Flouncy Blouse

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I completed a May Burda project, and almost even finished within the correct month (even though it’s now July)! This May I chose a pattern from the 5/2017 issue–the petite raglan blouse with flounces and ties. It’s a little overtly feminine for my usual taste, but there’s something about this pattern that called to me every time I saw it in the issue!

Burda 5/17 #109

I used navy silk/cotton voile leftover from my button-down shirt, and had barely enough. The fabric is perfect for this top, but I’m a little disgusted at my finishing. You can see the wrinkling down the front seam… that’s because I’ve been too lazy to really figure out settings on my serger, and it does not do well with single layers of fine fabric. The wrinkling in real life isn’t that noticeable, but this project has made me vow to either learn the serger or use different finishing techniques on fine fabric. There’s no excuse!

Speaking of wrinkling, though, I cannot get the washing and storage wrinkles out of this fabric. It is pressed flat, but the wrinkles remain. Again, in real life it’s not so noticeable, but I don’t like it. Any suggestions?

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The flounces are cut on, leading to interesting construction. You finish the edges first, and then sew the lower part of the front seam right sides together, and the upper part wrong sides together. The flounces fall open so that the wrong side shows the most, and I actually switched right side for wrong as my hem looked better on the original right side. It is not easy to get both sides of the hem and the point where the seams switch to look absolutely perfect. I felt a little bad about it, until I saw that Burda’s example doesn’t feature perfect stitching either! If I make this again, there will definitely be significant hand stitching!

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I said “if” I make it again, because it’s too big. Significantly so. What’s baffling, is that this top is the petite offering for the month! I’m 5’4″, the tallest height listed for Burda’s petite sizing, and have had to add a touch of length for previous petite tops. Here, though, the armholes gape so that my bra shows and the hem nearly reaches my fingertips. Was this really a tall pattern mislabeled as petite??

That said, I do like the finished top quite a bit, especially when the bow is tied up snugly. It looks great tucked into a skirt with a cardigan for work, and I’m not all that concerned with a black bra peeking out under the arm with my casual weekend lifestyle. Let’s just hope truly petite ladies notice that the pattern pieces look too big before proceeding!

12 thoughts on “Flouncy Blouse

    1. I was wondering if I did something wrong it was so off! But even if I accidentally traced the biggest size, these lengthwise issues are still not explained. Otherwise it’s great!

  1. Hi Kelly, I love this pattern; it’s feminine without being over the top ruffly/flouncy. Kristy of Lower Your Presser Foot (who coincidentally also participates in a Burda of the month challenge) wrote about getting pleats out of a wool skirt for a refashion challenge using a Claire Schaeffer method which involves vinegar and brown paper bags here:

    http://loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com.au/2016/04/castaway-to-couture-my-grey-skirt.html

    I’m not sure if I linked her post correctly, but you can look up the post using her blog name and search her blog using the word “refashion.”

  2. Gorgeous top, the fabric is beautiful. What a shame about the sizing, maybe it was miss-labeled as you say. Re the seam finishes, I love a french seam for lightweight fabrics.

    1. I never regret using french seams, and I’ve already made a promise to myself to use them more in the future. I get so impatient sometimes! They wouldn’t have worked with this particular seam as it needed to be pressed open, but still, a even simple zig zag would have been a better choice!

  3. I have been so tempted by that pattern also. Very pretty and I think with a skirt it will be a nice item to mix and match. Re: seaming, on all items I sew them together on the regular sewing machine, I only use the serger for seam finishes later in the sewing process.

    1. This pattern does pair well with skirts, and pants and shorts–anything really! It’s surprisingly versatile. I use my serger in the same way, and it works barely well enough with lightweight fabrics when seam allowances are finished together. My downfall here was that the seam had to be pressed open, and, worse, that I serged away, even while knowing I’d have trouble. It seems ridiculous now! Anyway, I’ve had this machine for over a year, it’s seriously time to crack open the manual and learn how to use it better!

  4. I think it turned out beautiful. Too bad its too big. You could gift it too a friend! The wrinkles/front seam, all look to me like the nature of the fabric (of course I can’t “feel” it but just from seeing it) to me. Gives it character. For like a more natural flowy look! :o)
    My serger is still wrapped in plastic after 16 years of waiting. Now I feel too old and set in my ways to learn it. ;o) It was an impulse buy.

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