Vintage-inspired neckline? Yes please!
I've been a long-time admirer of Jennifer Lauren Handmade patterns. I think she was one of the first pattern companies I came across when I first dipped my toe into the sewing waters. I absolutely loved the vintage-inspired aesthetic her patterns have - they had a nod to retro styles without being a pastiche. One hundred percent my cup of tea. But for some reason it's taken me this long to get around to making one of their patterns.
I spent my The Foldline birthday voucher on the Aisling Blouse pattern as I though it would be super practical for me and easily hackable, and already it's proving that.
I recently stocked this wonderful lemon fabric and knew immediately this would be perfect. I decided to make view A with the collar - I'm an utter sucker for a collar! - but I wanted to highlight it. I've seen quite a few makes of this blouse on Instagram where the blouse is made in a patterned fabric and the collar gets a bit lost in the print. I didn't want that - quite the opposite - I wanted to emphasise the collar, especially as it's such a pretty shape with that lovely square neckline.
I made two changes to the pattern - firstly to shorten the sleeves as I want this to be a summer blouse, and secondly to add a ruffle to the collar. I decided to only add ruffle to the long outside edge and not the short front edge. To create the ruffle I cut two strips of pink linen fabric (from my remnants stash), sewed them together to create one long strip and then ironed it in half lengthwise. I gathered the length of fabric using two rows of basting stitches and then sandwiched it between the outer and inner collar pieces.
The blouse came together super quickly. I found the neckline was relatively straightforward. For a great result make sure you pivot the needle the moment you sew past the collar - that way you'll get the square neckline to start exactly where the collar finishes. You also need to make sure you clip into the seam allowance at that corner to create a super neat corner when pressing.
The sleeves went in pretty easily without too many hiccups and then it was just the finishing touches of buttons. I timed my visit to the studio of Ethel & Joan perfectly - I went there to pick up my wholesale order but I took my unfinished blouse with me. Louise (who runs Ethel and Joan) helped me to choose the perfect buttons - the yellow doughnuts look like they were made for this blouse.
And voila! The Aisling Blouse was complete. I found it a super speedy, super enjoyable sew and I can see myself making a lot of these down the line, especially if decide to hack it.