It's the little things...

Hi all.

I thought I'd start a new segment on the blog about all the little touches I often put in some of my garments. When I'm out wearing something I've made, often people notice a detail here or there that I could have easily left out. It makes me feel great when someone notices!

This blouse I'm sure you are all familiar with.


I do so love this vintage rayon, and the buttons and such. But I did loop buttonholes for the cuffs (a detail in and of themselves) but even though the cuffs are a good fit, the weight of the glass buttons is a bit too much and they twist down.

I noticed this particularly when I was wearing the blouse out one night. I was at a friend's birthday party and sitting at the bar. I kept hearing a *knock* on the counter from the buttons! It wasn't too loud, but to hear and feel it in a loud crowded bar was concerning.

Even before that I'd wanted to redo the thread link closure on this blouse. This was the time because another concern came to me.

The birthday girl came over and liked the blouse. She commented on the pointed detail on the back where the vent is. I like that detail too. When I got home and took it off to hang it, I noticed a bit of stress at that point. Crap! The fabric's weave was shifting and I was not having that!

So with two concerns on this vintage fabric blouse I felt it was time to get to the mending.
First was the cuffs.


I simply cut off the buttons and set them aside. I then marked on the cuffs, past the seam allowance the length of the button hole. After that I just stitched in the button holes.


Because my machine tends to zip by making button holes I go over mine twice.
It makes them look rather good.
I've also developed a nice procedure when opening button holes.

I lay them flat on a small cutting mat I have and using a somewhat dull xacto knife (I use this to cut open everything, not a fan of seam rippers) I slice the hole open, making sure I cut cleanly at the ends of the hole.

Here is the clean up part. It helps set the thread in place and frees up all the loose strands of fabric. I open the new hole and in a curricular motion, I rub the insides together. This loosens up all the fly away, I then, wrong side out, pull all the fly-aways up, and closely snip them off.


There you have it. Clean button hole. Yay!


I'm sure most of you do the same thing, but I told this to someone and she gasped at the amount of 'work' for a button hole. Okay...

After that I reattached the buttons I slipped the sleeve over my arm and tested them out. Fit was grand and snug enough to prevent shifting. I left the thread loops on because they don't show. I wasn't ready to let go of that amount of work yet.

Next I had to deal with that pull at the dart of the back of the shirt.


I felt the best course of action was to add some stabilizer to the rayon. It just so happened I had a scrap of washed muslin laying on the table.
*perfect*
I finished off the edges of a 2x2" square with a ziz-zag stitch.


I felt serging it would have been a bit much.
I took the blouse and pinned the top of the vent shut.


I then pinned the muslin in place and re-stitched over the point on the dart. After that I lightly tacked the corners of the muslin to the back pleat and presto, stabilization achieved!

It feels good to mend up projects like this, and sharing them with others lets people know that most of those vintage garments you see floating out there most likely have the same, if not higher level of detail.

Have a great day, all!

5 comments:

  1. Fascinating. I haven't sewed in a long time and I want to get back into it. I am sure your blog will be a standby for me.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I agree that it's the little details that make the difference. I know that sometimes I'm so keen to finish a garment that I leave details out. I hope that with much time and practice I will be able to make garments half as good as yours!

    ReplyDelete
  3. How beautiful! I'm so impressed with the care you put into your garments!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Your sewing skills are amazing! I am jealous.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Oh wow, I just had a "duh" moment when I read about your buttonhole cleaning. The loose thread and fraying on machine made buttonholes has been constantly annoying me, but I never thought about a solution. Thanks for the tip. As you say it's all about the small thing :-)

    ReplyDelete

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