Completed: 50s Scalloped Blouse
I’m quite thankful that I decided to take a mini break from Sew Weekly over a week ago. I have no idea what happened but all my weekends are completely filled with events & activities, now till the 2nd week in July! I’m hoping I can continue to have sewing projects in the works, but I fear posts may end up being a bit more sporadic on my blog.
In light of all of the summer activity, I’m happy to report that I’ve completed the Mail Order 2629 Scalloped Blouse.
I know I said it before, but I wish I had taken a picture of my muslin before I made the alterations. It’s totally night and day from how baggy and big it was to how it looks now. I feel like it should have had this silhouette from the beginning with sans alterations… one can only wish though, right?
Guess what….I was a rebel, sewing up this blouse. A ‘certain someone’ constructed it without any interfacing or stabilization of any kind. Pure craziness! heh
The fabric itself is a light to mid-weight cotton; it’s lighter than a quilters cotton, but thicker than a voile or vintage bed sheet. So I really didn’t think it needed any extra stabilization at the buttonholes since I was sewing through 2 thicknesses of the cotton. It may surprise you but I’ve actually come to dislike interfacing on the inside collar for summer blouses. I do know some styles/fabrics need it, but with this blouse I nixed it and I’m glad I did. The result is a nice, breezy summer blouse that was made to beat the heat.
Can I just point you attention briefly to my peplum waist seam line? The two flowers you see crossing over the waistline seam…. that was pure pattern matching magic! Felix didn’t really ‘get’ it like I know you gals will. The lower blouse seam (waist line) is straight whereas the peplum waist seam is curved yet somehow I was able to match the floral motifs. I tried to get as close as possible when cutting it out, but I was pleasantly surprised to see it actually worked when I stitched it together. :)
I’m planning on cutting out fabric for version A next, the scalloped collar one, and I bet I’ll be adding interfacing to that collar so it holds it shape.
Having no yellow thread in my stash, I sewed the buttons on with white thread. The yellow buttons I used feel a bit cheap and lightweight, but they were the only yellow buttons I found and were luckily are in the right shade. So, really I can’t complain.
One thing I’ve learnt with making this blouse, which I should have been well aware of before now, is taking into account the pattern details with my own figure. I have really narrow shoulders, that come close to a size 2 or 0 (via Colette pattern sizing) yet I’ve picked out a pattern that has a shoulder detail: smocking-gathers. I have a lot of patterns that feature tucks, gathers, and smocking at the shoulder as design details with I love. But having such narrow shoulders, I’ve had to heavily reduce the size of the smocking on this blouse.
You may be thinking I should have done the opposite: since I have narrow shoulders I should have more smocking to accommodate my figure. But this would have resulted in a huge *poof of fabric* right below my shoulder to my bust, which the muslin did! Instead I took a 2″ chunk out of the top shoulder and heavily reduced the smocking detail, and shifted it further in towards my neck.
Looking at my pink pattern piece vs. the original:
You can tell the difference between the two by the width of the shoulder seamline. The two holes on the original pattern piece is where the basting stitches are to be positioned for the smocking detail. Whereas on my pink pattern piece, you can make out the green dotted line in the middle of the shoulder and the pink dotted line near the scalloped neckline…. that’s my gathered width; it’s about half-the width of the original.
Here’s my front bodice pattern piece with my crazy angular tuck:
There are two french darts radiating from the lower side seam. I have the smallest tuck at the lower waist area since the waist was fine as is, but it was the bust and shoulder area that was gaping, so that is where the tuck starts to get wider. If my second muslin hadn’t worked out, I was going to just take a wider tuck until it fit properly.
I didn’t want to mess with the center front seam & neckline by taking width out there, I figured it would throw off the fit and style lines. I also didn’t want to take out width from the side seams since it was perfect on the back bodice piece. In retrospect, this was probably a pattern that may have benefited from a sba…. but my large tuck worked out just fine since the shoulders were too wide, and not just the bust area. This blouse ended up being one of those fixes that I needed to “sleep on” in order to work things out in my head before adjusting the pattern piece.
Back to the finished blouse, check out more of my crazy-awesome pattern matching:
Thaaat’s right! There’s a center back seam line in there somewhere. hehehe Truthfully though, it took me forever to cut out the pieces on this bodice. The fabric seemed to be silk-screened and I could barely find the correct floral motif to cut around since all of the motifs are slightly different. I did try to match up the motifs on the center as well, but I only got about 90% accuracy on it, opposed to the back which is pretty close to perfect. :)
I had the hardest time finding something to wear with this blouse. You wouldn’t think so since I have so many color options… but I have few summer skirts that are solid colors and in a straighter, A-line silhouette. I had plenty of wool skirts or full skirts, but nothing for this bodice besides jeans. (I did wear this cream linen skirt but it’s a bit snug to wear around…or sit).
I guess this is yet another gap I need to fill…. This one I don’t mind since it would enable me to wear this blouse more often (other than with jeans/trousers). :)