Clara, Clara, you beautiful lady.

As promised, I’m giving Sew Over It another go. I purchased the Clara pattern last month because as soon as I saw the silhouette, I was smitten. Smitten. Like this is the kind of pattern I want to make a million of. I was just hoping the sleeves wouldn’t be botched up. 

I proceeded with caution, examining the sleeve shape and also reading what others’ experience was with the pattern. No one that I saw had any issue, so I trudged ahead. I cut and sewed most of the blouse between 11pm and 1am Thursday because I couldn’t sleep and I just wanted to make and complete something swiftly. I need these sorts of projects as my breaks when I’m working on a long term, huge project like the commission I’m making now.

So let’s do a proper review, shall we? 

The silhouette is killer. We know that just from Lisa Comfort’s shots for the pattern. The pleats at the neckline create a wonderful shape that negates the need for bust darts which is super cool. 

The hem is a split hem with a lower back and higher front. I wasn’t sure how I would like that part and considered just making a straight all around hem, but I’m so glad I gave it a chance because its so darn good. A special thanks to the husband for making me look even more bootylicious than normal. NOT. The man does not understand the meaning of “get a flattering angle”. 

The back has a keyhole opening which is lovely. I like that. This pretty button is from Jones & Vandermeer and I ordered 24 of them because they are pretty and awesome. 

The neckline is finished with facing which I normally hate more than anything, but honestly it goes well here. I would use a different interfacing next time because the one I used is just a touch too stiff and I think it makes the shirt a little to stiff at the top. Its just a touch tighter than I feel like it should be- not when I’m standing, but if I reach over my head, I do feel like it restricts my movement just a little in the back. I’m guessing it has to do with the interfacing, but I’m going to play around on my next version and see if I can remedy that, because the fit overall is very good. I wouldn’t want to go up or down in size, because I do like the fit. 

The sleeves! So the sleeves come with a funky looking cuff. I’m not feeling it, and I didn’t want long sleeves. so I used the sleeve piece, cut it straight across on the bottom so I would have a 3/4 sleeve. I wanted it to be fitted, so I just pressed my hem and sewed almost all the way around, but left an opening and inserted some 3/8″ elastic, then closed the opening. Its exactly the look I was after, so I’m pleased it worked out as planned. 

Based on my experience with Clara, I would absolutely recommend the pattern. Its a simple sew. I’d say if you have sewn a garment before, you could make this with no problem in the course of an afternoon. I never mention this because I don’t even think to, but I do find it helpful when I read this elsewhere, so what the heck. I’m 5’4″, I don’t have a clue what I weigh because I make it a point never to step on a scale, but I made the UK size 8 based on the size chart and it works perfectly. 

I purchased the PDF and had it printed at Office Depot as a copy shop file. Its so cheap to do that, and saves SO MUCH TIME, I don’t think I would ever go back to trimming and taping sheets together even though I never had an issue with that. I don’t even buy paper patterns anymore unless that’s the only format I can get  because I think its so much more practical to have a file and be able to print a bajillion of them if I want.

Now believe it or not, the fabric is actually from Hobby Lobby. I only ever buy thread or batting or some notion there or at JoAnn’s, but I passed by this poly crepe (which feels and sews up just like a dream) and I couldn’t pass it up. They’ve got some killer apparel fabrics at the moment, and its worth a gander if you have one close by. I think the drape of the fabric couldn’t be more perfect for this blouse. 

Well that’s that! Its a winner in my eyes! In fact, I have two more ready to be cut and sewn that hopefully I’ll get to show you in the next week or so. I also have a tutorial coming up, so you’ll have to keep an eye out for that. I hope you are having a beautiful Monday. I started the day with a frosted coffee from Chick fil a, a quick trip to Target, and a grocery store run where I let Wallace push the mini cart and he didn’t knock anything over, so I’m calling today a success.


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Welcome to Olivia Jane Handcrafted! I'm Meredith and this is my creative journal. Here you'll find loads of inspiration for a handmade wardrobe, home decor, bags, and quilts. I even have plenty of projects and tutorials to get you started or help you along the way.

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