mccalls 7899


DIY, fashion, process, sewing, styleMartha PorterComment
purple blouse front.jpg

As we ease into Fall Weather, I’ve reached into my closet for some of my favorite long sleeve blouses. I made this McCall’s 7899 in March, but never got around to taking decent photos. You can tell this piece is well loved by the tempura grease stains on the front (look closely, lol). I made this for our last trip to Japan and wore it a lot.

purple blouse from side.jpg

This pattern is simple and beautiful. I chose view D, with the encased elastic neckline and simple sleeve shape. This pattern is made for soft, drapey, slinky fabrics. I used silk charmeuse from one of my favorite shops in Midtown Manhattan, Exclusive fabrics. This print had a major printing flaw, so I cut around it and squeezed the top out of a scant 1.75 yards of 44” wide fabric. I sewed my usual Big 4 size 12, and lengthened the bodice 1” as usual. I also lengthened the sleeve, but that was unnecessary.

purple blouse french seams.jpg

This pattern is quite simple and doesn’t have many seams, so I used French seams throughout. This was good practice, it’s not my strong suit! I replaced the cuff with a 3/8” elastic cuff. I also replaced the facings (I hate facings, especially in silk) with a strip of bias binding - you only need about 12” to finish the neckline. Because the silk was so fussy on bias, I interfaced it with whisper light interfacing (also cut on bias), and it added the stability I needed. Sewing with charmeuse takes a lot of patience as it is one of the most slippery and wiggly fabrics out there, but wearing it feels so luxurious - always worth it!

Back of the blouse, featuring a simple neckline slit, pearl button from stash, and a simple thread loop closure.

Back of the blouse, featuring a simple neckline slit, pearl button from stash, and a simple thread loop closure.

puprle blouse front and sleeve.jpg

I reach for this blouse so often, I really need to make at least 2 more. It doesn’t take much fabric, feels appropriate for any occasion, and has the soft, feminine details I gravitate towards. The other views have a more involved, pleated sleeve, which would be beautiful in a solid color where you can really see all the small pleats that create volume (whereas in the view I made, the volume comes from using elastic). I really recommend this pattern, time to pull it out again and add it to the queue. XO, Martha