(not the best pic, hastily taken in the mirror with my new camera that I still don't know how to use!)
Ok, so this may not look like the most technical blouse ever, but it had a lot of elements that I wanted to try. I've made clothes before - I used to make those massive dresses you see in old western re-enactments, but a lot of those techniques are different to what we do nowadays.
(what I often made. Gorgeous pattern)
I've made clothes for myself before as well, but they were things like summer dresses, pyjama bottoms etc. Things that were allowed to be baggy and wonky looking. But I wanted to make something I could wear all the time.
I drafted the pattern myself, based on a favourite blouse I already had. I made a few changes. I allowed for the back to come down a lot lower, to allow for my builders butt that often comes out when I'm working in the studio!, I added darts, and I added bias binding around the neck and arm holes. The original top just had a seam and it was a bitch to iron!
(here's a blurry pic showing the length at the back and the lovely drape of the fabric)
(This shows how I made the sleeves thinner and added bias binding)
(Close up of my bias binding. Bit wonky now I look at it. Too scared to use the
machine on my first attempt at it!!)
Now I was quite naughty. I didn't make up a practice top (muslin?) I had this beautiful silky fabric and only 3 hours. Luckily nothing went wrong and I had almost no wastage or anything like that. I got lucky!
So, things I learned:
-how to do bias binding
-how to hem a curve
-where to put a dart in without a pattern
-that this fabric was lovely to sew with and to stop being scared of anything new and just do it!
-that I'm smaller than I think I am! I tend to allow loads of room for movement, but I've actually lost weight!
-use a zig zag stitch in replacement of an overlocker
Most importantly, this little project has given me more confidence. I am good at sewing. And I'm not saying ti to brag or anything, but it's something I can actually do quite well. After finishing this blouse I had the courage to take in one of my cardigans that I've been meaning to do for ages. Bit scary cutting the sides of the knitting, but it worked and it's lovely now. I may show you that when I get another free evening.
Just remember guys, just do it. If you're afraid of a new technique, just have a go at it anyway. It might be easier than you think, and it'll open up loads of opportunities for you!