Southern exposure …

I have made my Colette Jasmine and thank goodness that’s over! Don’t get me wrong, the pattern is lovely, but my choice of fabric has left me a little shaken!


I used the polka dot and floral fabric from my Walthamstow stash (bottom of the pile above) and there are a couple of reasons to love/hate this synthetic, slippery son of a gun. Firstly it’s very pretty yet I can’t help but feel it’s a bit mumsy, a bit, oh I don’t know, bank uniformy? I just need a navy blazer with gold buttons and perhaps a ‘hair sprayed to the max’ flick and you’ll be asking me to change your euros. It has a lovely drape and certainly feels nice to touch, it even does as it’s told if you press it to within an inch of a meltdown.


I’d seen ScruffyBadger’s lovely dress and had ideas of stealing borrowing her red ricrac addition as it looks so perfect, but my head told  me not to try and be too clever. Colette do an excellent job with this pattern and explain each step nice and clearly as always, but the fabric really was tricky to work with (have I mentioned that already?). My first mistake was thinking I was cutting around the weighted down pattern when actually I ended up with a distorted back piece in the shape of Finland.


It very soon became apparent that this wasn’t gong to plan. I stopped using the pattern instructions about half way through just because I wanted to finish it and not waste any more time on something I thought I would probably never wear. So, I used bias binding (my hint of red) instead of facing and I changed the sleeves to a shorter, simple, hemmed version. As much as I like the cuffs Colette have designed, I think to construct them here might have just tipped me over the edge! Also the ties are meant to be in a bow, but I think I prefer them just hanging there looking relaxed in a casual, I’m no bank clerk sort of way …


I have worn this all morning with a pair of jeans and a red cardi and  it looks quite nice … until I move. Those bias cuts are cheeky, they look figure hugging good when motionless, but when I sit down my naked back is exposed to unsuitable extremes and what with the oh so low waist of my silly jeans showing the top of my massive knickers, this isn’t good. Oh, I’m being a grump, forgive me, this could be a really good top.


To do this pattern justice I will absolutely, definitely make the Jasmine again but I will use a cotton I think, something with substance and something my machine loves to sew. I will cut it much longer than the pattern instructs and I will fiddle with the fitting issues across the back too (slight hump going on for some reason).


I know I look a bit demented in this photo but believe it or not, it’s an ‘I’m quite happy with this after all’ face. I might just go and buy a vest to wear under it (one that tucks into my knickers, well it’s damn cold out) then we’ll all be happy.

The best thing has been that I’ve actually made time to sew again and it’s been absolutely brilliant to be in ‘the zone’. Just me, the radio and the gentle purr of my machine. I love being at home and get such pleasure from sitting with a mug of tea reading through the pattern and laying it all out. The whole process is therapeutically satisfying. It’s nice to be back.





Filed under makes

15 responses to “Southern exposure …

  1. Hooray, while it’s not quite perfect (but it looks great to me) you are sewing again. It’s bugging me that I haven’t made this pattern, it’s such a cute blouse. Perhaps it will be my first project post Tasmania holiday 🙂

  2. This is looking rather sassy! The ties are super cute undone 😀 I found the fit on this a little flowy for me- I need some more structure or it needs to be tucked into a high waisted shirt or the like.

  3. Your collar looks great! Mine never quite lay right- this is so pretty on you!

  4. So glad you’re back in the zone! This is a very cute blouse. I’m sorry the fabric wasn’t cooperative, but the print is adorable.

  5. Far too cute for a bank clerk! Sorry about your gap-age issues. I am not a fan of chilly kidneys :s
    Re the hump – is it maybe slightly too wide across the upper back? I would be tempted to try oinning a dart on each shoulder to see if that helps.
    Lovely though!

  6. It’s very pretty-you could wear it with denim shorts/ mini-skirt to stave off any ‘mumsy’ worries (although I don’t think it looks mumsy at all). XD

  7. How lovely to see this fabric in something else!! I like it too, but like you say, it’s horrible being aware of waist gap ( wear longer vest underneath tucked in to jeans?!) but it wasn’t a nice sew for me either…I was surprised how tough it was, but maybe I was using wrong needles…worth persevering with though, you’ve reminded me how nice this pattern is

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