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This is something that does not happen very often ‘me making a toile’. This one happened because I did not want to ruin the fabric I was given to make my #MCBN (MinevaCrafts Blogger Network) project for July ( for more details about my project for July please check out the link here).
For the blouse as the pattern envelope only has the dress version modelled by a person, I wanted to check the fit and length of the actual blouse on me.
Some of you might know that I am not a huge fan of making a toile/muslin to check fit. So the next best thing is a wearable toile/muslin. For this one, I had enough fabric (cotton poplin) left from when I made the Valley blouse last year for the #SewMyStyle2017 challenge.
I tend to decide the size to make based on the finished garment measurements because Simplicity patterns have way to much ease for my liking and if I use their sizing whatever I make ends up too big on me. For this top, I felt that a size 10 will be the best for me. Usually, I shorten the bodice pieces above the bust by 1.3 cm which makes the armholes smaller and raises the bust to the correct position for me. I did this on this top as well. At this point, I did not think I might need to lengthen the bodice because usually, I have to shorten everything to fit my petite frame.
I stabilised the neckline edges using iron on bias tape instead of stay stitching.
The pattern suggests you use bias tape/stripes cut on the bias to finish off the neckline and armholes. However, I did not want to use contrasting bias tape or cut stripes on the bias when I could use the facings to finish off the neckline and armhole edges. This was easily achieved because there is a seam in the centre back. For this one I stitched the shoulder and side seams on both the garment and facing first, leaving the centre-back free. Then added the facing and turned over to understitch it in place to avoid it peaking through to the right side.
After that, I finished the centre back seam.
But the facing was still flapping about and not staying in place. So, I stitched the seam allowances together on the facing and on the garment for the length of the facings on the centre back and side seams. This means you cannot see the stitching, but your facings stay put.
At this point, I tried the top on and realised it will be too short, so I used a 0.7 cm hem allowance (width of the edge overlocked and turned over once).
The top is quite breezy and I love wearing this in this weather because a little breeze cools me down.
It’s enough to raise my shoulders a little and my midsection is on show. I remedied this by lengthening my next make by 5 cm.
I am glad I did a wearable toile for this pattern. Although the top is a bit too short, it is still wearable. No one will see my midsection if I wear it with a high waisted skirt or trouser. All is good when it ends well even if it’s not according to the plan.