I really like the versatile and comprehensive pattern McCalls 6711. I have made the dress, muslined the jacket, and I like both the skirt and pants. And now I’ve made the blouse (which is just a shortened version of the dress). If it goes on sale I may buy another copy to have on hand!
This blouse is made from a beautiful, gorgeous, lovely silk-cotton that I bought in the LA Garment district. Of course I’ve been hoarding it, like I do. Why do I do that? I know I will enjoy the fabric more once it is made up and I can actually wear it! So I jumped over the hurdle of my habit of “saving the good stuff” and made this blouse. I think it turned out pretty and I will wear it quite a lot, actually. I’m chastising myself right now for waiting so long to use it!
I was torn as to whether or not to line the blouse because it is so sheer. I lined the blue dress with cotton and it resulted in too much body. That meant the top of the dress didn’t hang like I wanted it to. Grrrrr. So this time I didn’t line it (except the yoke is self lined so all the edges are enclosed) since I figured I wear a camisole 80% of my life, since I am always cold. And I do love how the soft drape tucks in nicely.
Speaking of camisoles, I would love to have some silk ones. I could make a big batch of them and feel super luxurious everyday. I think my next big project (after the Wardrobe Contest) will be lingerie and underthings. I am intimidated and intrigued by the process, but it would be a fun challenge.
Can you see the subtle sparkles in the fabric? They are so subtle that my eagle-eyed photographer/daughter did not believe that they were there until we went out into the sunlight. I don’t think we did a sufficient job of capturing them in a pic. Please believe me, they are there!
I remembered to write a note on the pattern to take the neckline down another inch. Yay for actual notes I wrote down! And I lengthened it just about 1.5 inches so that it would tuck in easily and securely.
Now, gathers…I had rows of perfectly gathered fabric at both shoulders and the back. The shoulders turned out well, but the back does not have even and tiny gathers. The trick that has finally dawned on me is—it doesn’t matter how perfect you have basted and gathered, the final step of sewing it must be as close to the basting line as possible. Especially in a fine fabric such as this one. I sewed the yoke on maybe a quarter of an inch away from my basting stitches and so it folded and pleated and made me so sad. I think next time I might just sew right on top of my basting stitch and pick out any stitches that show. It only takes a second to pick those stitches out. But I do not think I could have unpicked the entire back of this blouse in that delicate fabric after I had sewn the yoke down, so it will stay as is. At least it is on my back and I won’t lament it often.
Tomorrow I get started on the big wardrobe project!!! My promise to myself is that if I do not get at least 4 pieces done in the first 3 weeks, then I won’t enter the contest. I do not want to be stressed at the last minute. The Sewing Bee was different because we were only given a week to complete each challenge. But I plan on thoroughly enjoying this fun project!