Category Archives: New Look

Anna Sui Silk Peasant Blouse Final

I finished up the blouse last night and I’m very pleased with the way it turned out. I really love this pattern! It’s wonderful to have something light and airy wafting around you on a steamy day. Now I think I need a pair of white jeans to go with this.


I made this version 3.5″ shorter than the others. It not only looked better shorter but it will also go nicely with my white shorts.

Here’s a closeup of the bodice. I like a little bead or something finishing the cord ends. For some reason, the seam looks a bit wonky in the photo – probably from me adjusting it on the dressform. Why is it that you always see things in photos that you miss in real life?


Not sure what I’ll work on this weekend. I’ll have to think about that this afternoon. Maybe something where I can use the new binder…


Filed under Fabric, New Look

Anna Sui Silk Peasant Blouse III

I worked on the blouse bodice last night. I decided to add a 2″ strip of the contrast to the upper bodice and then bind the center front edges.


Yesterday, Jan pointed out the adorable yellow birds on a wire in the coordinating print. I wish I’d read her reply before I got this far:


Yes, ladies and gentlemen, it’s yellow gravity-defying sideways-sitting birds. I really don’t want to redo this! I will just hope that, like me, most people won’t recognize what they are. What do you think?

Because I used bias binding at the center front I needed some other way to close up the lower section since I wasn’t able to stitch it closed the conventional way. Ordinarily, I’d just leave it open but t’s too darn hot to have to wear a cami! I found these vintage mother-of-pearl buttons in my collection and used them to stitch the opening closed. Because silk chiffon is delicate, I backed the opening with a strip of bias handstitched to the binding.


Filed under Fabric, New Look

Anna Sui Silk Peasant Blouse II

I dreamt about this blouse all night, mostly about the sleeves. Happily, I had a little free time today and was able to get them finished. I had already planned out which part of the coordinate I’d be using as a hem band. I chose an area that had black at the top so that the French seam would not show through the chiffon. Because the fabric is so sheer, using a doubled band wasn’t possible.

The bottom of the sleeve is curved so I slightly eased the straight band at the seam.


I had planned to use a simple narrow hem but then I thought, why not make it a little more special with a bias binding? I cut the binding 1 3/8″ wide and used my 1 1/4″ binder. Because the fabric is so silky, I knew it would narrow a bit as it went through. Once you master your sewing machine attachments (practice, practice, practice) they make your life so easy! I bound both sleeve hems in less than 10 minutes, including cutting the bias.



All of this work was done flat and then a French seam was sewn at the underarm. Here’s the finished product:


Next I’ll be figuring out how to incorporate more of the coordinating fabric onto the bodice. The sheerness of the fabric complicates everything just a little bit!

Parting Shot: My best friends just returned from Europe and, knowing how much I love this sort of thing, brought me back some hand-made soaps they found in an open-air market. It smells heavenly and it’s wrapped in the Nice sports page!



Filed under Fabric, New Look

Silk Georgette Peasant Blouse

Here it is, done but for the main hem and a few finishing touches. I meet my girlfriends for dinner on Thursday and really wanted to wear this so I completely blew off my housework and laundry on Sunday!


Not only is this blouse really pretty on, it also goes together so quickly! The most time-consuming part is making the neckline casing (it’s turned in twice so there are no raw edges visible). The rest goes fast, even if you make French seams.

I made very thin bias tubing for the neckline. Originally, I had made a wider cord (about 1/4″) but it wanted to twist and turn inside the casing so I removed it. To make the very thin tubing I used the edge of my straight-stitch foot as a guide and then left enough of a seam allowance to fill out the tube for a nice rounded effect. I’m glad I took the time to redo it because it looks much nicer.


Tomorrow I’ll finish the hem and then start planning my next project. Maybe something vintage! Definitely something cool – it’s getting hotter and stickier by the minute!


Filed under Fabric, New Look

New Look 6870

It has been hotter than Hades the past few weeks and I’ve been craving some loose, whispy tops instead of my usual body-conscious styles. I do love a peasant blouse and have quite a lot of patterns to choose from, both vintage and contemporary.

This one from New Look immediately caught my eye because it isn’t too voluminous. I made View B.



I started with a size 8 and tissue-fitted the pattern. I was really surprised that I didn’t appear to need a full-bust adjustment. The only alteration I needed was a sway-back tuck. Still, I wanted to make a trial garment before cutting into my beautiful silk georgette. I’ve had this black folk-art floral in my collection for quite a number of years. I bought it in Hialeah with my friend Elaine and my late friend Barbara – that’s how I know it must be at least 6 years old. It was sold as rayon but I had my doubts about that. A burn test revealed that it is indeed polyester but it did pass the breathability test, probably due to the open weave of the fabric. If you want to see if a synthetic will breathe simply blow through the fabric lightly.

The only change I made to the pattern was to eliminate the neckline elastic and button/loop closure. Instead, I used a self-fabric bias tube.


Here is the back. Next time, I will probably eliminate the ties.


This top goes together very quickly and will work well with both pants and shorts. I’m really happy with the fit: loose but not baggy.

I think I’ll give it the wearability test later today and then cut into this beautiful silk georgette that I purchased from Textile Studios a few summers ago.


I don’t know how much sewing time I’ll have this week as work has been so busy! Which is why I don’t feel too bad about neglecting my household chores and spending time in my sewing room this weekend. 🙂

And, as an aside, if you were thinking about going to see the new Harry Potter movie, don’t bother. I was extremely disappointed!


Filed under Fabric, New Look


I’ve made four new dresses in the past few weeks – three of them with fabric from Gorgeous Fabrics! You’ve already seen the Kimono Dress I made last month, here are a couple of work dresses from New Look 6429. I had originally made this pattern a few years back when it was first released. I don’t know why I waited so long to make it again – it’s a real gem. This is quickly becoming a favorite for work because I don’t have to fuss with it at all, just toss it on and go. I’ve made three short-sleeved/collared versions so far this month and am planning on one long-sleeved version before I give it a rest. If you haven’t tried this pattern yet, what are you waiting for? The cut is sublime and it goes together in a snap.


This print was a bit of a challenge to match but I’m happy with how it turned out.


I used the border for the collar, cuffs and neckline binding (which you can’t see here).


No matching here, this one went together in a few hours.


I used Palmer/Pletsch Sheer to interface the collars on both dresses.


I also made another version of New Look 6648 (fabric from Gorgeous Fabrics, of course!). I absolutely adore the sleeves on this version. And, yes, it is positively x-rated without a cami underneath. 😉 I did discover that this is just perfect over a bikini when you want to cover up just a bit – much better than a big baggy t-shirt.




Filed under Fabric, New Look

New Look 6648 again!

You may have noticed that I often make a pattern again right away. See, when I find a pattern I really like I find it helpful to go ahead and tweak it while everything is still fresh in my mind. Often I do this after wearing the initial garment because some needed changes are not apparent until then.


After wearing the first top last night I decided to bring the neckline in 1″ on each side and raise it 1/2″. I also decided to take the hip band in 1″. Notice that I once again omitted the ruching on the hip band – I want to look as trim there as I can to balance out the volume of the top. The fabric (now sold out) is from Gorgeous Fabrics, of course! I plan on wearing this out with my girls tonight – hopefully no other changes will be needed. I want it PERFECT when I cut out the silk jersey.

I’m still searching for the purse pattern I was working on, sigh. If you ever need something hidden in such a way that no one will find it, call me. In the meantime I’ll probably keep myself occupied by working on the pattern for the Stripe-A-Licious Top so it will be ready to go when the fabric arrives. Once I finish that it’s back to the poor neglected Riviera Tee. I had originally planned on using the Paint Splashes Jersey for it and now I can’t decide on a substitute.


Filed under Fabric, New Look