May 20, 2011

RTW Blouse Tweaking Done!

Blouse front after
I bought this blouse recently but made a couple changes.  Thursday was our first warm spring day and I wore it :)  It's going to be great for hot summer days.

The shoulders are a little wide and it has no waist shaping.  I don't dig gathered sleeves on myself so decided to do something about them.  This had the added advantage of visually narrowing the shoulders.

Sleeve pleat

I box pleated the sleeve trim until it looked right and pinned it in place.  Then I hand sewed the pleats in place: backstitched along the original seam line, whipped the pleats down from the wrong side, and sewed the trim together where the pleats meet.  Finally I steamed the gathers to help the excess sleeve fabric form pleats.
Blouse sleeve, back tie

To add some waist shaping I dug through my notions box and came up with poly twill tape.  Normally I don't like this stuff but it matches my fabric, is thin like ribbon, and the ends can be heat sealed :)  I had exactly enough, too!  I cut the tape in half, sealed the ends, and stitched them to side seams at waist height.  The blouse fabric is very thin so I sewed through the seam allowances and made three lines of stitching to disperse the load.  Tie in a bow and you're on your way  :)

Sleeve before pleats


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