Mimi Blouse in Owls!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

A couple months ago this rayon owl fabric from fabric.com became super popular among some of us on Instagram. I saw it on someone's feed and knew I had to have it. 
RAYON OWLS. They look like smart owls to me! Smart enough that it's possible they all hold jobs delivering mail to lucky wizards or something like that.
I knew I wanted to make a button down blouse with a collar. I initially wanted a button back, Peter Pan collar top, but no patterns really stood out to me that seemed appropriate. For Christmas however I bought myself Tilly Walne's book Love at First Stitch, Demystifying Dressmaking. I drank that sucker up. First, Tilly is just a doll and we need to be friends. Also the patterns in the book are just adorable. Enter the Mimi blouse! 
As per my usual, I stalked the interwebs about the Mimi blouse before I made it. Many people mentioned that it has quite a lot of ease in it, good for tucking in and blousing, however I prefer a bit less ease in my tops. I ended up making a blouse two sizes smaller than my measurements indicated but I was confident that I would be comfortable, able to tuck it in, while not having excess ease that I feel is unflattering on me.
I have decided that fusible interfacing kind of sucks, especially on facings. I always use woven interfacing but wanted to preserve the fluidity of the rayon. I wanted to keep my blouse soft, not just to the touch but also to the eye. I decided to try using muslin as sew in interfacing and it worked pretty well! It keeps my collar nice and "soft" while keeping the neck and front facings comfortable to wear.
The size range in the book does not extend too far, but with this blouse and some of the other patterns in the book there is enough ease that there doesn't need to be much grading of sizes going on. (I have also made the Margot pajama pants from the book in my proper size according to my measurements and they're quite loose!) I did however grade the sleeves out to the largest size at the bottom because I find sleeves can be a bit tight there for me. As they are now, they're quite comfortable to wear.  
Blue and orange, one of my favorite yet unexpected color combinations.
This blouse has a ton of sweet details that makes me very proud to have made this top. Besides the obvious Chelsea collar and button down front, there are gathers at the front and back yoke, sleeve cap as well as a sweet tulip pleat detail on the sleeves. I find the blouse to be on the short side however so this may need to be lengthened for most people.
I absolutely adore this top and it is now part of my work and casual wardrobe rotation. Have you peeked in Tilly's book? It's darling!


  1. This looks fantastic!! I love the owls, and I'm going to try the muslin as interfacing trick next time I work with rayon.

    1. Thank you! I really like having the muslin in there, it definitely makes for a softer collar. I'm going to try it again in some upcoming projects too.


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