Sunday, 17 January 2016

Completed: Another Floral Pendrell

Hello! I did once threaten to make an army of Sewaholic Pendrell Blouse, so this is the latest. It's made in a lovely lightweight rayon.

This was a really simple make, construction wise. The decision making behind it was a bit more complex though:  I used this make to test my attempt to move the princess seam of the Pendrell blouse (which I have made a few times before.. I love it!). I wanted to move the seam from the shoulder to the side bust.
This bit was NOT simple, as I spent a long time deliberating on how to do this. I previously made  Butterick 5526 as a shirt, which has a side-bust princess seam. I debated on using the shirt pattern, the Pendrell, or a combo of both.

Basically, I just wanted a shell top with a side bust seam. (Why? Just for style variations!) Having already made Butterick 5526, I thought this surely was the answer, as it already has a side bust princess seam! But I was unhappy with the fit (even after spending so much time trying to fix it). Eventually I concluded that it wasn't worth my time trying to fix the fit on the Butterick shirt.  The fit is horrible compared to my Pendrell top!

So I simply altered the pendrell, and it was pretty easy once I decided on it. I just closed up the shoulder dart by taping the pieces together, and then drew on my own side bust seam by eye. I made sure to add notches so they would sew together nicely, and made sure the seam would sew together without too much easing in the side bust.
I was looking at the pictures of my previously-made Butterick shirt and thought it made me look a little droopy in the bust.  Well no wonder, check out the comparison in the side bust pieces!

Left: Butterick   Right: Pendrell. I think Pendrell looks like a nicer smoother curve, and the Butterick looks too low in the bust point.
ANYWAY, I know you can't really see the seams in this make, but that's what made it so ideal for testing; if it was a bit off it wouldn't really show! Haha. But I'm quite happy with it anyway.

When I got the pattern out, I saw that I'd previously penciled in an armhole alteration to lower it, but I'd not cut the paper off.  I thought "okay Jo-of-the-past, I trust you", and cut it off. And now the armhole is too low! SELF-PRANKED! I can't believe it, lol! It's still wearable though.
Next time I will re-raise it.

You can kinda see it's low here... kinda.

Something I found helped the front princess seam IMMENSELY was just the simple act of pressing it towards centre. At first I pressed it towards the side seam and when I tried it on I thought I might have to tweak it a lot; it looked a bit wavy and misshapen. But simply re-pressing it towards centre fixed everything!! I see why now too; it's because the seam allowance can relax, instead of getting compressed and bunched into the side bust, which is smaller than the seam allowance. I hope that makes sense! Just look at the shape of the pattern pieces and you'll see!

I feel like I'm having a much easier time of sewing the bias facings around necklines and armholes these days, practice makes perfect eh? My tip for you: Understitching is good! Most instructions I have read don't have this step, but I find it super helpful. It keeps everything where you want it, so the pressing and top stitching steps are so much easier. 
Another thing I've done now that I'm 100% happy with my pattern is to reduce the neckline's and armhole's seam allowances to 6mm. You're going to have to trim it off anyway, so why not make life easy from the get-go? The sewing is easier too! Just be careful with keeping notches shallow  ;)

Oh, and I rehemmed this polyester crepe vintage skirt I made ages ago... like when I first started blogging (so long ago!). It was a bit long which I felt wasn't that flattering. I shortened it so I'd get more wear out of it.. I had also let out the waistband to make it less tight a while ago which means the waistband is less than ideal as there is now no overlap. Lol. I'd really like to upgrade this to a nice wool crepe skirt one day so I can fix all the odd bits about this one!

Here are some shots of it untucked. I have noticed the hem is too long in the back on previous Pendrells, but I never fixed it as I don't like it untucked anyway.

Ooh, unflattering.

Anyway, I know this has been a wordy post (mine usually are!), but I just wanted continue a conversation on something Karen of Did You Make That? brought up recently. She called to abolish what she called "ablogogising" which she defines as an apologetic tone found on blogs. However, she did mention that pointing out issues in order to share constructive information was worthwhile.

I really don't mind highlighting my errors, in fact it's a major part of my process! I'm committed to sharing my imperfections because I want to be a real, honest blog.

I don't self-critique because I'm inviting my readers' judgement, I do it because I love to share what I've learned. I want to constantly improve and invite discussion on how to do that.
I will admit though, back in time I did have a much more negative outlook on myself, so I think Karen's post is a valuable reminder to us all to be aware of the messages we are telling ourselves....Essentially, we have to critique our self-critique!

This isn't a rebuttal of Karen's words, as I know we are on the same page. I just wanted to clarify that my own self-critique doesn't come from a place of negativity.

I love reading my fellow sewers' blogs and I hope nobody takes Karen's words in the wrong way. I would hate to see a whitewash of anything perceived as "negative". Blog posts which omit all the mistakes and learning opportunities contain no substance. I'm here for more than pretty pictures!

Anyway, that's my two cents. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this! And thanks to Karen for bringing up this interesting topic!

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