I have some exciting news!
I’ve been selected as a contestant in the
I’m so happy to be involved in a well run sewing competition complete with knowledgeable judges and fabulous prizes. I had been anxiously waiting to see what our first challenge would be, and ta da — It’s the True Bias Sutton blouse!
I’ve seen this pattern around the SBC, but it never spoke to me as I seldom wear tops like this. I’m a dress girl and rarely wear pants or jeans, and this seems like the perfect top to wear with some jeans. However, I was up to the challenge and always look forward to sewing something new and different that may not be my personal style and trying out new-to-me silhouettes.
Voila, here’s my floaty summer Sutton!
My plan for this competition is to try to use fabrics from my stash for each challenge that I participate in. I first made this top with silk voile and rose patterned lace, but wasn’t that enamored with it, so I went to Plan B. [note: you can click on each photo for larger, more detailed views]
I envisioned a breezy summer top that is light and airy and very summery. It’s been over a 100 degrees here in California almost every day and the looser the fit and lighter the fabric the better. I thought it would be interesting to have the fabrics contrast and a lace or eyelet fabric seemed to be perfect to showcase the pattern design. I used a lightweight linen that I picked up on the remnant floor at Britex Fabrics in San Francisco and paired it with cotton lace eyelet from Joann’s. Intermixed with my base and contrast fabrics is some eyelet insertion lace, also from Britex. My insertion lace is actually meant for a future project and was bought especially to match another fabric, but I purchased more than I needed and should have enough for both projects.
I graded this pattern up to about a 22/24, lengthened it by 3″ and widened the sleeves. I also deepened the neckline and flared it slightly more at the hips per my preference.
As I used insertion lace, I couldn’t sew the recommended French seams on the yoke and instead used bias tape. It makes the seams a little bulkier, but provides a super clean finish. I originally intended to use rayon seam binding, but found I didn’t have any that matched. I don’t know why I have a plethora of colors and yet no white/ivory… I did consider making bias tape with my linen, but felt that the packaged tape was a better option as this linen frays so easily and is not the best material for bias tape. There is self bias tape on the neckline as the pattern suggests.
My plan for this blouse was to keep the designer’s style and the design’s integrity intact while doing my own interpretation of the pattern. I like the idea of using the pattern pieces to add some contrast to a solid color and thought lace would be the perfect fabric for the yoke. This pattern calls for light fabrics with drape and my lightweight linen was the perfect candidate, albeit a sheer [and wrinkly!] one.
I really love heirloom quality techniques like sewing insertion lace into a garment. It adds some unique details and makes things that you sew even more special. My inspiration for using these laces was late 19th/early 20th century garments from the Edwardian era as well as light cotton afternoon dresses and negligees of the 1920’s.
This blouse wasn’t easy for me to photograph outside, especially as it was 105 during this photoshoot with so much summer sun. I had planned on taking photos early in the day before the heat rolled in, but had many things to do at sun up and didn’t get to it. It’s interesting how my blouse appears to be a simple top, but with a closer inspection shows the intricate detail of the lace and the techniques I used.
- Top: True Bias Sutton blouse in lace eyelet and linen, made by me
- Jeans: Lucky
- Shoes: Sam Edelman
- Sunglasses: D&G