Monday, March 9, 2009

The blouse from Hell!

I spent the entire weekend and most of today sewing the "Blouse from Hell!" It's Butterick 5300 by Connie Crawford and is part of her modern fit or some crap. It's supposed to emulater RTW. If RTW fit me the way this blouse does I am going to become a nudist and y'all don't even want to begin to see none of that!

Well just let me say I read a couple of rave reviews about it and since I'm supposed to go to a three day workshop where Connie fits that particular pattern to you, I figured I'd give it a shot before hand. I probably won't be able to go now because of the cancer but it's clear to me that if this blouse didn't kill me cancer ain't got a snowball's chance in hell!

The saga begin with me making five, yes five, different muslins. That took all day Saturday. Finally I figured I might as well bite the bullet and cut some fashion fabric. What in the world made me choose this print?? To condense this horror story I'll list some of what went wrong

  1. Hideous fabric print

  2. Super dense fabric had to resort to using pattern weights

  3. Sewed, topstitched and edged stitched collar only realizing after the last stitch that the collar was not on properly had also clipped and trimmed the seam. Picking all that out was super fun

  4. Picked all major seams apart at least once...most way more than that

  5. Placed the front edge along the salvage knowning the 5/8" seam would take care of it..wrong, some seams are 3/8"...the front edge was of the 3/8" variety

  6. I cut the wrong size front and it was too tight across the front shoulder so had to stitch a 1/4" sleeve seam to get a little extra room

  7. The bust dart on the pattern is about 1" above the apex of the bust

  8. The DD dart is humongous

  9. The sleeve would fit Godzillas arms with room to spare not to mention there ain't that much easing the world to fit the sleeve into the armhole

I could go on but I think you get the picture. So here's my review of the pattern



Did it look like photo/drawing on the pattern envelope one you were done sewing it?


Were instructions easy to follow?


What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I particularly like the written instruction for the collar and the ease of which the collar went together and the forward should consideration. I disliked everything else about the pattern. The dart is above the apex of the bust! I don't know who came up with the sleeve design but they need to be horsewhipped (in my humble opinion). I really disliked that some seams were 3/8" while others were 5/8"

Fabric used?

I'm not sure but it's some kind of peachskin polyester. They could probably make bullet proof vests out of it because regular sewing pins don't stand a chance

Pattern alterations or any deisgn changes you made?

Widened the back, lengthened the waist, redesigned the sleeve. I sewed View B but used the collar and stand from View A.

Would you sew it again?

No but I'll use it as a guide for future projects. With all of my complaining it's hard to believe but with all that went on I learned a lot like

  1. I need to make a wide back adjustments (about 2")

  2. I was able to solve the twisted sleeve wide upper back was pulling my sleeve for extra fabric resulting in that horrible twisting

  3. My upper body is 1" longer than patterns

  4. Because I have forward shoulders, my shoulders are really flat on the back and pointed on the front. I used my inner Sinatra and "did it my way!" Now I have a sleeve pattern to use as a guide

  5. Somewhere along the way I've acquired some of the patience of Job because I should have trashed that project midway. I'm sure I will now. It's just plain ugly!


I'm going to use what I learned with this disaster to make a really cute blouse tomorrow!


  1. You had me lol at your post! I have heard a few good reviews about a couple of Connie's patterns...I'm just not convinced yet. Sorry you had such a hard time with this pattern.

  2. Sorry you had so much trouble with it, that's very annoying. I haven't heard many good reviews on her patterns so I'm avoiding them like the plague.

  3. Your weekend sounds like the one I had making Little Man's shirt and pants. I ended up throwing shirt number one in the trash after removing the buttons and elastic. Some things just aren't meant to be. I love your sense of humor and hope you are able to keep it throughout the next months or however long it will be.

  4. I'm not convinced anymore! I am convinced I'm gonna have to kill something or somebody if I have to fool around with another piece of crap like that. I could have made an entire wardrobe with the time I wasted. But like Rhett said to Scarlet..."Tomorrow's another day!"

  5. Julia I have a bone to pick with you. After reading about your woes my sewing karma started to go south! You jinxed me...LOL

  6. Oops, sorry! I'll try to only be positive from now on!!! I am so excited about how Little Man's shirt ended up that I have forgotten how hard it was the first time. I also think that I was stressing over his shirt and that's why the pants gave me a fit. The pants were really easy, I just made stupid mistakes. Now, I'm going to make his jacket and take my time and try to be more careful. I'm really looking forward to getting to the other two dresses I still have to do. I'm used to dresses.
    On the flip side, your sense of humor and strength has inspired me to try to be more positive and look at the bright side of things. Hence the 50s poem, etc...
    A good laugh is the best medicine!

  7. Man - I have yet to make ONE muslin for a project. It stinks that you had so much trouble, but kudos for the perseverance.

  8. I made a blouse used the sewing with Nancy fitting techniques.I forget the pattern number. the collar and back were a nightmare After all the bs it pulled across the back and just looked like crap. I looked up the pattern to find it was discontinued a real good call.I feel your pain. I do the same thing perservere. sometimes its the fabric I made my son a shirt he is a 4x tall says he is a 3x tall. the fabric biased it hung like a old school maternity top. I wanted to cry it was so much wasted time!!