Make that another blouse – & more stashbusting!

Riding high on my success with the Jungle January blouse, I thought I’d dive straight in & make another while all was going well.  I used my Wardrobe Architect Pinterest board to decide what elements to combine, without going overboard.

One thing has become apparent over the last couple of weeks doing the Wardorbe Architect thingie.  I seem to be chanelling a bit of the 70s.  Not full-on retro stuff, but hints in the sleeves, bootcut or flared trousers & little jackets.  So while everyone else is looking to the glamour of the 50s & 40s – I have to pick the funky, glamourous 70s!  Now I am a 70s girl, but what I remember of the decade is definitely not stylish.  My mum dressed us kids in tartan trousers, turtlenecks, corduroys that got static & made the dried grass stick to them & pinafores in the winter.  I vaguely remember long dresses & floral prints for the summer, & a denim shirtdress??  No way I am going back to that, I prefer the idea of glamourous 70s!

Day 34 02-03

So with that in mind, the fabric for the new project is from my stash, a piece I bought in Cornwall last summer on holiday – because the first thing you do when looking for a place to stay is to Google “fabric shops in…”.  Right?  Along with various other pieces, I bought 3m of this polyester satin, large black dots on a cream ground – & I think it’s rather retro.  Normally I don’t buy polyester, but I could not resist these spots.  The Remnant House in Bude did well from that little excursion on a rainy day.

bishop sleeve blouse collage Going back to the bodice block, I traced off the front, added a 1.5cm buttonstand & 4cm wide grown on facing.  The hem was shaped like the Jungle blouse & the shoulder dart moved to the underarm.  The waist darts were eliminated & the side seam taken in an extra 1cm.  I think with this one though that I will sew a narrow dart, the fabric is so lovely & floppy but there needs to be a little more shape.

DSC07149-1On the back I measured a 12cm yoke & separated it from the rest of the pattern.  I drew a line up to the yoke seam line from the centre of the back dart positions, & cut up it to add 3cm of fullness to enable me to have gathers above the shoulder blades. This has worked out well.  One of the toiles I’d made for the jungle blouse had had a yoke, but I’d made it too high (only 8cm from the neck) & it didn’t sit right.  Again, the darts were eliminated, the side seam taken in an extra 1cm & the hem shaped.  I’m really happy with the back, so no adjustments needed there for the next time!

DSC07170-1The sleeves are my favourite bit!  🙂  I traced the pattern piece from the Jungle blouse, adding in the lines where I’d slashed & spread.  I cut up the centre of these lines on the front & back and added more!!  The back ended up with 10cm of fullness, the front with 6.  Then I widened the sleeve seems by 2cm on the back & 1 on the front, added 4cm to the length on the back and only 1 on the front.  This means that the back is fuller & longer & should have a fabulous hang when done.  And it does!  It is a bit of a bishop sleeve – to do it properly you should  go for full length with a deep cuff. Mmmm, I do love a bishop sleeve!  🙂  If you want to make your own, this is from Patternmaking for Fashion Design, by Helen Joseph-Armstrong.

DSC07165-1The collar is just a simple convertible collar, permanently disabled!  I never wear tops buttoned up to the neck so I placed the first button to have a decent “v” and an open collar.  I’ll make the stand & fall shallower next time, although it doesn’t bug me like this.  One thing that does bug me though is the front.  The rows of spots don’t line up across the front!  AARRGGHH!  The fabric must have slipped while I was on hands & knees pinning & measuring, & of course, I didn’t notice until it was too late!  I must remember not to look in the mirror – at least when its on I can’t see it!  Oh dear…

DSC07162-1Onto the stashbusting!  January was pretty good really.  I used some white linen that I’ve had for aaages to make a vintage jacket.  Bellatrix has scored really well with 4 stash fabrics used!  Woot!  I’ve decided to stick with my use 2, buy 1 from last year.  That means I get to buy 2 new pieces – if I need them..  Ha!  Who am I kidding, of course I NEED it!  Husband & I went up to Solihull on the weekend, he looking for lighting for the living room, me tagging along in the hopes of finding some goodies in the John Lewis sale.  As luck would have it, we both struck gold! I win though, because I managed to persuade him to buy my fabric!  I left clutching 4m of silk, two 2m lengths, & grinning like a Cheshire cat!  I’m-a-gonna make some fabulous blouses with these…

DSC07111I just need to decide on which details to cobble together from all the lovely images on my Pinterest board.  It may take a while.  😉

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Author: Anne W

I love fabric, and sewing. And I could do nothing else but sew, all day, every day, if I could!

28 thoughts on “Make that another blouse – & more stashbusting!”

  1. I love these big bold spots, they look fabulous. And how gorgeous is that silk….I’m not too far away from Solihull, may have to make a trip there myself!

  2. Yay on the stashbusting! I love your prints! All my current projects have been in stash for ages. It feels great sewing up old friends that I’d fallen in love with and am now (again) excited to be (almost) wearing!

    1. I had a little rummage in my silks box last week & pulled out two more candidates for blouses. Apart from those & the odd piece of linen, the rest all seems to be destined for the daughters! Daughter No2 cannot fit anything more into her wardrobe at this point in time! I do love using these fabrics now though, it’s good to make room in the boxes for something else! 🙂

  3. Fabulous, Anne! And I agree — there’s some fabulous 1970s stuff out there, and I think it’s finally getting old enough to be cute again. I actually just got some 1970’s patterns at my local thrift store about fifteen minutes ago! Great minds run the same channels. 😉

    1. When you get to the bottom of the bottom box & rediscover a beauty you just have to find something to use it on! I do need to reorganise my stash, but that will mean a day of doing nothing else but patting & folding fabric! 🙂 I get easily distracted.

  4. this is so lovely – and so far removed from the brown and orange polyester and corduroy I remember being subjected to in the 70s 🙂

  5. When did you get John Lewis in Solihull? I don’t recall it being there when I lived in Tamworth. Those fabrics are divine. And I love, love, love this blouse.

    1. It’s been there quite a while! 🙂 When they built the Touchwood centre, John Lewis was the main tennant. I’m making a pattern now that I may use for the spot chiffon…

  6. Love that fabric! Perfect for a blouse! I have some navy cotton with large white circles….and now some specific inspiration, thanks to you! The fit is excellent! And I have that book ..[runs fingers along bookshelf]

  7. Great blouse! You totally suit a bit of glamorous ’70’s vibe, and now that you mention it, I realize now that I can recognize that element of your style – very cool!! ^__^

    1. Why thank you! 🙂 It took me all this time to realise it, but thankfully now I know where to look for more inspiration!

  8. I agree with you about the spots – they’re lovely though pooh about the not quite lining up at the front. I love the blouse and the sleeves are just right. I’ll have to click through and check out the how to when I’m brave enough to do a shirt! I’m nearly there ….

    I laughed out loud reading about the corduroy trousers going static-y so grass stuck to them. I have cord skirts like that when I was a kid and I was forever picking the grass off. Hah! The things that take you down memory lane 🙂

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