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makes: deer & doe mélilot blouse

Happy Easter weekend a tous! As Cadbury creme eggs are nowhere to be found in Germany, I’m celebrating by posting my first completed Make Nine project instead: the Deer & Doe Mélilot This was a relatively simple sew which turned a bit complicated, mostly due to the fact that I decided to sew simultaneously and had to keep rethreading my sewing machine every ten minutes, that the sleeve length I promised my mum in her version just didn’t want to play ball, and that I ignored a pretty vital instruction. But, in general, I’m very happy with the two end results! Let’s have a look.

melilot bobbins and dictionaries

Here’s #1: my version! This is the cuff-sleeved version, but with the rounded collar of the long-sleeved. I also opted to only put one pocket on, as I am not an enormous fan of all the extra fabric around my already decently-sized chest area.

I promise those button placket ends are the same length in real life.

According to the pattern envelope, most of me fit in a 42, but my hips wouldn’t stand a chance in it (story of my life), so I graded out to a 44 below the waist. In retrospect, I’m not totally sure I needed to — there’s now a rather strange curve towards the hips which the original pattern doesn’t have and ample room — but I’ve suffered before in long-line shirts which are too tight over my hips. This is definitely the preferable look. My mum wears a similar size to me, so I simply did both in these measurements. Unfortunately, she’s not in the same country to just pop around and measure when I need to, and this loose fit is forgiving!

This is a lovely sheer cotton, with these interesting bobbly bits on it. I’m sure this has a technical name (enlighten me, someone?), but bobbly covers it. I wasn’t sure which way round to use it — the other way round would still show the spots, since the fabric is so sheer, while being more subtle — but I opted for full-on bobbliness.

Mostly to prove to myself I could do it, I opted for the concealed button placket. It was nowhere near as tricky as I had expected it to be and it turned out great!

. . . And here is its blue cousin! The pattern options and sizing are identical to my own, except for the sleeves. My mum’s not a fan of those almost capped sleeves on my version, and I didn’t get enough fabric to do full-length (oops), so we compromised. Trying to finish these sleeves was an absolute nightmare. For some reason, no matter what I did, they refused to hem straight and just ended up looking twisted. I tried putting cuffs on them: worse. In the end, I opted for bias binding, which worked like a dream . . .

. . . And adds a bit of interest inside the sleeves! I had some of this left over from one of my Project Sorbettos from last year and, as it’s completely invisible from the outside, I thought it would be fun.

I used this same method to hem both blouses, too. I thought I knew better than Eléonore when she suggested hemming the front sections and back section individually and opted to leave it until the end, doing it in one go. Nope. That curve caused pucker after pucker, so I gave up and bound the whole thing, using every pin I own to keep it in place as I sewed. It looks much better, even if it’s perhaps slightly unorthodox.

So, there we have it! One project down, eight to go. I love my new Mélilot, although my new freelancing lifestyle doesn’t give much opportunity to wear business wear anymore (or indeed real clothing:  my new uniform is leggings with a long t-shirt and slippers. Taking these photos was the first time I’d put on makeup in a month).

Have a splendid weekend and eat all the chocolate! (All of it).

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