Well, I’ve added another ivory silk blouse to my closet. This pattern is from the 1980’s – a lovely Karl Lagerfeld gem that I have looked at longingly in my pattern stash over the years. I’m on a roll for ivory blouses this month, mostly due to the HepburnHepburn project, otherwise these projects would still be languishing in my stashes.
Anyways, I love this blouse. I love the silk crepe. It was an excellent choice for this pattern.
I did not do any alterations for this. It’s an ’80’s design and not as fitted as most blouse designs these days. It’s funny. I did most of my learning during the 1980’s, and never had to do any pattern alterations. In retrospect, this probably contributed to my disillusionment with sewing during the last 15 years of my life. I think I most likely should have done FBA’s from the get go, but never needed to due to the designs of that era. Hence my increasing frustration as designs became more fitted over the decades. It’s only recently that I’ve mastered the adjustments that I need to make things fit my figure.
Anyways, I was really stressed for the first bit working with this silk crepe. It handles very differently from tweed!!!!!! 🙂 And this blouse has a lot of detail… silk crepe does not easily forgive stitching errors… and this fabric just felt so fragile. So I went very slowly and meticulously. I have to say, once this was complete, I was overwhelmed by the sheer luxury of a beautiful silk blouse with incredible design details.
The big collar is what really attracted me to this blouse. (I love big collars – I think they frame my face nicely and draw attention away from the rest me!) Then the dickie was very interesting, and the button detailing on the front intrigued me. I wasn’t sure I’d actually put the buttons on the front, but I’m glad I did – they just add that little something! But then the back….
What attention to detail! The two buttons on the collar hide two snaps on the bottom half of the collar that hold it in place securely. Doesn’t it look so nice? And the facings on the back were done the way I remembered doing endless blouses in my teens: turn facing in along first foldline and stitch in place invisibly; turn in facing along foldline again and baste along top and bottom. That’s it! No interfacing – just three layers of fabric.
I did make one critical error in the construction of this blouse. When putting the stitching the collar pieces together, I inadvertently turned and trimmed the seam allowance on the top collar – with no interfacing. The interfaced piece should have been the side that shows. So I decided to use a trick I learned from a Montana shirt I put together a few years ago. I put the collar on upside down. I stitched the top piece to the inside of the neckline so the seamline would be clean should it show around the neckline.
Then I slipstitched the under collar on the right side of the garment so that you can’t see it along the neckline. The collar folds down over the handstitching and hides it from view.
I was actually glad that I did the collar backwards. I think it finishes the inside edge against my face in a uniform way (which doesn’t always happen with handstitches, unless you work for a haute couture aetelier in France somewhere.
I must say, every garment of mine has mistakes in it. I guess that’s what makes them unique! Have you ever salvaged some error that made you sick when you realized what you’d done? I’d love to hear about your mistakes-turned-good!