First of all, thank you guys all so much for your kind words and support. I feel so lucky to have such wonderful friends that I've "met" through the internet. You all mean so much to me. I've been kind of hiding just how bad I was really feeling in my online presence, so it feels good to just get everything out there. When I first started sewing, I really had no idea, just how much it would impact my life. It's been such great therapy for me, but it's also been such a great tool for connecting with some really fantastic people.
Secondly, now that you all know what's been happening with me, you'll be able to easily excuse my terrible bed head in the next few posts. LOL. My hair looks okay from the front, but it's kind of a mess everywhere else. Sometimes dry shampoo can be a blessing and a curse. LOL
Anyway, let's get on to one of my favourite makes of the summer: the Deer & Doe Patterns Mélilot blouse.
I bought this pattern just after it was released, because I loved the short sleeve version. I love a good button up shirt, and this version looked like it would be perfect for spring and summer. I've made a couple of short sleeve Archers in the past, but I found them kind of masculine, like I was wearing one of John's shirts, or almost uniform looking on me. I think the cuffed kimono sleeve of this pattern, keeps the shirt looking more feminine and modern, so that's what really drew me to it.
Anyway, I was super excited about it when it came, but then it just sat on my sewing table for months. I think the idea having to muslin a new shirt pattern was a bit daunting for some reason. Anyway, that was super silly because this pattern fit me really quite well straight out of the envelope.
I haven't made a lot of Deer & Doe patterns (even though I own a ton of them, and have heard nothing but great things) so I wasn't 100% sure what size to start with. I ended up picking a size 42 based on the Finished Garment Measurements. I love when designers include the finished measurements! It helps so much!
I traced the pattern and compared the pieces to my Archer pattern. By doing that I knew it would fit, so I cut into some gorgeous pinstriped hemp chambray I had in my stash, which (of course), came from Blackbird Fabrics. (Do I shop anywhere else? I promise I do, but I feel like when I'm typing up blog posts, I'm always mentioning Blackbird. LOL. I'm a Blackbird Fabrics addict!) Anyway, it feels almost like linen, but it was super soft right off the bat like chambray. Thumbs up for natural fibres.
So this is a straight size 42 with no adjustments. As you can see, the fit is almost perfect, but it's pulling slightly across the bust and it's a little tight across my upper back. It's doesn't look too bad everywhere else, although I do find it is a little snug around my belly as well.
Also did you notice my huge mistake? I put the buttonholes on the wrong side!! Oops! Not really a big deal, but it should be the opposite. Anyway, once this shirt was finished, I wore it for 3 days in a row (including one day with a hilarious button up failure), so I knew I needed to make another one right away.
For my second Mélilot, I decided to make a straight size 44.
I think the size 44 fits really well, but it might be slightly too long. I almost feel like I need a size 43. Something right in between the two sizes I made. Anyway, it is a bit long for me, but I really don't mind. I think it will tuck in nicely to skirts at this length, and if I'm having a day where I want to be super comfy, I can throw on leggings with it, and not feel super self-conscious because my butt is covered. 😜
This fabric is a gorgeous striped chambray, that came to me all the way from Bangkok from the lovely Meg. She made her husband a shirt out of this fabric, and I ooooo'd and ahhhhh'd so much about it, that she offered to send me some. We ended up doing a fabric swap - sewing friends are the best - and you can see what she made with the fabric I sent her here.
Anyway, I feel like this shirt is extra special because the fabric was a gift, not to mention that now Meg's husband and I have matching shirts. LOL. I'm super happy with how it turned out, and I have been wearing it a ton as well.
I should also mention that this shirt is a pretty simple make. The mandarin collar, the fold over plackets (which I believe are called french plackets) and kimono sleeves make for a super quick sew. I think the thing that takes the longest is making all those buttonholes (well and sewing on the buttons, but I always do that by machine because I'm lazy). The pockets are totally lined, which is a cool little detail and helps you to sew the curves at the bottom much neater.
I love the shape of this blouse. I think the curves make it very flattering, and I can't wait to make a bunch more of them. In fact, I've already made a third one, and I'm planing a couple long sleeve ones for fall and winter too.
So what do you think? Have I swayed you to buy yet another button up shirt pattern? Ha ha! I'm a pattern junkie too. Anyway, if I did, you'll notice that Deer & Doe are temporarily out of stock, but I did hear (from the lovely @shar_bozz) that you can buy it from Pattern Review, and I'm sure there are other stockists too.
Thanks again friends! Happy Sewing!