So when I was in Paris last year I bought two fabrics. I made last year's birthday dress out of the blue circles fabric and had enough left in odd shapes for a project with lots of small pieces. When I saw BWOF 02-2009-129, it totally clicked, especially after Allison C made it and it turned out so cute.
Following Allison's lead, I didn't use the BWOF directions for the gathered neckline and sleeve. BWOF wants you to neaten the raw edges of the fabric with a narrow zigzag and then use zigzag over shirring elastic to gather. Instead I added allowances for casings and used regular elastic.
I was kind of proud of my clever method here. The fronts are lined, so I first sewed the neck edge of the front and front facing and turned right sides outward.
Then I sewed the sleeve to the front, ending the stitching at the finished edge of the front, leaving the casing allowance overhanging.
Next I turned under the casing short edge seam allowance for a neat finish and turned under the long casing edge of the sleeves/back.
Finally, I threaded the elastic through and stitched it in place at the ditch at the front/sleeve seam. This creates a nice finish on all the edges and a clean, continuous look on the outside.
I did my usual SBA of narrowing the bodice front darts. Oddly, I could have used some sort of weird FBA on this one because I found the upper bodice a little bit too short. Had I muslined (as if!!!) I probably would have added about half an inch of length to the upper bodice front pieces so the midriff would sit securely under the girls instead of creeping up over them a bit.
I didn't really understand the point of the darts in the lower back, so I folded them out. To compensate, I added a center back seam and took an extra large swayback adjustment, slashing and overlapping right below the waist and adding the length back in at the bottom. The fit in the back is good and I don't miss the darts at all.
I left off the bow; although I love it in the solid, it seemed too busy for my print fabric.
I love the style of this blouse, and somehow find the shape of the back neck with the gathering very appealing. It's so simple, but something about the design is unusually nice.
I was so pleased to find a pattern for the rest of my lovely Paris fabric! I adore my birthday dress, but it is not an everyday piece. This blouse, on the other hand, allows me to be secretly Parisian on an otherwise ordinary day at work. Pass the macarons!
All photos are here and the review is here.