Morning electric eels. I think it’s time to do your part and connect yourselves to the energy grid. Give back for the greater good and all…
New blouse! New blouse! Today I’ve got a lovely new blouse to show all y’all eels. The Jasmine from Colette patterns!
Unfortunately for all of us, the photo cannot possibly convey how luscious this shirt is to wear! I had about one and three quarters yard of this heavy silk lying around. I’ve always thought of it as silk charmeuse, and it has the drape and slippery quality that comes to mind when I think of charmeuse, but it’s a very heavy silk and both sides have the same amount of slip and shine, as opposed to the one-side-dull-one-side-shiny gig that charmeuse is supposed to have. Is it satin? Is there such a thing as silk satin? I need a crash course in fabrics!
The Jasmine blouse is cut on the bias – that, plus the collar, make this a fabric hog. The size 18 blouse calls for 2.5 yards of fabric, so I was starting 3/4 of a yard short! I assumed that I could make up the difference by clever cutting and possibly using a different fabric for the facings (I was thinking silk organza as I have that on hand.) Alas, I just couldn’t do it! I ended up using a lace trim for the collar and the rest of the shirt is cut pretty funky, One sleeve is cut on the lengthwise grain, on on the crossgrain. The cuffs and facings are pieced!
The blouse gets a lot of it’s shaping from curved center front and center back seams. I really love the way the bias makes it fit – close, but not tight. I did a few pattern adjustments – I added about six inches to the the hemline by just flaring out a bit – I started with the size 18. I also added a few inches – maybe three – to the sleeve hem bands. Since the sleeves are full and gathered I didn’t add to them. Here’s a not-to-scale sketch showing what I added – I started right below the darts and added using the pivot method. I added the sleeve hem band width by slashing in the middle and adding a bit of wax paper.
The most obvious change is, of course the lace at the neckline instead of the collar and tie. It wasn’t too difficult to swap out – the croched trim had enough give that I could attach smoothly around the curved edge. I attached it using the same method that I would have the ‘sanctioned’ collar, basting to the right side of the blouse, then sandwiching between the facing and the blouse.
My poor, brand new needle did some stich skipping! To get the collar to behave perfectly, I hand tacked it so that it lays down flat. Without the tacking, it stood up at attention in a rather fetching manner! I just wanted a more low key look. I also had to tack the facing and collar down so that it stays in place in the center front. Here’s where I did the hand tacking.
Since the collar is so thick, it did present some problems. I trimmed well, machine understitched most of it, and left the center front to understitch by hand. I also had to tack the facing to the center front seam to get it to behave.
Served three ways!
The last word… Colette Crepe
Fabric: Heavy silk… crepe?
Pattern: Jasmine, Colette Patterns
Notions: interfacing, trim, thread
Time to complete: 45 minutes to grade up pattern, 3 hours to figure out how to cut it. 2 hours for machine sewing, 1 hour to hand hem cuffs, 30 minutes to get collar under control by hand sewing, and entire Saturday morning to hem.
likelihood to make another?: fairly high!
curvy girl score: this one gets a 9! Very flattering, easy fit, great for tucking. My only complaint has to do with the grading of the open neckline. Mine seems much less wide and graceful than some of the other finished Jasmines I’ve seen. It might be the fabric and my sewing methods, but it’s not unusual for the larger sizes to have less pronounced details as they don’t translate well when grading up. I’ll compensate for that on the next one by cutting a bit wider – if I remember!