Pattern: Simplicity 2501
Fabric: Green flannel cotton from Fabric.com (actually a quilting flannel I think)
Notions: Six 1/2″ green buttons, sew in interfacing, a set of 3/8″ shoulder pads
Notes: This is my new favorite photo of myself… see below for the shirt in living color! I was attracted to this pattern because of the ties and the puffy sleeves. I was looking to replicate a shirt I saw on Modcloth (see my last post for a photo of that) and thought this pattern looked like a good starting place. It’s a pattern that has different pieces for B,C, and D cups – I used the B cup pieces. There are several different styles, including pieces for long sleeves, 3/4 length ruched sleeves, and a bodice option with a peplum.
I opted to make view B, which had short puffy sleeves and a tie, but no peplum. I don’t think the peplum would have worked well with the plaid, as the pieces were rather curved. It took me forever to cut out the plaid so it would match up, but it was worth it! I’m especially proud of the fronts. It matches everywhere except the back sleeves. I used sew-in lightweight interfacing. I didn’t mention it, but I also used sew-in on the Beignet skirt, and I find that I prefer it to the fusibles. I don’t think it takes any more time than it takes to fuse, and I find it less annoying and the results nicer.
I made quite a few alterations, in order to get the fit and look I wanted. First I tried tissue fitting the bodice, which I found very helpful. There’s a good video tutorial on Gertie’s blog, if you are interested. I’ve ordered “Fit for real people” and I’m looking forward to reading it as well.I discovered that most of my shoulder width is in my back (which I knew) so I cut a size 8 on the back, and a 6 in the front. I also took about an inch total out of the waist – I wanted a more fitted look than the pattern was designed for. I drafted new pieces for the neckband and ties – the ones included were sort of dinky, and I wanted to be able to tie a bow. I added 12″ in length to each end of the tie. I sewed the sleeves in flat, which worked just fine. After the shirt was finished I wasn’t quite satisfied with the look of the sleeves – the puffs were tending to be droopy. I thought about it, and realized that the 1940s blouse silhouette that I love (which I was semi imitating) used shoulder pads… so I sewed in a pair of 3/8″ pads, and the look instantly improved. I would definitely recommend this pattern, and I plan to make another in a more traditional fabric (with longer sleeves.)
I am so pleased at how this came out – it matches the image I had it my head, and how often does that happen? I learned a lot about fitting on this one, and made alterations that gave me the fit I wanted. It was relatively straightforward, and the directions in the pattern were fine (It did jump around a bit, but since I did things in a different order it didn’t really matter.)