This was my first make of 2019. Time has been very limited to sew lately, so I do my best to plan my projects ahead in order to maximise success. This particular project had a rather long gestation, as I wanted to do justice to this beautiful print from Lise Tailor. This fabric is so incredibly beautiful and special in real life, and it took me a long time to settle on a pattern. I eventually settled on a Deer and Doe pattern. Deer and Doe is one of the pattern companies I respect most, and with their attention to detail and exacting standards, I knew there was very little risk of this project going wrong as far as the pattern itself was concerned.
Pattern: Deer and Doe Airelle Blouse. I feel this is one of the lesser-known patterns by Deer and Doe, but it is a really good one! It is described on D&D’s website as a ‘subtly fitted blouse with Chelsea collar and shoulder yoke. Version A with 3/4 sleeves, version B with short sleeves.’
Design elements I particularly like: This elegant yet understated blouse is perfect for work. It is rather long – especially on my short figure, and you can probably see on the pictures that I did a very deep hem; but this works well with more fitted trousers. I love bust shaping achieved through gathering at the shoulder yoke.
Size: I cut a size 38 following the pattern measurements, but the blouse is really loose fitting on me. It still works, but next time I might cut out a size smaller.
- Besides my usual fitting alterations (especially cutting the back narrower than the front), I redrafted the collar to be more rounded.
- I also added rust-coloured piping to the shoulders and cuffs.
Fabric: The fabric is of course the star of the show! I was so excited when Lise told me last year that she was designing fabrics, and each of her prints and colourways are incredible. This one is ‘Falling Flowers perle’, which has a very subtle blush background. There is now another version of this colourway over a slightly pinker background and more subdued colours all around (‘Beige rosé’), also really lovely, but I adore the version I got with higher contrast. Rusts and oranges don’t usually work well with my cool complexion, so I am very excited to be able to wear a top with orange and rust accents thanks to the pink background.
The fabric itself is a viscose crepe, which I had never handled before. I don’t usually work with crepe as it is almost always produced out of synthetic material, so this was an enlightening and welcome experience. The specific weave of crepe produces a very drapy, yielding, almost elastic fabric, which gathers beautifully.
It is definitely trickier to handle as it is so supple and slippery, so this is not a type of fabric I would recommend to beginners. You need a good amount of pinning – I used ultra fine pins and microfibre needles, per Lise’s recommendation in her shop, to avoid distorting the weave. This fabric is very fine, in every meaning of the word – thin, delicate, and first-rate.
Final thoughts: I have loved wearing this blouse since the beginning of 2019. My only regret is interfacing the collar and cuffs as per the pattern instructions – despite using lightweight interfacing, I feel it adds a bit too much stiffness to this delicate fabric. That is however a very minor concern.
I just love the way this blouse flows! 😂
Disclaimer: I purchased the fabric myself, but the pin was a gift from Lise.