I love wearing drapey blouses at this time of year, they are comfy and easy to layer and help me feel put together. I decided to make a new blouse for Christmas Day using the Simple Sew Olive Blouse.
I’ve been wanting to make this since it was released, I love the delicate style and the loose fit.
The fabric that I chose was provided by Fabric Godmother. It’s a beautiful spotty bubble crepe from Lady McElroy. It comes in a lot of colours, but I chose the Slate colourway as I thought it would look really good with jeans and black trousers. I know the fabric doesn’t seem particularly Christmassy, but I wanted something that is sophisticated and that I can enjoy wearing again and again. The fabric is beautiful, it has a lot of texture and drape and a little stretch. Also, it doesn’t crease easily, which is great because I’m not a big fan of ironing!
The pattern is aimed at beginners, which seems fine when looking at the envelope, but after making it I would say it’s more of an intermediate pattern. There are a lot of pieces and quite a lot of construction. It’s all pretty straightforward, but there are a couple of points I’d like to emphasise in the instructions.
1 – When attaching the front shoulder yoke to the front bodice, it isn’t clear what direction it should go, but the notch on the yoke should line up with the notch on the bodice where the gathering stops.
2 – The instructions on attaching the placket to the blouse are a little sparse, and this is the trickiest part of the construction. You need to attach the outer edge of the placket to the top, sewing a convex curve to a concave curve. This requires a bit of fabric manipulation and easing. It’s straightforward but requires some patience and a lot of pins! The fabric that I chose actually really helped with this process as it has some give and can be manipulated into shape! This is one of those parts in sewing where it feels a bit wrong if you haven’t done it before, but when it’s done it all makes sense!
The rest of the blouse is very straightforward. If you have made a few things before and are looking for something a little more involved, this is the perfect project for you. It’s a good one for someone who is new to drapey fabrics, as the gathers eliminate darts and there are no collars / precision elements so there is room for a small margin of error!
I made the pattern exactly as is and one thing to note is that the sleeves come up a little shorter than I was expecting, they are sort of bracelet length, neither 3/4 nor full length.
There is a lot of fullness through the body of the pattern, which I love. This would only work well in a drapey fabric, and this crepe is perfect for it.
I am so happy with the finished blouse. It’s elegant but still roomy enough for a big Christmas dinner! I know it will get a lot of wear through the rest of the year too and it works well with a little vest underneath for some added warmth!
Sewing a classic style like the Olive Blouse will give you a brilliant wardrobe staple for both work and play. It works best in a lightweight woven fabric with some drape, such as viscose, silk, satin or cotton lawn. If you’re a fan of spots as Jenny is then check out the other colourways of spotted bubble crepe available from Fabric Godmother below. There’s easily one for every season!
For more details on the pattern take a look at the back of the pattern envelope below.