This is a variation of Butterick 6133 and it forms part of a theme. Over the next three months I will be making three garments which will work together to form one stunning outft.
But first the blouse.
When cutting my fabric out I wanted a slightly curved hem at the back so I simply drew new cutting lines directly onto the fabric for the side back and centre back pieces using tailors chalk. It does not need much of a curve, just a hint of one.
There is a lot of gathering on this blouse and so I was careful to transfer all the pattern markings onto my fabric with Tailors Chalk
On the front yoke I decided to do some pintucking. For this you need a pintuck foot for your machine, a twin needle, and as corded pintucks look good, you need some piping cord. I experimented with how much width I would need to do pintucks as opposed to gathers and by doing a sample and measuring it I discovered that I needed to run pintucks the entire width of the upper yoke, doing this would make the two pieces fit together perfectly.
Have you ever wondered what the hole in your sewing machine base plate is for? If you look at the picture you will see that I have some thread running from the bobbin case up through the hole and pulling out behind my machine foot. Please note I am demonstrating pin tucks in white as it is easier for you to see on the photos.
To find the correct width of piping cord I took a length of Piping Cord
size 00 and split it into three to get the perfect width.Try experimenting with six strand embroidery thread or a fine crochet cotton. The only cord I could find which was fine enough was too expensive so I experimented with what I had already.
Have a practice first. I marked the first line of pintucks with tailors chalk on the right side of my fabric and also the point where they finished. Warning! It is time consuming but very addictive! I did not have time to pintuck the entire garment but I am satisfied with what I did. As you can see from the photograph the corded pintucks look amazing. Do not press them flat, a blast of steam from your iron will plump them up though. You may need to tighten your tension so this is why practicing first is important.
I attached pieces of lace at the shoulders so that the edge just covered the seam and the start of the pin-tucks. This was the wider cotton lace.
For the rest of the garment I more or less followed the instructions, unusual for me I know, I do tend to have my own methods. So the next stage is to attach the upper back to the yoke.
This time I am following instructions and working two rows of gathering stitches between the dots and pulling them to fit evenly. Then joining the side seams. All my seams are overlocked as I go along.
Then the lower back pieces are joined and the upper bodice then needs to be gathered to fit, again between the dots. Overlock as you go as always and do keep trying it on for fit!
I added some lace to cover the seam where the upper back bodice meets the yoke and took another different piece of lace right the way around the waist. Using a zig zag stitch to hold it in place.
I made up the facings, overlocked the outside edge and attached it to the garment. The instructions tell you to leave gaps in the seams at the right front to form a buttonhole but I ignored that as I wanted to place the buttons where I wanted them and it may not have coincided with my own plan.
Understitch the facings as far as you possibly can as it will hold them in place neatly.
The back facing needs folding under 5/8" and pressing before slip stitching neatly in place. Also slip stitch the facing down at the shoulders
To insert the sleeves, first gather the bottom edge and the top between the dots. Use two rows of stitching and do not fasten them off.
Press the sleeve band in half and attach it to the bottom of the sleeve, gathering the sleeve to fit the band. Join the underarm seam. Neaten the edges and then fold under the underside and tack in place. I then added some lace to the band, using a small zig zag top and bottom.
Start to pin the sleeves in place matching the notches and gathering the top to fit. Make sure that the gathers are evenly spaced and then stitch the sleeve into position, overlocking the edge afterwards.
The pattern instructions tell you to insert the tie at the neckline whilst you are attaching the facing but as I am using lace as a tie I am adding it now, stitching it just next to the edge of the neckline as the photograph shows. Whipstitch the raw ends of the lace by hand .
I wanted heavy cotton lace around the bottom edge and pinned it in place first. If you decided to have a curved hem at the back then you will need to gather the lace or it will pull out of shape and look unsightly, if needs be you can alter the curve at this stage and make it less pronounced. Pin then baste the lace in place, stitching it without pulling it, and then when you are happy with the look zig zag it in place turning the ends under.
Now it comes to measuring the buttonholes. I have all sorts of nifty gadgets, but a ruler and chalk pencil is all you really need.
Take a chalk pencil and a ruler, and measure where you want each button to go. The buttonholes go on the right for a lady. Mark the position of each buttonhole accurately and also mark the distance from the front to the end of the buttonhole. Machines vary in how buttonholes are sewn, so refer to your machine instructions. Always do a test one first mimicking your actual garment by putting interfacing between two scraps of fabric. I often find that this test buttonhole needs a bit more adjustment, so it is not worth skipping it.
I used eight buttons in all and sewed each one on using double waxed thread for strength. If you find that the fabric gapes at the bust then add a hook and eye to keep it closed. The Buttons
are incredibly pretty flower shapes.
Tidy any loose ends and give it a final press. And here is the finished blouse...
You can of course do more pin tucks or omit them altogether and just do gathers and you can add more lace if you want to. Pintucks and lace down the front would be lovely.
This as I said forms the first part of an outfit that I hope you will like, it is certainly something very different for me.
Happy new year to all of you.