Monday, 14 October 2013

Completed: Sewaholic Alma Blouse

So, I pretty much lived in this blouse all summer and I'm sad that I'll have to put it away soon.

I made it back in the spring, and I wore it so much this summer. I *almost* have something new to post about, but I need to figure out what is up with my machine first (the threads keep getting tangled and I don't trust it with my buttonholes). That, and I need to find somewhere to buy buttons to cover. Anyways, I wore this when we had family over for Thanksgiving dinner yesterday, and I thought it would be good to post about it while I can still remember all the construction details. 

The pattern is the Sewaholic Alma Blouse, View B, in a size 0. The collar is meant for a contrasting fabric but I wanted it to be a little subtler so used the main fabric. The pattern is very well-drafted - there is even an upper collar and a lower collar so that the lower collar lies nicely underneath without the seam showing.

The fabric is a medium-weight cotton (I don't remember exactly what they called it) with 2% spandex, purchased locally for around $12 a metre. It was really easy to work with - even with the spandex, it was quite stable. It turned out to be a perfect weight for the shirt, and has softened up nicely in the wash.

I decided that, to save time, I wouldn't make a muslin, which backfired as per usual. I made my usual change of tapering down the shoulder seams and went right ahead cutting out the fabric. The fit was pretty good, but not great. I should have known better - Sewaholic patterns are designed for a B cup. I fiddled with the darts a bit and now the fit is good, but the darts are definitely in the wrong spot. They end only about a centimetre away from each other, which would be really obvious is a solid colour. Luckily the busy print hides them, but when I made this shirt again I will have to adjust them properly, and will probably try a FBA.

Other than that, the construction was pretty straightforward and I made no more changes. I successfully put in my second ever invisible zipper, which hasn't broken yet and that makes me really happy (I haven't had the best of luck with invisible zippers, such as with this dress).

Do you see that invisible zipper? Me neither.
For next time (there will be one!), there are a couple things I would do differently, other than adjusting the darts properly. I would probably do the under collar and facing in a lighter weight fabric because it's a little bulky at the shoulder seams, even with all the grading that I did. I might also take in the hips just a little bit. I'm not quite as pear-shaped as the pattern is designed for, and I think it could be a little narrower at the hips. The sleeves could also be just a touch narrower, but none of these are major fitting issues and it's very wearable.

Overall, though, I'm very pleased with this shirt. It's loose enough to be comfortable yet fitted enough to be very flattering. It looks great untucked with jeans, or tucked into a skirt with heels for a dressier look. My only regret is that this version isn't that great for fall, despite being in nice fall colours. With the sleeves and the collar, it's difficult to layer pieces over top, and it's too chilly to wear it on its own. Oh well, I got lots of wear out of it this summer.

One of the reasons I prefer skirts rather than pants is that I can hold them in pictures so my arms don't look so awkward...
If these pictures look better than usual, it's because my brother took them during the summer, and it just took me a while to write about it. (This also explains why I'm outside in a short-sleeved shirt, because there's no way I would do that with the chilly fall weather.)

Oh, and since today is Thanksgiving in Canada, I'd like to say thank you to all my readers and followers so far, and thanks for all the wonderful comments! Happy Thanksgiving!

Blouse: Sewaholic Alma
Jeans: Consignment, CJ by Cookie Johnson
Shoes: Consignment, Hego's


  1. Happy thanksgiving. Thanks for showing the blouse. I haven't made this pattern but definitely will for the summer. Lovely pcs

  2. I was recently debating on purchasing this blouse pattern, I I ended up ordering the Renfrew because of the chilly Seattle air.Yours looks great. I will get it next time I place a Sewaholic order.

    1. I'd definitely recommend it, although I've heard the Renfrew is great too. I haven't made it because I don't really like sewing with knits, but I probably will someday.

  3. This is a really pretty blouse! Nice work. I just came across your blog, so impressive! I wish I had started sewing at your age it is such a great skill to have.