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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Simplicity 4047 - Pants & Blouse

This is such a cute pattern, and, I think, understated. As in, it doesn't SCREAM vintage. It's smart, and vintage looking, but not super obvious, which I like. It's Simplicity 4047, but last time I looked, it was out of print. I got my copy off ebay for about $15.

I sewed a blouse from it over a year ago, and really liked the fabric I chose, but I didn't take any detailed measurements as it was only my second proper sewing attempt and it was too big around & too short... and kind of reminded me of hospital scrubs. I still wear it on occasion, but when I recently sewed another version, I really fell in love. I added FOUR, yes 4, inches in length to this pattern, and sewed a smaller size, and I love it. I also lowered the neckline by about 2 inches, so it didn't feel so hospital-ish. I picked a nice material, and actually spent more than I would normally for fabric, but I am so glad I did. It's a light cotton, with small embroidered flowers on it. Because this fabric was lighter, I used a light-weight interfacing, and also made the neckline interfacing panel a lot narrower, as I didn't want to be able to see through the blouse and have my interfacing so visible. There is also a ring of interfacing along the sleeve edge to give it some shape, but I didn't add it, instead keeping the sleeves loose. They have less shape, but then they also fit nicely into the sleeves of a cardigan, not showing lumps through. I made the sash a few inches longer as well, so I had the option to tie it in a bow.



For the pants, they also fit well in a smaller size (always check finished garment measurements, not what your actual size is. Depending on how you like your clothes to fit, you will probably be a smaller size than the pattern suggests. Sometimes the pattern envelope will tell you the finished garment size, but sometimes those measurement are written on the pattern itself). I decided to use a jeans material, with little stretch. The pants looked to be a little bigger than I wanted, but I cut them out according to the pattern anyhow, just to be sure I knew how the jeans felt, as the material is thick & sturdy. But yep, they were enormous. The waist & hips fit perfectly, but the legs were a lot wider than I wanted. So, I sewed my side seams as the pattern suggested, then pinched in the sides as I was standing up straight. I ended up taking 4 inches on the circumference of each leg, tapering from the knee up to the hips. I took in 1.5" on the outside, and 1/2" from the inside seam to get the 4", and kept a straight line from the knee down. Taking measurements from a natural position (whether you need to add, or take out material) helps the garment sit, or hang, correctly. That is why I didn't take equal amounts off the inside and outside seam, or all 4 inches only out of one seam. The pants, or my body shape, dictated that I needed the excess taken out in different amounts to hang nicely.

So, after a day of sewing, I needed to test out the new threads, and we took our respective modes of transport to a local cafe.


Overall, I am very pleased with the results, and taken out on a test run, everything worked great! I could ride bike, sit & eat, and no seams fell apart :)

(We live near a regional airport & often get to see pilots in training, jets, carriers, all sorts of aircraft. today we got to watch these little guys fly in formation, though I only got the camera out as they were looping back for landing. Supposedly the fighter pilots train in these to practice formation. A few weeks back, I got to watch the new Australian fighter jets come and say hello to the guys in the tower. As much as living near an airport SUCKS, you do get to see some fun stuff every so often).


Shelley Hesson August 26, 2012 at 12:50 AM  

Beautiful outfit. I love the fabric you used for the blouse. The pants look great on you. Cool photos too.

dot October 2, 2012 at 3:09 AM  

That looks really nice! You sewed your jeans? Not sure that I have ever done that! Love the vintage patterns...I have some...but from the 70's ..not quite as cool!

Kathryn Nickel October 2, 2012 at 11:14 PM  

Hey Mom, yep, sewed the pants too. Very easy, no pockets, no belt loops, etc. Very simple :) I'd love to see some of your patterns. Keep them, they will be worth something soon :)

Heidi November 30, 2012 at 3:29 PM  

Look at you, you beautiful thing. i LOVE the outfit and even more that you sewed it. Talented. As always.