I knew I wanted to wear white for election day, yesterday. I don't own a lot of white clothes. But, I wanted to do it for political, historical and feminist reasons.
I also wanted to try this Wrap Peplum Blouse from Stretch & Sew. It's number 325. The pattern also includes a half-circle skirt with a waistband and, even though it doesn't crow about it, a wrap dress.
I cut out the largest size (a bust size of 40), which is a little small for me, but my fabric is closer to 33% stretch, not 25% stretch, so I figured I would be able to get away with it.
After cutting out the sleeves, two fronts, and a back, I had EXACTLY enough fabric for one layer of the peplum. In the original pattern, the peplum is cut double and stitched and turned to form the bottom edge. I guess this is to give it more weight, but it also saves you from having to hem a shape that I can best describe as a swoopy wing. You see, the peplum is cut out all in one piece, so it wraps around the body and also has that sweet/cute curve on both fronts. It reminds me of ballet class. I ended up just serging that bottom edge, mostly to save time. I tried a rolled edge on the serger, but this fabric just wasn't having it.
You can see this above, but I abandoned the sleeves. I really wanted to like them, but they were just a little TOO 1974 for me. Poofs, gathers and pleats. All at once. A little too much for me. Also I didn't do a bicep adjustment so they would have been super-tight on top of all of that nonsense.
I skipped all of the facings and I wanted to use knit stay tape for the edges I needed to turn under and coverstitch. However, when I looked in my bag of tricks, I didn't have any in white! After pondering adding contrast-color bindings (I didn't even have enough scrap fabric for bindings), I decided to just press the edges under and coverstitch without any stay tape.
I'm very happy with the result. There is a little pulling at the underarm, but I think it's ok and I'd rather not add front darts on top of everything else. If I make it again, I'll substitute in armholes and sleeves from another pattern so that it can have t-shirt style sleeves. I may also straighten out the curved edges on the peplum, but I rather like them.
The length is perfect and even the waist length is perfect, which really matters for a wrap top. Someone needs to explain to me why I have to shorten the bodice on new patterns and I don't have to do it on vintage patterns. Have people really gotten that much taller in the last 40 years? Was Ann Person really just smarter than everyone else?
Some of the earlier Stretch & Sew patterns top out at a 38-inch or 40-inch bust. I'm thinking that Ann was a skinny Minnie (she mentions having to do a small bust adjustment in at least one of her books), so maybe she just didn't think about the larger sizes, at first. Later patterns have a wider size range.
P.S. - Heartbroken, today. I wrote the rest of this post yesterday. I'm never going to stop making things or teaching other people to make things. It's important to me.