I have been so procrastinate-y about posting actual completed garments here and on PR! Geez! So here is an outfit hot off the sewing machine. I started the skirt several weeks ago but just finished it last night, and I made the blouse mostly over the weekend and did a tweak to the fit last night and I'm wearing the outfit today for the first time. They don't get fresher than that.
The blouse is Butterick 4985, which I previously made for Spring/Summer with the flutter sleeves. I had made a bunch of fitting notes on the pattern pieces so for this version I added two inches(!!!!) across the back and scooped out from the front armscye so that it wouldn't be tight across the back. These went well toward solving the back tightness issue.
Cidell suggests that I shorten the shoulder seams on blouses as well, which I didn't do here but will try in the future. I should have added neck darts, I think, to counteract the two inches of width (I also added these to the collar so it would fit the new neckline). It doesn't matter with this style, but if it were a traditional collared blouse where the ends of the collar are supposed to meet it might be too obviously gapey around the neck.
This is my issue with fitting blouses, though. You can't just change one thing, you have to go through this whole litany of changes and I find that boring and frustrating. I am not a perfectionist, as you know. I'm all about volume. I love having a huge closet full of fabulous clothes. I'm not saying it's a good thing, but things don't generally get worn more than five or six times in a season. It's just not worth it to me to spend hours of not only time but concentration and frustration and the maddening pursuit of an impossible target to get it perfect.
I also added a fair amount of width at the hem. This made me look like a marshmallow. I love my white goddess dress, but apparently off-white just does not work on me. Especially not shiny off-white that emphasizes my pear shape. I don't think that the white and blue floral version of this makes me look so large around the middle, so I think it's the shine. That's a bit of comfort because then I don't feel like I "wasted" the fabric by choosing the wrong pattern. Shiny off-white is going to magnify my middle no matter what. I took it in at the front/side front seam and it is improved. In the pictures it doesn't look bad at all so I'll average how I look live in the mirror with how I look in the picture and decide that I look ok.
When I made it the first time I was taken by the idea of doing an in-seam buttonhole at the empire line, but didn't think of it in time. This time I did it. I sewed the bust/lower blouse seam on the right hand piece from the edges in 5/8 inch for the seam allowance, left it open for about 3/4 inch, and then continued on. Inside I serged the top and bottom together as far as the unsewn opening, clipped the fabric, serged the top and bottom pieces separately, and pressed open. I trimmed the seam allowance between the front and facing very small at the buttonhole, and made a buttonhole in the facing (which is one piece). I should have left a longer opening so I could have the button further in, and not have the seam allowance in the way. Next time. I'm really pleased with this detail
I also cut the inside collar and cuffs from a contrast fabric, mostly just because I didn't have enough of the pinstripe silk. The silk was purchased from Paron at PR Weekend 2007, I took only a little over a year to get to it, which isn't so bad considering how old some of the other things in my stash are! I have imminent plans for the green velvet from Kashi from the same trip, so I'm on a roll. If I actually make the navy wool skirt I will have used up all the fabric from that trip (the maroon jersey turned into a horrible, horrible wadder that I should eventually review)! That would be amazing. The navy wool skirt may have just moved up a few notches. For the collar and cuffs I used an olivey/bronzey silk dupioni from stash that had previously been tapped as the inside collar for BWOF 06-2008-105, yet another months-old unreviewed project.
The skirt is from another thrift store sweater. More details on that later.
All the photos of both iterations of Butterick 4985 are here. The review is here, and I'll update it soon (I hope). I think I will enter the Endless Combinations contest with this, the other blouse I have almost done, the skirt I made for Germany, and the yet-to-be-made green velvet skirt and whatever else I can get done by the end of December so that gives me an incentive to actually do reviews!
Gretchen the Household Deity