When I returned to the sewing room to finish the HAF, I just couldn’t. I just don’t like the fabric color. As I held it in my hands I realized I was unlikely to wear this shell. I have far too many other choices that I like. So instead of finishing this shell, opened all the seams pressed it flat and placed it in the less-than-a-yard stack with the intention of eventually having pocket and waistband facings.
Then I sat about choosing another fabric. One that I would wear. My choice is another 100% cotton from the same Fabricmart purchase. This fabric however was not on sale. It was a beautiful flower print with an oriental feel. I was so enamoured with the pattern that I bought enough, I thought, for a camp shirt. For me that’s usually 1.5 yards. Close examination of the print reveal that it is directional. In my past, I’ve ignored the fact that a print is directional. I thought no one would notice, especially if the upside-down part was on the back. Everyone noticed. OK not everyone but most of my friends would start to compliment the garment and instead would comment that I had missed the fact that I had used a directional fabric. Maybe my skin was too thin in those days. But it hurt to have a compliment stop mid-breath and turned into a condemnatory remark. Some friends, eh? My skin has grown thicker. I now actively seek comments that will help me improve my sewing. But the sting remains and I am very careful with naps and directional prints. The 1.5 yards that would have been enough for a camp shirt, was only 42″ wide and barely enough for my sleeveless shell.
I cut my fabric and still in love with the Otto neckline on #11 5/2009, I traced and cut that neckline onto the front. I was able to cut facings. I detest those narrow 5/8″ facings. If my facing is that narrow, I prefer to work with bias tape. If I’m going to make a facing, I’m going to make it a big facings. A big facing is easier to handle and adds weight so that the facing will roll to the inside. I stitched the shoulder seams of both the shell and the facings. I interfaced the facing and then pinned it carefully in place on the front of my blouse. I suppose I could have stitched first, but I prefer to trim on the dressform and then stitch at the sewing machine.
I pressed the interfacing and blouse neckline, under-stitched and then basted the facing in place along the armscye. I finished the armscyes with purchased bias tape. On the armscyes the bias tape is rolled completely inside. Only the final securing stitches are visible on the outside. However at the hem, I wrapped the bias tape around the edge so that a contrasting line is visible. In retrospect, I wish I had treated both armscyes and hem the same. But this is OK. Then I basted the side seams and took my first look at the fitting:
I know it’s hard to see so let me point out what I see. First the back has numerous wrinkles between waist and hip. It does fit smoothly and comfortably across the neckline upper back and armscyes. The side view shows the back creeping up, which is consistent with my evaluation I don’t have a sway back. If I had a swap back, those back wrinkles would exist but the side view would should an even or even drooping back hemline. I tried to place orange arrows on the front to indicate the lines which concern me. Both that and the side view are Judi-Jetson reminiscent. I can pull the front down so that the neckline lies smoothly across the upper chest. But the front wants to creep upwards and develop the buckling seen in the photo.
So I can see with a new fabrics that an issue has developed. The question is which issue? Is this a large tush issue? or a prominent tummy issue? I decide the way to be sure would be 2 alterations. The first alteration would open the side seams between hem and hip. If that doesn’t fix the issue, a second alteration to open the side seam all the way to the waist, would be made.
So what happened:
I opened the side seams only up to the hip. Obviously I need just a little more ease across the hip. This may have resulted from an error on my part. LC designed this blouse to have side vents. I sewed the side seams together all the way to the hem. Had I left the vents open, as she designed, I may not have known I needed a little more ease. That’s important, because I intend to use this pattern to help me fit the Ottobre sleeveless shell.