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The silk chrysanthemum blouse

1 July 2011, 13:58

As I discussed in my post on “pedestal fabrics” last week, I’ve had a ridiculously gorgeous silver and black chrysanthemum print silk in my stash ever since AllisonC gifted it to me two years ago when I was about to go into hospital.

But I’d brought it out again recently and thought about how I’d best like to wear it and I decided that I love and wear my silk blouses so much (and my birthday blouse in particular!) that I should sew this into a blouse to get the most wear and love out of this “pedestal fabric”!

In this case I chose to use the same pattern as my birthday blouse, Manequim Feb 2011 #158, because it fits great, I love the style, and I knew it worked well with a drapey silk.

You know what? I am so happy I took the plunge and cut into this fabric, because I just adore this blouse!

As before, I constructed this entirely with French seams (there’s only four, so it’s not like it adds much more time!) and I finished the neckline and sleeves using my method for a narrow bias edge.

You can really see the inverted triangular shape of this blouse in the side and back views. It’s big and blousy in the top, but skims the hips snugly, which makes it equally great for wearing over jeans or tucked into skirts.

Even though I’ve made this pattern twice in prints, I’m keen to make it again in a solid so the lovely asymmetric pleating detail shows up a bit more! It’s one of my favourite parts of this pattern and it only involves a small bit of extra thread basting to get everything to line up perfectly. But when the payoff is this great, what’s a few extra minutes?

We squeezed in this photoshoot at the end of a very busy day in a very busy week, so apologies that they’re a little dark (though it was past 9:30!). It just means to get to see one of my favourite aspects of living in our floating village – sunsets behind Tower Bridge…

And I probably shouldn’t be telling you this, but I can now reveal the secret of my success – Bosco helps me when I’m cutting and thread basting!

He’s not quite as handy as Petite Mignon, but he’s eager to learn and has already mastered the art of being a mobile pattern weight…

Edit: oh and if you fancy a peek at the state of my Future Permanent Sewing Room, look over here. Yes, I did say I’ve been busy!!)

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  1. It shows off the fabric perfectly! great job.

    Karen    Jul 1, 02:57 PM    #
  2. Beautiful blouse. I adore that fabric. So glad you used it. :)

    Elizabeth    Jul 1, 03:14 PM    #
  3. Stunning !!!!!!

    Lisa Penrice    Jul 1, 03:47 PM    #
  4. Beautiful blouse Melissa!

    P.S. Re: your new sewing room I’ve nearly finished sorting out my fold-down cutting when it’s done I’ll send you the info. re: measurements/special-hinges etc. :)

    Claire (aka Seemane)    Jul 1, 04:06 PM    #
  5. Oh, lovely top and lovely fabric! Both the tops you have made in this style are terrific. Gosh you do live in a scenic spot, though I had a double take when I realised it was still light at 9.30, I’d forgotten the light variation in the UK.

    Jacquie    Jul 1, 05:04 PM    #
  6. Lovely top. That was the perfect pattern to use. It is a simple style, easy to sew and lets the fabric take center stage.

    audrey    Jul 1, 06:16 PM    #
  7. I love the pattern you chose, it lets the fabric show off! Love the fabric too, beautiful blouse!

    — Olga    Jul 1, 06:17 PM    #
  8. Beautiful blouse Melissa!

    Claire (aka Seemane)    Jul 1, 06:32 PM    #
  9. Another beautiful top from this pattern! It’s a great base for a special fabric. The work you are doing on your sailing barge is amazing. I am impressed with you and your husband’s DIY prowess.

    Karin    Jul 1, 06:43 PM    #

    — cris rush    Jul 2, 02:00 AM    #
  11. I love this top, I’m glad you treated it simply, its a good lesson for us to let amazing fabric be its own showcase. It’s great seeing shots of your surroundings, whenever I cross Kew Bridge and see the houseboats there it makes me think of your blog :P

    Justine@polkadotpebble    Jul 2, 02:02 PM    #
  12. That’s a very pretty blouse. Love that print. You do have a bit of construction going on, don’t you? It will be wonderful when done.

    Gwen    Jul 3, 02:10 PM    #
  13. Love the fabric. Kitties are the best, they are the only animal that domesticated themselves according to National Geographic as told by my sister.

    — Karen M.    Jul 4, 07:16 AM    #
  14. PS: Happy 4th of July!!

    — Karen M.    Jul 4, 07:19 AM    #
  15. Gorgeous blouse! Great choice of pattern to show off this beautiful print.
    And I love the sunset you shared behind Tower Bridge.
    I see Bosco is quite the little helper as well! :) P’tite Mignonne also comes in very handy now as blocking device for my knitting FOs.

    Isabelle    Jul 4, 12:45 PM    #
  16. Gorgeous! It can be very hard finding pretty prints in lovely fabrics, I find – most of the nice prints I find seem to be on slightly-too-sturdy cotton or indeterminate blends sigh

    I probably should stick to solids, seeing as that’s what I tend to wear most anyway. heavy sigh

    — anwen    Jul 4, 09:14 PM    #
  17. Fabulous, that top really does show off the print perfectly, I should start sending you swatches and you can tell me what pattern to use. I do miss those long summer evenings…

    allisonC    Jul 5, 07:19 AM    #
  18. Loos fabulous, Melissa!! Well done for both the blouse and the courage to cut the silk!

    VallyP    Jul 7, 08:10 PM    #
  19. Aloha, my name is Lovely. I am resident in Hawaii now. I looked on your site about blouse that I want to buy it so bad! My blouse size is Medium.

    — Lovely    Apr 3, 11:40 PM    #
  20. Gorgeous top. Only just stumbled across your blog via diycouture and it’s lovely.

    Vanessa    Mar 25, 09:19 AM    #
  21. Hi I saw this silk chrysanthemum blouse. Where can I make an order? Can you give me more information, please? I really want to buy this chrysanthemum because it’s my birthday of November. Please respond an email back as soon as possible. Thanks.

    — Lovely-Joy Lopez    Aug 13, 10:16 AM    #

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