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My Fall for Cotton Blouse

I entered my first sewing challenge! It was the Fall for Cotton Challenge put on by Lucky Lucille and By Gum By Golly.  I haven’t quite mastered the whole editing-the-sidebar thing, so I’m leaving off the button until I figure that out….  

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I used this excellent tutorial from Coletterie to make the surface cording for the front.  It’s pretty easy to do and creates such a beautiful effect. I had a hell of a time turning the cording inside out until my mother pointed out that I hadn’t trimmed the seam allowance down enough (I was at home for the weekend).  If only I could always benefit from her sewing wisdom….

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The pattern is the Bow Tied Blouse from Gertie’s Book for Better Sewing.  The blouse itself is really easy to make, though my attempts to draw a new neckline made it a bit more off the shoulder than I was intending…. so I won’t be wearing it to the office anytime soon, but it works fine for something more formal.

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I created the design by just pinning the cording directly onto the blouse (see my extremely professional pillow dress form above ha ha….).  The first half was easy….making it symmetrical was the real struggle.  I think next time I will create the design on paper first, and just turn it over for the mirror image so that it’s perfectly symmetrical and draw it onto the fabric with chalk.  Seems like I spent hours trying to get those loops the same size….

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Sarai’s tutorial suggests hand stitching the cording down from the front, but I found it much easier to do from the back.  The only problem with that was that my pins kept slipping out.  My  mother had the excellent idea of using painters tape to hold the cording in place while I stitched it down.  It worked pretty well- though in the end I used a combination of tape and pins.

The fabric is an organic cotton sateen from organiccottonplus.com. I bought it after reading a review of it on Lucky Lucille.  It really lived up to her glowing review.  I also bought some of the same sateen in navy which I used to make my second Belladone, but this color (Baltic Sea Blue) had a much more beautiful buttery sheen than the navy.

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