The year of the sleeve! (Part II)

I can't remember how this blouse came about really. Normally I think about and plan a project for a little while before sewing it, but that wasn't really the case with this blouse, it just happened.

I think that after my Dove blouse I wasn't ready to call it a day with the sleeve trend, so I decided to make another top with a sleeve detail. I was making an order at Minerva Crafts for a bunch of other fabrics and into my order slipped a mere metre of this sunshine yellow viscose challis. This is so not my colour, but I couldn't resist. And I have no regrets.

I wanted a quick and dirty make, and decided I'd sew the Grainline Scout tee and improvise when I got to the sleeves.

I cut out the pattern pieces and lengthened the sleeve piece by 15 cm or so. Possibly a bit more, not sure, I eyeballed it. I didn't enjoy cutting this fabric at all. Viscose doesn't stay in place while it's being cut, and I had all those daisy chains to line up both length and width-wise. I don't have any fool-proof way for doing this other than going slow and checking and double checking that the pattern is lined up.

The sewing was a whole different story. This is where my new sewing machine really showed off! Viscose challis frays like nobody's business, so I've always found finishing seams a pain when sewing with viscose. But my new machine has a double overedge stitch which looks a lot like an overlocker stitch, and it completely eliminates fraying. It's a very slow stitch to sew, but so, so worth it. I ended up finishing all seams this way.

Also, my old machine didn't do a wide range of stitch lengths, so sewing long basting stitches along the sleeve curvature to gather sleeves in order to ease them in was never quite as successful as I wished. This machine though, no problem! Has great long stitches, making easing in sleeves easy peasy.

I've sewn a couple of Scout tees already, so the pattern was not new to me. It is a delightful little pattern, so easy and adaptable. The finished look will really depend on the chosen fabric, from structured and modern in a stiffer fabric, to floaty and relaxed in a lightweight fabric. Also, it's super-hackable. I've made four Scouts in total (incl this one) and three of them were hacks. Two of them I made in two separate fabrics, by splitting the front and back bodice parts in two and creating something like a yoke. And this one...just lengthened the sleeves and added on frilly bits at the end.

Speaking of the frilly sleeves, I made them by cutting out two rectangles that measured lengthwise double the length of the sleeve hem. The width of my rectangles was determined by how much fabric I had left as I only bought one metre (and trust me, it was a squeeze). I basted one of the long edges of each rectangle, and gathered it until it was the same length as the sleeve edge. Pinned, sewed to the sleeve pieces before I attached them to the body of the blouse, and carried on sewing it as per the pattern instructions.

Because my fabric is so thin and fine, I did rolled hems (by machine) on all hems. There's loads of tutorials online for this, but I like this one by Threads Magazine.

I have to say that I'm loving this blouse a lot more than I expected. Don't you love when that happens? When something turns out better than you thought it would? I'm loving it! Can't wait for some warm weather to start wearing it!

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