True to my word in my mini-review of Love at First Stitch, I made a Mimi blouse before the end of 2015! Pretty near the beginning of 2015 in fact. The Mimi blouse is my favourite pattern from the book, and I loves me a vintage-y style little blouse (as proven by my collection of patterns you can see here). Also, sometimes when I'm teaching workshops at Tilly's HQ, I think it's nice to represent 'Team Tilly' by wearing a creation from one of her patterns. Just as soon as it gets warmer...
So the first thing to mention about the pattern is that is needs tracing. The patterns in the book are helpfully ordered so all the bits you'll need for one of the styles are all grouped together on one large page per pattern, so no magic-eye skillz required like with the Burda or Ottobre magazines. PLUS, unlike those 'zines, seam and hem allowances are already included. Want to see a video of Dolores 'helping' me trace out the Mimi pattern pieces? Of course you do...
If I'm looking slightly less than a picture of patience in the video, despite the evident cuteness of her assistance, it is because it was taken at the end of a long day full of 'helping'!
So back to the pattern. I decided to monkey around with the sizing a bit. Generally I like my blouses to be quite fitted, and the style ease in the Mimi seemed quite a lot more than I'd usually go for. So to this end, even though my measurements corresponded closely to the Size 3 of the pattern, I actually traced the Size 2, and used the Size 3 for the sleeve. Generally I think this was a good tactic, however it did come out a tiny bit tighter than I expected in a couple of places, so maybe I'd make the Size 3 after all if I make this again. Oh, and I'd probably go up another size to the Size 4 for the sleeves next time as they are a wee bit tight, although that could be the crappy interfacing I used for the stiffening the facings which always seems to shrink whatever I'm fusing a little.
There are some really lovely elements to this pattern and it was a really enjoyable make. I think the proportions of the gathered yoke and collar are really lovely. The only thing I felt I could add to the pattern was to make a different configuration of the buttons, which I placed in pairs for a little extra interest.
Hmm, so I'm not really sure this fabric is 'me', and my personal jury is still out on this subject. It's an undeniable pretty ditsy floral Liberty or faux-Liberty (I'm not sure, I didn't buy it) print cotton lawn that has been lurking in my stash for an age. Just as Karen wrote in the awesome Liberty Tana Lawn edition of her fabric Focus series, it feels wonderful to both work with AND wear. I cannot wait for warmer months to wear this regularly and enjoy that experience!
I'm actually surprised by how much I like this blouse despite the 'un-me' fabric. I think the fabric a good pairing with this sewing pattern, and that is what is winning me over. As Tilly writes in the book, the Mimi blouse looks great with skinny jeans, which is pretty much my uniform at the moment.