Surprise! While those blouses are beautiful in their own right, this is not a blouse that a monkey could make. At the same time though, it doesn't require a jillion pattern pieces that take fah-evah to put together...inevitably entertaining your husband with endless source of amusement. :(
This One Yard Wonder Blouse is for a size small....and I don't claim to be the best teacher with tutorials either. If you haven't made a top before, this is probably not the tutorial for you. If you are a larger gal, you may need more than a yard of fabric too.
Recently I made my mom a blouse for an early birthday gift (see post here: http://knotwhatsheseams.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-role-reversal-behind-sewing-machine.html). I could imagine her going on many,many dates in that blouse. Here is me modeling it. It is definitely her, NOT me!
Onto me and my blouse! So, I have no problem showing my shoulders and my arms even though I am ghost white, burn easily, and my arms aren't as tiny as mom's. I also couldn't see myself wearing a "boxy" top and the all over blue was more mom than me. I got the "cousins" of that fabric as well. I am normally not an orange or a green fan either but the "cousins" fabrics were so pretty!
For me, I wanted a cap sleeved blouse, a slight scoop in the neckline, and I also wanted to try out the tie sleeves method. It was better to do so on something I would own than a customer pays for!
I only had a knit blouse to go off on. The fabric I would be using is cotton. I gave myself some extra seam allowance because the fabric wouldn't stretch like knit of course.
I also wanted to experiment with color blocking. I realize this is not a new idea. It's just new to me. I got some white jersey knit and cut out two rectangles 17 inches by 3 inches. I pined these right sides of fabric together to each side of the blouse. This would give me just a bit of stretch, a little more room, but the tailored/fitted look I wanted as well.
Now it's time to sew up the shoulders that are only halfway open.....
|I pinned the space that is opened....|
|Here I am showing you that one could easily turn down the edges where the shoulder |
splits open, hem them, and have a split drape sleeves that begin at the shoulders.
That wasn't the look I was going for though.
|Here is the blouse right side out, ironed but not top stitched yet, and the neckline and bottom hem have|
not been done yet.
|I tucked the side panel of knit on either side while ironing.|
When worn, it will lay flat or opened out.
Is it just me or does these rectangular casings remind you of dorky high school band uniforms with those gaudy appliques or decorations on the shoulders?! You see the same decorations or rectangular thingies on high ranking military officers' uniforms. Even old men think they are too cool with their outdated dress up shirts with rectangular loopy things on the tops of the shoulders! I bet if I were to raid my mom's boyfriend's closet, there would be PLENTY of those shirts hanging in there! :D
Don't worry, the blouse won't remain in this state. :P
|Remember that ironed crease down the length of the rectangle (shown|
here with my beautiful nail file)? Sew straight down the middle of the rectangle
following that crease.
|Ta da! You now have two pockets or casings as shown here with my|
super cool fabric pencil and nail file :P
|Measure your ribbon, cord, or in my case, bias tape enough to go through the casings and|
be able to tie in a bow at the end that faces the sleeves (not the neck). I did not cut my bias tape in two
pieces. I left it as one and looped in through.
|How stinkin' pretty is this?! (I had to use a safety pin to feed it through|
because my casings were narrow). No more old man shirt/dorky band uniform
|I loved the bias trim so much that I measured the neckline|
and remaining trim and determined I had enough to
use it on the neckline.....
|Since I wasn't finishing a raw fabric edge, I wouldn't need my go-to|
stitch. I used #4 stitch instead.
|I was thrilled with the end results!|
|I was so impressed with my blouse so far that I even pretended|
the seam in the very middle of this picture WASN'T wonky....
a certain 4 year old bumped my arm to steal a quick
hug and kiss while sewing the neckline!
I was so enthralled with the narrow bias trim that out of curiousity I measured how much was left and compared that to my bottom hem measurement. To my shock and delight I had barely enough.
Show off pictures...... :D
(Crappy pictures don't do the blouse justice given I was in a huge rush to get to my son's school)
.....I'm so happy with my blouse I am going to wear it to my Bible Study I teach at the jail tonight!
++If you don't have the time to make yourself a blouse, I will be selling a similar one in my shop later this week. I promise the one that the customer gets WILL have enough bias tape and WILL NOT have the evidence of an affectionate 4 yr old bumping me while sewing! haha.++