Monday, April 12, 2010

Cotton Blouse with variations

This week's project was a pair of cotton blouses.  Last year I saw a segment on a sewing show on PBS that detailed how to sew a stand collar in a different way than is usually specified in the pattern instructions, and is one of the best construction tips I have ever seen.  (nerd alert :  I use my Tivo search feature to find sewing shows)  Below are a few photos that detail this method.  

Recently I saw a review of some sewing DVD's on a great sewing blog, Very Prarie.  Kristin reviews these DVD's she won in a contest.  Reading her blog I realized that the woman on the DVD, Louise Cutting, is the same person I saw on TV.  So if you are looking for some great sewing instruction and tailoring techniques I bet these are worthwhile.

This method eliminates bulk on the front of the collar where the blouse meets the collar stand and gives a nice smooth edge.

collar with pencilFirst I always use a pencil to mark the sewing 
lines on the collar.  Who cares if there are pencil marks 
on the interfacing, they will be on the inside when 
it is all finished and I like to save myself time and 
eyestrain by sewing along the lines.

Then you attach the two pieces of the collar stand on either side of the blouse neckline and sew them on.  

Next the finished collar is sewn onto one collar stand.

At this point the clever part happens. 
First step,  move the collar and blouse front out of the way, by rolling them away from the sewing area and pinning to hold in place.                   

Then pin the collar stand pieces together and sew just the end of the collar.  The beauty of this method is that you can trim the seam allowances very nicely and turn this section to get a really smooth finish.

At this point you have a finished collar edge and the last step is to finish any trimming needed, and then close up the colar stand by topstitching the collar stand closed.

If you make a lot of collared shirts - I suggest checking out those DVD's or maybe Thread's magazine has covered this method -  I had never seen it before but is really so much better than the directions always given by the pattern companies.  

Here are the finished blouses.  McCall's 5673 which I see today shows out of print but perhaps still available.  

First blouse, I added a self facing down the front instead of a front placket, and put a scallop on the sleeve hem.

Blouse # 2  in a Japanese cotton, teal blue with a dragonfly print.
I added a pleated trim on the sleeve hem, and put a box pleat back vent for ease of movement.

Here is a close up of the sleeve trim.  

Today's SunnyGal Garden photo:    blossoms from my apple tree.   if it were a video clip you would hear the buzz of hundreds of honeybees,  which is great for the tree and the bees.

1 comment:

  1. Beth, you make such fine shirts! The details you added are incredibly charming. I'm glad to see that the tv/DVD magic works in real life- your collars are impeccable. -Kristin