Rebecca Page recently released the Men’s Toronto Tee, following up on the popular freebie offering of the Women’s Toronto Tee. It is an easy to sew beginner pattern for a loose fitting, boxy tee with a round neck and inset sleeves designed for knits. I tested the pattern by making a running shirt for my husband from chitosante athletic knit.
Like other Rebecca Page patterns, this is a print at home pattern with the option to print on US Letter, A4 or A0 paper sizes. The pages require no trimming before taping and the file has layers to enable printing only the required sizes. I find this makes the assembly go much quicker!
I chose the US letter size to print at home and printed the medium and large sizes, based on the fitting instructions in the pattern. I graded from M at the chest to L at the waist to match my husband’s measurements. The seams are straight which makes it easy to grade using a straight ruler. I didn’t make length adjustments, even though my husband is a bit shorter than the 5’10” height for which the pattern is drafted.
The pattern has an optional pocket, which I chose to not include. It was my first time sewing with athletic chitosante knit and was worried about it being slippery and hard to get good placement. More importantly, it didn’t match the athletic styling I chose for this Toronto tee.
The pattern comes with a quick-glance cheat sheet with a summary of steps, followed by detailed instructions with pictures. I like to print the cheat sheet as handy reference while sewing and refer to the digital pdf on my phone for clarification of the more complex steps.
I found the directions for this pattern to be clear and easy to follow. Neckline bindings on knit shirts are my nemesis as I have difficulties making them sit flat and smooth. The neck binding on this shirt went in nicely on the first try! I think the extra width of the binding makes it easier to sew without stretching and creating bubbles.
I learned a new technique for hems with this pattern. The pattern suggested making a memory hem before sewing the side seams. It didn’t work with the athletic knit I was using as it doesn’t hold press marks, but I will be using this technique on future projects.
Overall I found this pattern easy to sew and I completed within 2 hours. I would highly recommend for all sewing levels, including as a first shirt project for beginners.
The pattern has modern fit that is more relaxed than my husband usually wears, but he appreciated the fit for a looser running shirt. He is accustomed to store bought shirts that he buys based on chest measurement and the shirts end up tighter at the waist then intended. Wearing clothing with ease made to his measurements does feel different. Perhaps I should be making him more clothes?
As noted earlier, this was the first time sewing with athletic chitosante knit. I bought 5 metres for $15 off the local classifieds! Such a great deal and in a great color. I’m always looking for ways to make our athletic gear more environmental sustainable. Potentially chitosante is better as research says it is created when chitosan, a natural biomass made from crab and/or shrimp shells, is combined with textile fibres creating a fabric that has natural and durable anti-bacterial properties. Chitosante strongly inhibits the growth of bacteria and stays fresh, hygienic and odor resistant. So we will see how this smells after being used over time!
I do have a few more metres of this material left and will be making a Women’s Toronto Tee for myself. Won’t we look cute matching on runs?