallas you should check it out.

The Changes: Ok, here’s where things got interesting. First, the pockets. By the time I cut out my pocket pieces the unthinkable happened. I ran out of spray starch. This rayon is super shifty. Luckily it tears so that helped me get some straight lines on the cross grain while cutting but for sewing this stuff doesn’t want to stay still. I cut these pockets about an inch shorter than the pattern piece and roughly 3.5 inches wider to accommodate the pleat.

I blame the shifty fabric for my mistake of sewing my pockets inside out. See, I intended for the box pleat to face out, instead I stitched them the other way and didn’t even notice until they had been sewn to the shirt. At that point I had sewn the pockets down a total of five different times because they would shift around as I stitched even with all the pins I owned trying to keep them in place. After the pocket-sewing-fiasco of 2014 I decided to leave them as is. While wandering around with my fam the other day I found myself staring at random people’s shirts to see if I could find pockets like mine to justify my mistake.

On a better note I also added these little tab thingies on the sleeves (I seriously do not know what these are called so I’ve just declared them tabs until I am corrected).

It took a little work to figure them out, I’m sure you’ve seen them before. They’re lengths of fabric stitched to the inside of the sleeve with a buttonhole on the free end. On the outside of the sleeve there’s a button attached so you can hook the tab to it and hold up the sleeve. A cool detail I think. And with the shifty fabric my rolled up sleeves tend to unroll themselves anyway.

Would anyone be interested in a tutorial for this? I figure I can’t do a tutorial for something I can’t even name, lol.

The Results: Yay, I have a white shirt! Versatile and cute. Goes with anything. Fits well. Super win!

  • A Stitching Odyssey

    It’s very breezy and fresh looking, love it Dixie! And your pockets look super cute, so I wouldn’t worry about them if I were you! Also, I would love a tutorial for the tab things, I love a shirt with them on!

  • DA E

    That looks amazing! Well done! Gorgeous.

    -dani e

  • This looks so comfy and like the perfect versatile piece. Can you tell me more about using spray starch on rayon? Do you soak it and let it dry, or just spray starch the pieces?

  • I’ve been wondering what the Archer looks like in white – really nice! And I would totally love a tutorial on the sleeve-tabby things, even if they remain unnamed. Please? 🙂

  • Jen

    Gorgeous shirt! And yes please to the tutorial 🙂

  • Virginia Rand

    I think the pockets look better like that, even if it isn’t the traditional way. Also, your nephew is very cute. 🙂

  • Meg

    Very nice! And I would totally call those things tabs. I have them on a number of my RTW blouses and they are great!

  • lisa g

    love this version! i have fabric for a white archer as well, can’t wait to get to it. love the tabs, i’ve thought of doing those sometime also. and your photo bomber is totally adorbs 🙂

  • Love this! The results are amazing and the little man’s posing skills are too adorable!

  • melanie

    Are they called epaulette?

  • You can never go wrong with a white shirt, and you haven’t here. It is great! I would love a tutorial for the sleeve tabs (I’ve always referred to them as tabs as I don’t know their real name) as I’m constantly rolling up my sleeves and this is a great but practical detail!

  • Laura

    I think they’re the same kind of things, but going across the shoulders.

  • Laura

    The pockets look cool. I hadn’t noticed that they were the wrong way round.

  • Diya r

    Looks very comfy..I too love loose fitting shirts .. I recently made a similar shirt form a pattern (dressmaking book) :).. Yet to post about it on my blog.. Who is the cute little child giving cute poses :)- Diya TheHobbyHarbor

  • Yay indeed! This is a great white shirt and I like the mistake on the pocket.

  • Out of Africa chic!

  • Camilla

    White shirts are the business. Your poses in the last photo are priceless. What a cute little guy.

  • sallieforrer

    Love it!! And love your photo pal! And those pockets? Design detail! You INVENTED that pocket!! And it looks pretty darn cool.

  • stephanie u.

    Awh, it’s SO versatile and cute! I really love those pockets.

  • thanks, yeah, back pleat success! i just gotta think about the things i got right 😉 and rayon challis is lovely to wear.

  • I like your attitude – design detail FTW!
    thanks 😉

  • Thanks, he just decided to wander over and stand behind me. Don’t know why he was looking all grumpy, though. He’s a cutie.

  • I thought that was the word for the shoulder tabs, the ones originally for military shirts to hold up sashes or something.

  • thanks, you know, i don’t think i’ve seen another white version out there. hmm.

  • Laura

    I love this shirt! I never would have known that the pockets were backwards if you hadn’t mentioned that. I would definitely appreciate a tutorial on the tabs. I always roll my sleeves, so I was trying to figure out how to incorporate them.

  • This is really cute! It looks perfect for warm weather! And OMG, your nephew is too adorable– he’s already got fashion posing down pat!

  • Johny

    really… cool. I would newer think that pockets could look this cool. NICE.

    Venus Puzzle