Friday, March 15, 2013

Pearl Collar Blouse + How to make a pearl collar tutorial!

Hey everyone!
Phew! I had SUCH a tiring week! I didn't get much sewing done but I have a few project stacked up to show you guys!

This is a blouse I made a few weeks ago that I'm IN LOVE WITH even though it's FULL of flaws and I'm sometimes a little ashamed to admit it's me-made. I really like pearls, I think they're classy and timeless - what outfit isn't improved by a pearl necklace? I've been wanting to use pearls as embellishment for a while but I couldn't decide how and with what fabric. In the end I went for the simplest design possible - black short sleeved blouse as a backdrop for the embellishment. Sometimes keeping it simple is the best is the best policy.

I'll be sharing a tutorial later in the post! It's really easy and I think it's such a cool touch!

I have so many different pictures of this blouse, see how much of a difference this picture made? You get to see like 10 more degrees of the blouse and my elbow.

I used a very very very old black satin-y fabric from my stash. This is one of the few fabrics I have left from my grandmother (who sewed as well - can you believe that both of my grandmothers sewed??), I don't even know what the fabric is made of even though I have a strong suspicion that it's silk. It's much softer and less plastic-y than poly satin but then again it's difficult to say, I am fooled easily. I'm going to say it's silk because I want to be one of those bloggers who sews with fine fabric and doesn't have a whole wardrobe of man made fabrics that make you feel like you're wearing a sauna.

Full frontal view. (I love this picture!) The collar is constructed from two rows of alternating pearls. It took a while to sew but I think it was worth it.

The blouse sports princess seams and (badly) gathered sleeves. I love princess seams, I think they're so flattering and I find the easier to sew than darts, especially princess seams that reach the shoulder seam (rather than the under arm seam). This is the same pattern from the Mrs. Pettigrew Plaid Blouse I made.

What issues do I have with this blouse? The armholes are totally wonky, in retrospect I know what mistake I made to make this like this - which is a good thing! I'm learning! I'm still kind of ashamed of it but it doesn't seem like anyone but me notices it. Live and learn - right?

Ok, so let's talk about making the collar, it's a pretty easy process but it's a little time consuming (especially if you decide to sew two rows of pearls like I did.)

OK, step 1: take your cat off your fabric.

2) Trace the front neckline on a piece of paper.

3) Next trace the shape of the collar you want (I went for a peter pan collar!)

4) Cut it out:

5) Trace the new collar along the neckline of the shirt. (I finished the neckline with bias tape before doing this)

Next trace the opposite side of the neckline:

I used an old necklace for this:

Next, hand sew the pearls along the markings (I sewed two rows at alternating points)

That's it! It's that simple!

What do you think? Would you try this out yourself?
Do you guys ten to lean towards simpler fabrics/silhouttes and make you embellishment the focal point of you design?
I'd love to hear your thoughts!


  1. Looks great, I'd love to try it!, I might even have the perfect fabric already, but i'm pretty sure its poly satin.



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