will spring come, so I can wear it?
This is BWOF 1/2011 #107, and because it's Friday, and because I'm tired, and because it's freaking flurrying AGAIN outside, I'm going to be lazy and copy my patternreview here, rather than wracking my brain to think of new things to say.
Pattern Description: Burda's description says nothing about what's so special in this blouse. Fitting darts (2), front and back make for a smooth fit. Attached button plackets give the opportunity to play with fabrics. Inset collar-band (shown below) makes the collar lay smoothly. Above-elbow sleeves with band, pleats and 2 buttons. Best of all, an interesting pleat down the back of the blouse stitched partway down and allowed to flare open below the waist. The line drawing below makes it much clearer.
Pattern Sizing: Burda sizes 36-44. I made a 44 without alterations; I'm a 38 in Burda knits and a 40 in wovens. One of the things I love about them is the consistency of their sizing.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? I think so. Their photo didn't show any of the blouse's best characteristics, in my view.
Were the instructions easy to follow? I only used them to check myself as I went along, since I find that Burda's instructions only serve to confuse me. On the other hand, they've made me a much better sewist over the years as they've forced me to puzzle out things that I couldn't understand, and this has served me well. These instructions actually look pretty clear for Burda.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I'm thinking spring, even though there's a foot of snow outside, and this blouse really called to me when I first saw it.
Fabric Used: Liberty-esque floral cotton lawn from Metro Textiles in NY. When I bought it the fabric looked like it had a black background, but now, either due to a difference in lighting or putting it through the wash, the background color is a deep, dark brown. Either one works fine with my wardrobe, so it's all good.
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: No major changes except for one. I make a lot of men's shirts, and when I saw that the shoulder yoke piece was cut once, on a fold, I wondered why. Men's shirts are made with two yokes, one interior and one on the outside, and I find that it adds stability to the garment and I'm sure a longer life overall. It was easy enough to cut a second yoke and put the blouse together the way I would normally construct a shirt. Especially since the blouse front is gathered (a great way NOT to to have to deal with the FBA issue), I didn't want the gathers just sewn to a single yoke and topstitched down. Sandwiching them in between the two yokes and then topstitching made it look much neater.
I loved my fabric, but I decided that it was a little much, all on its own, so I cut one of the button plackets from an olive-green solid cotton I had on hand from another project. I liked the contrast with the floral, and it's the same color as the leaves. I also cut the inside collar band from the same green.
The collar is interesting. Rather than a standard collar-and-stand, the stand is sewn along the bottom curve of the collar, making a one piece construction that is then sewn to the shirt. Very neat and tidy, and no nail-biting sewing of the band to the shirt, hoping everything lines up. Can you tell that's my least favorite part?
The back of the shirt has an inset pleat - the fabric is folded and stitched at the neck, then pleat is left open down the back, sewn closed for about 3", and allowed to open again below the waist. Very flattering, and a great way to tweak the fit if you don't sew that middle part of the pleat shut right away.
The sleeves are just above the elbow, and despite the line drawing, they aren't poofy at all. There are pleats, one on either side of the sleeve opening, and a substantial sleeve band, but it all manages to look smooth and not too cutesy, which I was afraid of. I had enough fabric left to make a different sleeve if these didn't work. Now I have another remnant.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I'll definitely sew this one again, maybe with a less distinctive sleeve. I like the sleeve, but the body of this blouse is something I can see using again and again.
Conclusion: A great little spring blouse - now if mother nature would cooperate and give us a little spring, so I could wear it!