This is Your Blouse on Drugs

My friend Erika is one size down from me, so we sometimes trade clothes back and forth. Often, that means I reap the dubious benefits of her family’s hand-me-downs. Like this cracktastic blouse:

Those ruffles are all kinds of wrong.

First off, who dresses like Ed Hardy meets Oscar Wilde? Aside from Erika’s mother-in-law, that is? And why are the ruffles and hem unfinished? The buttons are cheap crystal plastic that are almost impossible to get through the holes. I’m pretty sure E. took one horrified look at this and jammed it right into the bag she gave me. Most of that stuff went straight to the thrift store, but I kept this blouse for the stamped images:

This design is actually kind of awesome.

I’ll probably use them for appliqués.

In other news, I’ve made two t-shirts from Built by Wendy: Home Stretch. Both are complete and total wadders. First, I made the easy t-shirt with serged seams and hems. The fabric I used was burnout jersey from the pound shop, purchased only because I was curious about working with that type of thin material. In short, it’s a nightmare to sew — like gossamer and cobwebs, only less attractive:

The colors are better in real life, I think.

I made the medium and the shoulders are where I want them, but there is no shaping through the body and the differential feed tried to chew up the neckline and sleeves, so this isn’t even a wearable muslin. The neckline is ok but a little high.

So then I scooped out the front neckline using the XS size as a guideline, and made it again from a ribbed knit. Since I knew I couldn’t hem the rib knit without stretching, I made bands for the neckline, sleeves and hem. Everything wound up way too big:

It looks even worse on me, if that's possible.

The neckline is actually ok, and the shoulders do fit. The rest of this is a complete and total yuck. There’s a slight possibility that a 2-way jersey with less stretch and regular hems might work in this pattern, but I’m not sure. I’m going to set this project aside and cogitate for a bit….

From the Department of Completely Ridiculous, Yet Fun — your Friday video! If you want a challenge, Kim Harrison’s Dead Witch Walking describes a vampire bar doing a cowboy line dance to this song. Now, try to picture THAT:


Posted on April 6, 2012, in Friday Headbanging, sewing. Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Oh the ruffles. The ruffles! And bugger about the Tshirts…. I have a merino rib for a close fitting T but need to figure out how narrow to cut the body else it’ll stretch out. Did you have a stretch/recovery issue with the rib on your grey one or was it the line of the T pattern you didn’t like?

    And now all I can think of is a pack of vampires line dancing. Ta for that!! :o)

    • The rib didn’t have as much recovery as I thought, but this pattern is also designed more for 2-way stretch jersey and it shows. There’s not enough structure in the fabric to support the lines of the pattern.

      Vampires line dancing is awesome!

  2. Oh my… oh…. oh. Wow. To think there are multiples of that shirt out there in many sizes.

    I like the fabric from the first tshirt. Too bad it is such a pain to sew. Any chance a little rouching with elastic could add shaping (and design feature) to the t’s that are too big?

    • I thought about it, but I don’t like ruching (I have a thing about exposed elastic — it just screams cheap to me). My main problem with the first shirt is all the hems are messed up because my serger decided to be temperamental. So, I’m thinking I might try to fix the neckline and hems, but I’m not sure that the fabric will accept anything I do to it.

  3. That ruffled blouse is giving me emotional whiplash. part of me loves it (the 80’s high schooler) and part of me is rightly concerned…thats one cool clerical type.

    • I should have modeled it. My first thought was like yours, “Hey, that’s not too bad…I would have worn something like this back in the day…”

      Then I put it on and….no. No, honey, just….no.

  4. You know, I kind of weirdly like it (the first blouse). It’s so close to being awesome it’s almost painful.

    Which is not to say I’d wear it. But those will be some killer appliques. 🙂

    Good luck with the further muslining. I sometimes think I should keep different sizes on hand to swap out depending on the stretch of my fabric…

    • I definitely need different t-shirt patterns depending on the type of material. I only wish I had a machine that didn’t have tantrums when faced with a differential feed issue. Between four machines, including one coverstitch, I still don’t have a truly reliable knit hemmer. I’m sure at least part of that is operator error.

      The blouse is lovely on my dressmakers dummy. Trust me, the dummy wears it better than any real person would.

  5. Is it bad that I kinda like the horrible shirt?

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