Back button blouse and a trick for a neater understitching
This blouse 4655 from Lekala was published only a few weeks ago and I bought it almost immediately. The blouse has a fairly loose fit and a ruffled peplum. The shaping consists only of bust darts making it fairly quick to make. I also like the cuffs with the slits in them even if I ended up changing the design a bit when sewing it up.
I have been saving some lovely cotton lawn by Atelier Brunette in my stash for a long time, but now decided that it was time for me to use it for this project.
I usually get confused if I read Lekala’s instructions, but luckily the pattern was quite self-explanatory. I like how the facings of the neckline and the buttonbands were combined together. To make the facing lay nicely I stitched the seam allowances to the facings very close to the neckline seam. This is generally called understitching. I used to get not-so-nice results but one day I learned that it was due to me using a wrong sewing foot.
So here is a small tutorial:
How to do a perfect understitching (or edge stitching)
Look at the image below. It is the Bernina blind hem foot #5 that (at least for me) came with the machine (for other brands, look for the edge stitching foot that should have a guiding plate in the middle). I do my blind hems by hand so I had never used the foot until I was reading the sewing machine manual for some other reason and noticed that the foot #5 was described to be not only for the blind hems but also for edge stitching.
The foot has a small plate in the middle that guides the foot along the edge or, in my example case, a seam. The distance of the edge stitching from the edge (or seam) is adjusted by positioning the needle. This really helps to make the edge stitching look much better.
In my case the facing is turned to the wrong side and pressed. See how smooth and even the stitching is!
Also the right side is smooth and even and because of the understitching the facing stays nicely in its place and no top stitching is necessary.
So here you are! I hope you found it useful!
Anyway… back to my blouse. I mentioned doing something to the cuffs. The Lekala instructions tell to cut the slit to the outer cuff and sew the outer cuff to the sleeve and then insert the inner cuff and cut that similarly… etc… I don’t understand why this was done in such a complicated way. Why to sew the cuffs into circles in the first place when you then have to make the slits? If you just rotate the cuffs in place so that the short edges of the cuffs coincide with the position of the slit the result is pretty much the same (the cuff shape is a truncated cone) except that the whole thing is much easier and faster to sew and there is much less room for errors. So here are my sleeves and my cuffs with one cuff pinned to the sleeve.
After sewing the pinned seam you still have to finish the wrong side of the cuff. To hide the seam allowances inside the cuffs you’ll have to cut the seam allowance where the “slit” is. I preferred to hand stitch the inner cuff in place but you could machine stitch it as well if that is your preferred method.
So, here is my finished blouse:
The most interesting details are in the back. I chose off-white buttons and decided to use 8 instead of 6 buttons.
I am really happy with this blouse. I like the fit even if I did not do any additional fitting. I think that I have finally managed to tweak my Lekala measurements in such a way that they correspond to my actual body shape.
Thank you for visiting my blog and if you like these posts, please subscribe! Happy sewing!
This is a great outfit! The only disturbing thing on the look are those massive vpl. Tip: go for some other style of undies. There are a lot of (free) thong patterns out there to get started with matching underwear-sewing (in case you perfer the do-it-yourself-style). 🙂
Sorry that my choice of underwear disturbs you! I don’t really understand why anyone would care. The thing is, this is not a style blog and I don’t want to polish my pictures too much. I was completely aware of combining dark underwear with white jeans and the resulting vpl and chose to ignore it. I feel that the life is too short to worry about such a trivial things than visible panty lines. I wear panties and so does (mostly) everyone else and am not embarrassed by it! I want to share my love for sewing and that’s all. So many people are nowadays struggling with body confidence issues. Many people have contacted me saying they wish they could were the same things I make but they feel they are not young, old, thin, whatever enough. I always say that they can wear whatever they want as long as they themselves feel comfortable. I feel that if I started caring about my pantylines showing I’d start soon worrying about my bottom looking big, my smile looking funny, my legs being short, my nose being big, my hair being too thin or sticking in wrong directions, my acne, my glasses, my arms, my back and insert-body-issue-here. So I choose to accept me, my issues and my vpl and wear my most comfortable panties whenever I want. 😀
Lovely work! Isn’t it amazing what a difference it makes, using the right foot. Love your top.
Thanks! It really does. These kind of things are so obvious after you learn them but without the knowledge you are just stuck wondering why your sewing doesn’t look good.
This is a really lovely top, such a nice design!
When I understitch I use the inner edge of my presser foot as a guide, but my machine is a bit different. That presser foot looks like a handy one to have!