BWOF 8/07 #117
Monday is the first day of school, so yesterday I had to attend teacher's meetings and try to get my classroom organized. This fall I get to teach Physics, Biology, Yearbook and a senior Composition class. This should be interesting. I know the Composition class doesn't quite fit with the science classes, but it is an extremely important class since good written communication skills are essential into today's electronic media driven society.
While teaching such fun classes, I'll get to wear my new blouse, BWOF 8/07 #117 (and of course, my new skirt and shoes):
Fashion photos today are courtesy of my son.
I really like the style of the blouse, plus it wasn't any harder to make than a regular blouse. This one is worth making. Being that it is BWOF, there are a few things about the construction that I'd like to share with in case you decide to make one.
First, I decided to use french seams throughout, except for the armhole seam, which I bound. This of course, is a personal preference for me for unlined garments. I suppose the whole thing could be serged, but since this version is white, I opted for the french seam.
Second, I found the suggested interfacing by BWOF to be a bit odd. On the pattern layout in the magazine, they denote pieces to be cut in interfacing by shading them in grey. If you follow the layout to a "t", you would be cutting two interfacing pieces for both the collar stand and collar. Now, most people with sewing experience would realize that you really only need one piece of interfacing each for the collar stand and collar, but this could be a problem for someone with less experience. What I find really odd concerning the interfacing is that there is none shaded for the button/buttonhole plackets. Usually, there is shading on half of the piece (so that you don't end up with too many thicknesses of interfacing) but on this one there's nothing. I felt the plackets needed that extra bit of support, especially since there will be buttons and buttonholes involved. I went ahead and interfaced those pieces, on one half only.
Third, I found that the markings for the tie placement on the front pieces is a bit nebulous. That's to be expected due to all the pleats in the waist area. The front placket piece is marked very clearly, so I suggest just pinning the tie ends in place, and when you go to stitch on the plackets, line it up properly and re-pin or baste the tie in place.
Lastly, I found one thing about the sleeve placket that needs a caution. To prepare the sleeve for the cuff, you slash the opening and then bind the slashed edges with a bias stripe. I couldn't find anywhere in the instructions that tell you to stay stitch either side of the opening before slashing. This may be an understood thing for an experienced sewist, but not for someone new. Personally, I hesitate to slash into any fabric without it being stabilized in some way. I double checked with a few books in my sewing library, and sure enough, it is suggested to stay stitch before slashing. Here's a series of pictures, showing the progression of the sleeve placket. First, the slash is marked and stay stitched.
It is then slashed to the point, opened up, and the bias strip is applied right sides together with a narrow 1/4" seam.
That middle point is a bit tricky to negotiate - be careful and stitch slowly. The bias strip is then folded in place and stitched down. You can stitch it down by hand or by machine. I opted to stitch it down by machine from the right side, very close to the seam line.
In the last photo, you can see the diamond pattern of the fabric. The little diamonds make it a bit more interesting than just plain white fabric.
If you love the look of this blouse, do put it on your list to sew. It's pretty in white, but wouldn't it be fabulous for the holidays in a deep burgundy silk with burgundy velvet ties, collar and cuffs? How about a black blouse with the ties, button placket, collar and cuffs in black and black faceted jewel-like buttons?
Parting Shot: My desk. After the meetings, I went to excavate my desk. Our administrator has just been piling all stuff on my desk all summer - that's three month's worth of incoming textbooks, standardized test materials and mail! There's also two large stacks of books he didn't bother putting on the desk, so he put them on my demonstration table.