I really need to stop telling myself, "I'm going to finish this tonight." This encourages me to stay up 'til 1:00 AM desperately trying to meet my self imposed deadline. It's silly. And the shirt still isn't finished!
One of my main problems is once I get home, eat dinner and spend a little time with family it's already 9:00 before I can even start. Last night I drug out the shirt that I had been so proud of the night before, tried it on and immediately wanted to just throw it into the trash. Everything was wrong wrong wrong! I took it off, and went and whined to my husband about it for a bit. I realized that my perfectionism was holding me back and that it was really hard for me to work on something that wasn't going to be perfect, but if I didn't work on doing some of this stuff, I would never improve! Like many things in life I've got to be willing to suck. I also realized that I was trying it on with one of my 'crappy' bras and the shirt that I had on was much bulkier then the t-shirt I had been wearing under the blouse the night before, so I changed, tried it on again and things looked much less bleak.
It took a little work but I managed to get the second set of bust darts in place to allow the fabric to lay better around the arm holes (does this mean I need to start with a smaller pattern maybe?) I also sewed the shoulder and side seams where I had just basted them and got the side zipper put in correctly. I'm pretty excited that I was able to use a vintage metal zipper from my mother-in-laws stash and that I was able to sew the lapped zipper without too much trouble.
Then I started on the collar. The first thing I noticed was that I had only cut two out the collar pattern and I needed four. Luckily I had enough fabric left over that I was able to squeeze two more out. I didn't interface the collar (nor am I doing the bow) because the reviews I've seen say that it makes it a bit TOO stiff. Plus, I'm using a 'quilting cotton' (Yeah - what of it) and it's a bit stiffer too so it feels like I don't need the interfacing. Since this blouse was mostly about an experiment in altering patterns to fit - I don't think it's a big deal. But, here's the thing that annoyed me about these instructions. When making the collar they call the piece that you've ironed innerfacing to the 'collar facing' in one step - then in a later step tell you to attach the collar facing - which is a labeled pattern piece that was cut out earlier. This really threw me for a bit, but, I finally figured it out and got the collar and the facing attached to my shirt. I rolled the collar facing around to the inside - stitched it all in place then excitedly tried it all on... Only there was something seriously wrong with the collar! It was bunching weirdly and wouldn't lay right. I took the shirt off and tried ironing the whole thing and it STILL wasn't working. The pictures on the envelope weren't helping either as the collar was mostly covered the by jacket/cardigan that was also part of the pattern and the line drawing was too simple to help me figure out what was going on. Then I figured it out. I had attached the collar facing like biased tape, using it to wrap the edge like this: