6. The Old Is New Blouse

Pattern: The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook – Our Blouse

Fabric: 1 yard polka dot poly blend, 1 yard silk/cotton voile

Notions: A smidge of 1/4″ elastic


What I love about documenting my sewing is it’s often forced me to take a second look at shapes and lines that I’ve previously dismissed. I am so in love with this blouse and if I’d seen it on a rack in the store I would never have tried it on. I’ve always thought that peplum blouses like this would be unflattering on me and draw negative attention to my hips but after spending a week diligently working on it,  I was determined to find a way to love it. I tried on at least a dozen outfits to find ensembles that weren’t just acceptable but some of my favorites this year. The best part is it forced me to dig out this skirt that I’ve had for ages but only wore once. The blouse breathed new life and possibilities into the garment and this revelation is going to do major damage on my ability to get rid of old clothes!

The blouse was a joy to make. I cut a 38 and I’m pleased with the overall fit. When I make the blouse again, I’ll take off about 3/4″ at the back waist and remove the same amount in the form of a french dart in the front. This is something that I’m learning I need to do for princess seams but luckily the gathering at the waist hides these issues. The only major change that I made to the pattern was to get rid of the side seam zipper. Since the elastic and tie-waist left quite a bit of room, I felt like a zipper would be rather silly.

This is the first long sleeve blouse I’ve made and it’s actually the first long sleeve woven shirt in my closet. I’m not sure how this happened but I’ll continue to work on correcting this closet-error. That being said, I’m really thrilled with my work on the set in sleeves and gathering in particular. I always worry about getting the gathering even on each side (especially gathering that’s so prominent) and I took extra caution when completing this step by hand basting the sleeves in first. In fact, yesterday’s post shows that I hand basted throughout the project and it really helped to keep the shoulder “lining” stable and in place.

I’m pleased with the results and look forward to using this pattern again. I think there are so many opportunities to make a really unique garment with these lines. Has anyone else made up this blouse yet?


16 Responses to “6. The Old Is New Blouse”

  1. Yay! I’ve been wanting to make this and yours is so pretty, I may cut it out this weekend (when I’m supposed to be spending time with my family!)

  2. ooh thats gorgeous, and i love it with the grey skirt too – don’t you love re-discovering clothes!

  3. Wow – impeccable! Even without close-ups I can see that you did an amazing job on this! I really appreciated the nudge re: hand basting – I did it for the sleeves on my latest (failed) blouse, and it’s the one thing about it I was really happy with.

    I was just looking at your wardrobe list again, and it made me curious about how much wear your first 5 garments are getting? I’m finding myself not wearing my favorite hand-mades a lot, because I don’t want to mess them up!

    • Oh, Gail, I’m so sad to hear that your blouse didn’t fit because that color would look beautiful on you! At least we both learned a good lesson in the powers of hand basting.
      I’m glad that you mentioned the first 5 garments because I’ve been trying to pull them out and remix them recently. I’m especially excited to pair this blouse with the silk noil dress that I made first. I’ll post photos when I wear new outfits with the garments so keep your eyes peeled for that.

  4. Look at you, styling lady! The blouse turned out so nicely, and I love the entire ensemble. Well worth the hand basting & slow sewing. The gathers look perfectly symmetrical, and the peplum is adorbs. I struggle with the idea of them, too, but am slowly realizing that at the right length, they can be flattering despite my hips. Props for shopping in your own closet 🙂 It may make it difficult to purge, but when you find a long-lost winning garment, so worth the space suck. Maybe I’m justifying my own old clothes hoarding!

  5. How lovely and stylish! It looks great on you. I had the same idea about peplums but now I think I’ll try one, because your blouse is so cute. Once again, thanks for the inspiration!

  6. Beautiful blouse! Well done.

  7. Your blouse is beautiful. I received this book for Christmas and I’m eager to make this pattern. I could see endless versions of this one.

  8. I absolutely love love love this top! I think it’s my fave of the winter wardrobe you made.


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