Monday, September 10, 2012

Heather Ross summer blouse

When I started sewing, prior to my blogging days, it was to sew cute outfits for my daughters. But I have never, ever sewn something for myself. Mostly this is because I have big boobs. Hard to find patterns that cater to the sistas! But I have been a wee bit obsessed with sewing myself a fall wardrobe lately, given all the amazing fabrics out there, and I decided to take the plunge and start with the summer blouse pattern from Heather Ross's Weekend Sewing book, which has been sitting up on the shelf for ages. Incidentally, that book has now been joined by her latest, Heather Ross Prints, which is absolutely freaking awesome and I assume you are all smart enough to buy! ;)


I definitely had some blips along the way making this shirt. I originally planned to make this in my long-hoarded Amy Butler lotus flower and moon dots, as the pattern called for 1 - 5/8 yards and I had 2 yards of each. BUT, wrong-o. The layout of the pattern pieces showed that the sleeve piece should fit alongside the front and back pieces, but it didn't, so I ended up needing about 2.5 yards to lay the pieces all out. Of course I didn't clue into this until I had ALREADY started chopping up the fabric (grr). Lesson learned, check and double check! So, to avoid further spoilage of dear and hard to find out of print fabrics, I started again with this cute print I picked up for a good price at Fabricland ages ago. I love the style of it for this shirt.


Overall, for a first attempt at sewing, this shirt is wearable. I love the laid back style of it, and certainly plan to make it again. When I do, in addition to the fabric quantity modification, I will definitely lengthen the shirt. It falls a bit too high for my liking, and while it looks good layered with a longer tank top, I think it is too short to wear on its own. Conversely, the sleeves were way too long. Also, I would probably shorten the neck slightly in the front. And while we are splitting hairs, I may choose a fabric with a bit more drape.

What I love about this shirt (and where I think I kicked some clothes-sewing ass), was the hand stitched orange detail and button along the neck. Just adds so much to the look! I love it.


Also, I made the shirt using French seams, which leaves no raw edges, and this makes the finish look so much more polished. Will definitely do this for all clothing I make in the future, and judging by the ridiculous amount of online fabric shopping I have done lately, there should be plenty of clothing to follow!


16 comments:

Little Island Quilting said...

You and me too sista...geddit ;-)

Anne said...

That came out really well! It looks store bought. :D

My goals for the year have only two things left: Try sewing a garment and free-motion quilting. I'm scared of both! lol

I have the same problem as you do (which leads me to wanting to make my own clothing) with the large boobs. Your top has given me some much needed courage! I may attempt this Schoolhouse Tunic after all! ;)

bethanndodd said...

Looks great on you, I am so impressed with your skills! Smiles~Beth

corina said...

Love the orange stitching! You done good girl!

Kasey said...

thats awesome. i'm still too chicken to tackle sewing for myself. someday though someday.

traceyjay said...

oh my gosh -- it's gorgeous!!!
makes me want to make myself a shirt (that fits so nicely of course)

love it Kristie.

deadlycraft said...

That looks great! I have the same issue as you but that is what led me to sew clothes for myself as I can't find store bought stuff to fit. Am just working my way through my first FBA to try and improve fitting issues concern the ladies - so far, so good! I hope this leads to more sewing for the sistas (there is totally a blog series in there!)

Tawny said...

Fantastic sewing Kristie! I always have to lengthen every top pattern I use as well. The girls like to pull everything up a bit hehehe making everything a tad shorter than it appears on the picture. :) Love the detail around the neckline.

Jill said...

I had the same issue with this shirt, sleeves way too long and the hem needed to be lengthened. Glad it wasn't just me :). I love the detail at the neckline on yours!

Katie B. said...

What's up, Sassy Lady! You totally kicked that shirt's ass, what with the fancy seams and glorious hand-stitching. More!!!

Wendy said...

What a great shirt, it's so pretty and I love those hand stitched details - perfect. I really want to make myself some clothes but keep telling myself I should wait until I've finished losing weight!

Unknown said...

I totally feel your trouble having space for the girls without feeling like I'm wearing a tent and having cold winds blow up from underneath :-)
I really recommend Palmer Pletsch Fit for Real People, that really helped me understanding my own fitting issues and gave me a way to get the fit just right.
You might look a bit ridiculous wearing your pattern pieces, but it totally works for me :-)

Little Blue Mouse said...

That orange detailing round the neck really sets it off!

felicity said...

Gorgeous gorgeous! I looooove the orange stitchy detail + button. Very special.

I got the Fit for Real People out of the library in view of my F/G cups (seriously) but haven't given it a try yet. Soon! For now, I will continue to wear mostly knits up top.

Jacey said...

Very nice! I love this print, and you're right; it works so well for the style! And your fun hand-stitching is such a fun detail! Sorry about your cutting mistake, though. Boo. I bet you can find a way to use those pieces!!

H2Ogirl said...

I hear ya! This looks great! The details are stunning. I can't wait to see how you alter this next time :)

I would totally join in if you do a series of 'sewing for the sistas '