Friday, November 30, 2012

Peplum blouse, pattern review

During my recent visit to Britex I purchased a beautiful stretch silk floral fabric, the most expensive piece of fabric I've ever purchased (but so worth it!).  I only got a small amount, with some kind of sleeveless shell in mind.  After making the Minna blouse by Salme patterns, their Peplum blouse caught my eye.  E-downloads make those impulse pattern buys oh-so easy!
I made not one, but two muslin versions of the Peplum blouse.  The first was so awful that after massive fit and style alterations, I had a to make a second before committing to my special fabric.  I'm still not 100% in love with the fit (pulling at the shoulders and bust in a weird way), but I typically wear these types of blouses with cardigans, so no biggie.
Ready for lecture!
Okay, so for the review.  I love the style of this blouse.  Love the front and back keyhole, love the peplum, love the interesting way the lining is sewn in.  But man, I wouldn't suggest taking on this project without a good understanding of fitting a pattern to your own body.  As mentioned in previous posts, I have a small bust and am relatively straight from waist to hips.  The pattern appears to be designed for a woman with a very large bust to waist ratio, so after measuring myself and the paper pattern (there was only a garment measurement for the bust), I graded out from bust to waist and made all of the darts shallower.
The shoulders were too narrow for my apparent football-player body, so I had to adjust those as well, grading out several sizes.  Deepening the arm scythe may improve the fit a bit, now that I'm looking at my pattern alterations...
My final front bodice piece looked like this after my changes with similar alterations made to the back bodice:
I had a suspicion that the peplum would have too much flounce for my taste, so I slashed and reduced evenly around the peplum.  Here's the before:
And the less-flouncy after:
 Love that my peach necklace matches perfectly!
 Here's the back view.  I had to extend the button loop, because of my broad shoulders.

 Side view of the peplum, and invisible side zipper:

The bodice is lined with nude Bemberg (and I think I still have enough left to line a dress!):
Overall, I'm happy with the final product.  I will wear it, which indicates my satisfaction, but there are still improvements to be made to the fit.  Mostly, I'm just happy that my expensive fabric purchase amounted to something worth wearing!


  1. Nicole, you amaze me. It's a lovely finish, and looks great with your necklace and cardigan! The more I see of your alterations, the more terrified I am of making clothes for myself again. Great job, really. Very pretty fabric.

  2. Beautiful! I love it with your necklace.

  3. Very pretty, and good on you for actually cutting the good fabric rather than hoarding it for ever like the rest of the world seems to do :)

    I'm tempted by that pattern now too, its perfect for increasing my work wardrobe. I'd never heard of that site before by they have some good ideas.

  4. your top is beautiful. love the fabric.

  5. This turned out great! I just love the fabric :)
    I'm nominating your blog for The Liebster Award.

  6. Hi! I am sooo glad I found youre blog! ;) You make such pretty things! All youre outfits are so wearable, and somewhat basic, but you spike them up whit bright colors:) And I love that you sew for your children to! That is always a great inspiration:) I have allso bought this patter, but was a little freaked out after I read the instructions. And now, maybe even more...:s
    But I made two versions of the Milla blouse, wich I LOVE! Please, take a look at my blog:) I will be following yours:)