Knotted Blouse & Slouchy Tee, and Living Dangerously in White Pants

I like to (try to) look stylish. And I like to be comfortable. The perfect solution: a cute blouse — but really a t-shirt — made with soft rayon knit. Win-win!

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This is BurdaStyle’s Knotted Blouse from the August 2016 issue, pattern #125. I sewed it with a lightweight rayon jersey in this jeweltone teal-blue that is one of my very favourite colours.

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I find BurdaStyle patterns are often too big for me, especially the neck openings. And because this rayon jersey seems to stretch out over time, the neck opening has grown over a couple of wears. Let’s just say if I’m wearing this at work and I drop a pencil, I’m definitely not going to bend down to pick it up in anyone else’s presence. I have since resewn the shoulder seams to pull up the neckline, and I’m about to go in for round 2 of the same. Luckily the openings of the cut-on sleeves were very roomy to begin with so I still have some play to take in the shoulder seams.

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If you’ve ever sewn a BurdaStyle pattern (i.e. one from the magazine or website, which is a different beast than the Burda envelope patterns), you’ll know that following the sparse instructions is at best challenging and at worst a giant clusterf*^k. (Side note: I’m always delighted when I can work the word clusterf*^k into a sentence. Teal blue is one of my favourite colours and clusterf*^k is one of my favourite words. There, now I’ve used it three times.) While this pattern is ranked Easy — and it is — I was nonetheless glad to see that the instructions were this issue’s Sewing Lesson. That means step-by-step, full illustrations. Still, if you know BurdaStyle instructions, you won’t be surprised to hear that even the sewing lesson was in parts indecipherable.

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Then there are days when you want to be comfortable and really don’t care quite as much about looking stylish. That’s where this free slouchy tee pattern might come in handy!

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This is a free pattern from Ann at Orange Bettie. It’s only available in one size: women’s size small according to the website, but it’s very roomy so I’d call this more of a medium. In any case, the pattern is just a front and a back piece and a bottom band, so it would be very easy to grade it up as needed.

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Ann’s sample t-shirts are all much more stylish looking than mine, so it is possible that this could be comfortable *and* stylish. However, I chose to use up some plain bamboo french terry (which is *dreamily* comfortable) leftover from making these wide-legged lounge pants, which gives the top a just-coming-home-from-the-gym kinda casual sporty look. No matter — it’s also so dreamily comfortable and it’s perfect as a pyjama top.

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This slouchy tee pattern calls for fold-over elastic to finish off the neck and armholes, but there are no directions for how long the pieces of elastic should be. So my attempt at sewing on the elastic was a hilarious mess, as I kinda treated it more like bias binding. Wrong approach. So after ripping that elastic off, I decided, shockingly, to try a neckband instead, no doubt dooming myself to several more rounds of inserting and ripping out stitches around the neck. However! I outsmarted my lazy, impatient self this time, and took some time to consult the Sage Interwebs Oracle (Google) before proceeding. Gillian of Crafting a Rainbow did a series on her blog called Lazy Tips for Sewing Knits (helllloooo! I’m all lazy ears!) in which she illustrates a really easy way to pick the right length for a knit neckband. I followed her directions and it worked like a charm! This will be my go-to procedure for neckbands from now on. Thanks, Gillian!

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Do you wear white pants? I know these pants look pretty yellow in these pictures (I really struggled getting the colours right while editing them for some reason), but I’d call them ivory or off-white. And it’s the first time I’ve ever owned white jeans. Read on for why I’m telling you this….

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The day these photos were taken was the very first day I’d ever worn my very first pair of white jeans. I had them on for about FOUR SECONDS, and…..

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I’m pretty sure that’s pigeon poop from when I sat down on a picnic bench to change my shoes. Dear friends, are there NO LIMITS to the lengths I will go to show you my latest makes??? NO!!! ย I will live dangerously, and wear white pants to the park, and sit down on picnic benches to change my shoes for the perfectly styled shot, and here is the photographic proof of my utter commitment in the face of white-jeaned danger!!! (Oh and never mind the pigeon poop — I actually changed my top in the park. Talk about living dangerously. I was waiting for an eagle-eyed Tiger Parent to sound the Creepy Adult Removing Shirt in Children’s Park alarm but luckily no one spotted me.)

Have you got any good white pants stories? Do dish.

Thanks so much for stopping by.

— Lori

 

 

 

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11 thoughts on “Knotted Blouse & Slouchy Tee, and Living Dangerously in White Pants

  1. Great tops! I personally find fold over elastic to be a clusterf*ck for me every time I go near the stuff so a band sounds like a good save on the tee. Oh and I have a strict policy avoiding on white bottoms so no stories from me!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m so glad that neckband approach worked for you! I never ever use the pattern pieces for neckbands, I always do it this way… and while it’s not failproof, it’s pretty good! So sad about your white jeans… you’ll just have to avoid sitting or eating while you wear them! ๐Ÿ˜›

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Gillian. I have found that pattern pieces for neckbands are often not quite right…which is probably a function of how much stretch the fabric you’re working with has. I think your method is much more accurate.

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  3. Thank you for this great giggle start to my day! Thank you for reminding me about Gillian’s post on neckbands (knits is where I’m going next having spent months on wovens I’m feeling pretty DONE with them for a while!) I haven’t worn white pants of any sort for more than 40 years ๐Ÿ™‚ and you’ve demonstrated here exactly why…I think I must have had something like this happen when I was a teen and it traumatized me so badly I never EVER went near white again ๐Ÿ™‚ But they look so NICE! Love your white jeans.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Kathleen. Happy knit fabric adventures! I’m in the same boat — I did a couple of woven garments lately and I can’t wait to get back to the comfort and easy fit of knits.

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