In my summer planning post, I mentioned I had some stretch woven shirt fabric that I intended to make up into Burda Three Quarter Sleeve Blouse 06/2013 #119. Well, that post must have been great motivation, because I went on a Burda shirt muslin frenzy! As well as the three quarter sleeve blouse, I muslined a stack of other shirt patterns – one of which was this Burda Silk Blouse 04/2011 #105.
As you can see, the silk blouse pattern won this round! Despite looking great on Kamila, the three quarter blouse just didn’t work on my body type. No worries there – the silk blouse is a ripper pattern, and now I have a few more shirt patterns up my sleeve from other successful muslins.*
I’ve made this silk blouse pattern before a few times, but have recently started to wonder if my numerous adjustments for a broad back would be unnecessary if I simply sized up from a 40 to a 42. Sometimes you don’t want to be proven right, and I was – meaning I could have saved a lot of time and effort in the past trying to get a size 40 bodice to fit my rugby player shoulders! The size 42 doesn’t quite correlate to my measurements, but sometimes sewing is more art than science, I find.
I had intended to make this shirt up without major style adjustments, but when the time came to attach the cuffs, they looked ridiculous. They were very long and hung down over my hands, with the split creating a kind of Fantastico the Creepy Magician vibe. Of course, this was completely obvious in the pattern photo, but I must have been distracted by this lady cleaning her (tropical?) pool** in a silk blouse to notice.
So I created a lot of work for myself and shortened the sleeves, before inserting a tower placket (IN THE ROUND) and a narrower cuff. This was way too much trouble for what it was worth, and in retrospect, I could have put a smaller, seamed cuff on as per Sewing in Athens and called it a day. Her solution is more sympathetic to the style, too.
I enjoyed sewing this shirt, and always need more white shirts in my wardrobe. One of the best things about shirtmaking is the options for customisation – once you’ve got construction down pat, you can throw whatever buttonband / sleeve placket / collar style / hem / seaming technique you like at a pattern. I’m particularly fond of the new set in button placket method I used on the right front – it gives the look of a separate buttonband without the work. As my seamstress grandma says, there’s always something new to learn!
Pattern: Burda Silk Blouse 04/2011 #105
Pattern details: “This blouse is sporty and elegant at the same time, with concealed buttons and a simple pointed collar. Make it in silk satin to tuck into your work pants and skirts, or sew it up in a light cotton for the summer.” Available from Burdastyle magazine, April 2011, or as an A4 PDF download. Sizes 36-44. No seam allowances added. PDF comes with 1 shirt and 3 dress variations (#105-108).
Fabric: 2m x 120cm superior stretch poplin – white from The Remnant Warehouse. 98% cotton, 2% elastane, 150gsm. “This poplin is thicker and more luxurious than our stock range of poplins, and stretches well along the weft of the fabric. A perfect stretch shirting fabric.”
Other materials: Tessuti lightweight interfacing. Pearlescent bowl buttons from Aliexpress. Legacy Wash-N-Gone water soluble stabiliser.
Mods: Size 42 bust to size 44 hips.
– 1/2″ forward head adjustment, same to sleeve cap
– Approx. 1.6cm height removed from sleeve cap and some width to reduce ease to approx. 6mm either side of shoulder notch
– Added 7.5cm length to hem (+1.5cm hem allowance)
– Added 3mm to CB collar/stand to true, slightly shortened and brought point in 2.5cm
– Omitted concealed button placket and sewed 2.5cm turn-under placket on left side, set-in placket on right
– Dropped bust dart apex 5mm and shortened 1cm
– Omitted pocket
– Shortened sleeves 5cm, omitted pattern cuff and sewed self-drafted boxed tower placket and cuff
*And a few failures, one of which was this bizarrely-fitted Vado pattern.
**Thanks to those who pointed out that the model was cleaning a pool in my previous post. Having never seen this actually happen, I assumed she was digging a veggie patch or something. Neither scenarios make any sense whatsoever.