Thread Theory

Welcome to the new era of menswear sewing. Go ahead and create something exceptional!

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Rivets (and more!) sold individually and in bulk

ZippersRivets-001Ever since we added our Jeans & Pants Essential Notions kits to our shop, I’ve received requests from many of you who would like to purchase rivets in bulk or individually.  Until recently I’ve been making up Paypal invoices each time I received a request and this has worked okay…but it isn’t the most efficient or professional solution!  We made a new order of some of our notions so that we can finally offer the materials from our kits as separate products in our shop!NewNotions-008

Now you can find rivets, no sew jeans buttons, jeans zippers and waistband elastic in the supplies section of our shop!


While we are on the topic of new products: Some of you may have noticed that last Friday I accidentally sent our newsletter out with the title “Fall Sewing – Flat Rate Shipping Sale and New Tools.”  Upon opening and reading the newsletter you were probably disappointed to see that no new tools were mentioned!  We had planned to release some beautiful and very useful new sewing tools (including more wood ones from local artisan Wray Parsons!) but have been faced with some technical difficulties at our new studio.  Matt has been trying very hard to recreate the lighting that we had at our old studio so that our product photos match the rest that are currently on our website.  So far he has had no luck (and I’m a very critical client :S).  I’ve put up the photos that Matt took of the rivets, zippers and waistband elastic but we just couldn’t bring ourselves to share the less than ideal photos of our new sewing tools.  Matt will be working on a new photography set up next week and I hope we will be able to launch the tools soon!  Sorry for the false newsletter title!

Happy sewing!


Fall Preparations – $10 Flat Rate Shipping Sale!

FallSewing-001It has been very apparent in the sewing blogosphere of late that, despite the sunny weather, ripening tomatoes, and time spent at the beach, sewers of the Northern Hemisphere are turning their minds to Fall sewing plans.  My mind has been wandering in that direction lately as well so I am currently in the midst of gathering supplies for a few upcoming projects – fun!

To help you along with your Fall sewing plans, we are holding a flash sale featuring flat rate shipping.  For today, Saturday and Sunday only, shipping will be $10 for any size parcel to anywhere in the world!

This sale is the perfect opportunity to purchase those heavy or bulky things that you have been wishing to add to your shopping cart but have avoided due to higher shipping costs.  I hope that if you are in Canada, Europe, Australia and Asia you will take advantage of the flat rate because I know shipping rates can sometimes be prohibitive.  Matt and I are often shocked to see how much higher the shipping rates are for you compared to those lucky sewists in the US!  It bemuses us, especially, that it is far more expensive to ship within our own country (Canada) than to the far reaches of the United States.

Anyways, shipping woes aside, I hope that you enjoy the chance to stock up on Fall sewing patterns, fabric and tools without the worry of shipping rates!


Now, let me show you my Fall menswear sewing plans:


Before the weather cools, I’ll be making Matt some fresh Strathcona Henley t-shirts using these Anna-Maria Horner knits.  They are very stable which I like for a men’s t-shirt and I think the florals are just abstract enough to make them wearable (and unique) for Matt.


Next, I will be sewing some fresh Jedediah Pants and Shorts out of some really beautiful twills from Stylemaker Fabrics (the green is brushed and the grey is un-brushed).  You have to feel the brushed twills in person, they are SO soft and luxurious feeling and they are an excellent weight for pants.  I think they are just thick enough to make the belt loop layers manageable on most sewing machines.  The green twill will be a pair of shorts (likely featuring an aqua and green floral binding to complement the fabric and aqua zipper…we will see what prints I can find!).  The grey pair will be a nice basic pair of pants.


After these projects are finished I anticipate the weather will begin cooling so I will sew up a pair of rugged Jutland Pants for Matt to wear while chopping wood and working in the shop.  I haven’t quite decided whether I will sew the cargo pockets or not.  We will see which style Matt prefers just before I go to cut out the fabric!  The fabric is another brushed twill from Stylemaker in my favorite rusty orange color (I usually call this colour the ‘Carhartt colour’ but I could just as accurately call it the ‘Thread Theory’ colour since this is the colour from our logo!)


This beautiful dotted chambray will be a sample for our upcoming button up shirt pattern.  I mistakenly bought this forgetting that I was halfway through making a button up shirt for myself in the olive green colorway of this fabric…woops, I guess Matt and I will run the risk of matching :P.


Lastly, once I am in the full swing of sewing menswear, I’m going to launch in to tailoring a Goldstream Peacoat out of my most prized fabric possession – jet black wool from the Pendleton Woollen Mill store!  This fabric was gifted to me by the store when they began stocking our patterns – it was a surprise thank you gift when I sewed for them a sample of our Goldstream Peacoat.  So nice of them!  While my first version of the Peacoat headed straight to their store for display, I have had plans ever since to recreate it for Matt to wear!  I plan to follow our Tailored Peacoat Series for this project and Matt is very excited about the results!  Hopefully this coat will be ready for the frosts and potential snow in November or December.

So, what menswear projects do you have lined up for the Fall?  I hope you are able to take advantage of the Flat Rate Shipping Sale!  Happy daydreaming…


The ‘Truth’ Revealed about the Vintage Dior Suit

Thread Theory Dior Suit (5 of 15)

Now that Matt’s parents are back from their vacation, I’ve had a chance to ask for details about the vintage Dior suit that I shared on the blog two weeks ago.  It turns out there are two variations to the tale, you can decide which version you think has the ring of truth to it and which may just be made colorful by the passing of time and the flexibility of the memory!

Matt’s dad told me that he went into a little consignment shop in Vancouver in the early 1980s around the time when he and Sue purchased their first home.  They are currently a very stylish couple with an eye for unique clothing and I imagine Rick’s sense of style was at it’s peak while living in the big city!  Upon entering the consignment shop he found a huge load of fresh clothing that had been delivered that very morning.  The fresh pile was in the process of being sorted onto racks by the shopkeeper who told Rick that it was the entire contents of a judge’s wardrobe.  The wardrobe consisted of many beautifully tailored suits hailing from the long decades of this man’s distinguished career.

Thread Theory Dior Suit (7 of 15)

This is where the story breaks into alternate realities…just think of it as one of those “choose your own adventure” stories!

Reality 1: The retired judge had recently been discovered as having cheated on his wife of many decades.  She was a private and proud woman who chose to express her anger by getting rid of her husband’s most prized possessions – his designer suits.  Rather than throwing these suits out onto the lawn in that classic and very public gesture of disgust, she carefully drove down to the local consignment shop early the next morning and discreetly donated the wardrobe so that it might be enjoyed by future generations of suit enthusiasts.

Reality 2: The retired judge had enjoyed many happy years of golfing, dining and going to the opera with his wife after he ended his successful career.  He passed away peacefully at home and his wife promptly and tidily sorted through his will and arranged his funeral.  He had requested that his wife donate his designer suits rather than gift them to family because all of his sons were either larger than his narrow frame or did not have occasion in their lives to wear such formal attire.  He hoped that by donating the suits to a consignment shop, the suits might be picked up by someone who would care for them correctly and appreciate them for many decades to come.

Thread Theory Dior Suit (12 of 15)

As you can see, the story does not help us date the Dior suit very precisely (other than informing us that it was certainly created prior to 1983) but my father-in-law’s best guess is that it was likely from the 1960s or early 1970s just as the comment by ciclismodesign suggested in response to my previous blog post.

I also posted a photo of the suit on Instagram where sewklahoma_savvy commented:

I would say early 70s because this is when Hart, Schaffner joined with Dior to make tailored suits. I guess without the central heating we have today, men needed warmer suits. Beautiful!

Thread Theory Dior Suit (10 of 15)

Thanks for your thoughts on this vintage piece!  I hope that Matt will find occasion to wear it this winter.  And thanks, Rick, for gifting the suit to Matt, for finding such a great piece, for saving it for decades, and for telling us the suit’s story!


Sewing Indie Month is coming up!


It’s the second ever Sewing Indie Month this September!  If you haven’t heard about it yet, I will explain what this month is all about.  It is a month celebrating independent sewing pattern companies and the sewists who use them.  This celebration was begun last year by Mari of Seamster Patterns.  You may remember how I took part last year by offering a tutorial on the Tilly & the Buttons blog, interviewing the ladies at By Hand London, and publishing a tutorial from Seamster Patterns on my blog.  This year I decided just to enjoy the month rather than being involved behind the scenes because we were pretty busy moving homes and settling in.  Mari very kindly offered to include me in the blog post tour though so that I could take part in the sewing fun (but avoid all of the work!).

This year, for Sewing Indie Month, you can expect more collaborative blog posts, lots of tutorials and another sewalong contest with loads of prizes.

Sewing Indie Month is kicking off early this year by launching a pattern bundle sale featuring a pattern from each of the companies involved this year.  This first bundle is released early to give you lots of time to sew a few muslins before any of the contests begin.  The bundle will be on sale until August 12th (this coming Wednesday).  The pattern bundle is being offered as a “pay what you want” bundle and 20% proceeds will be donated to the International Folk Art Alliance.  This organization provides education and exhibition opportunities to folk artists around the world.  You can read more about the many projects this alliance is involved in here.

In order to purchase the bundle, you can head to the Sewing Indie Month HQ at Sew Independent.  You will notice that the bundle is tiered so, you can unlock extra patterns to add to your bundle by electing to purchase it for a certain price:


As you can see, the bundle is huge selection of varied and unique indie patterns including a few of my favorites such as Sew Over It’s Ultimate Trousers and Dixie DIY’s Bonnel Dress (perfect for the last month of summer!).  I think the entire set would make an excellent Fall wardrobe this year and it is also a great opportunity to try out a few indie pattern companies that you may not have sewn from before.  Patterns and their corresponding companies include:

If you haven’t yet heard of the Saltbox Top by Blueprints for Sewing or the Sorrel Dress & Top by Seamster, this is because these are brand new pattern releases that are currently only offered within the bundle.  Both would make lovely tops to go with the Ultimate Trousers or the Cressida Skirt!


I decided to sew the Mississippi Ave Dress by Sew House Seven to pair with this blog post – I hadn’t heard of Sew House Seven before and I thought that their dress design was very unique and pretty.  It looked like a quick project (which was necessary to convince me to leave my veggie gardening efforts and step into the sewing room at last!).  It has been really hot here at night so I sewed up the pattern as a cool cotton night dress.


I used a a rich teal hand stamped and dyed cotton from Stylemaker Fabrics.  I purchased it a couple of months ago and see now that there is only 1 1/4 yards of it left and it is on sale!  Wow, it sold quickly!  I really enjoyed playing with the border print for this pattern because the panels and shape of the dress are quite unusual.  I positioned the bodice and main skirt pieces so that like colours would be together on the dress – I’m pleased with how the red design radiates out from the high waist.


The dress is quite comfortable with an elastic waist and modest neckline.  It would also be flattering in a drapey rayon as the pattern suggests – next time!
Feel free to check out what some of the other bloggers have made from Pattern Bundle #1 – there are lots of inspiring projects already posted with more to come before the sale is over!

I hope you’ll enjoy Sewing Indie Month this year and that you might consider taking part in the events to come.   Thanks, as always, for choosing to be a maker and for choosing to support small pattern companies such as Thread Theory!