FINISHED! Gerties L'Estrange Sailor's blouse

When I visited Tessuti* a couple of months ago I knew immediately that this fabric would become a Gertie Sailor's blouse. I have been enamoured with this blouse ever since seeing the post on Paunnet of her version of this blouse and Gertie's Creative Bug workshop and was just looking for the right fabric. I think this fabric has the right amount of a nautical feel without being too obvious. The fabric, is Liberty of London L'Estrange and is from the Autumn Winter 2012 Printing and Dyeing Story. 

The Fabric Story from Liberty of London:  A unique floral check design representing straightness of fit. The Printing and Dyeing story was created to promote to customers the amazing printing skills and techniques that go into a rotary or screen printed Liberty Art Fabric and each design portrays a different printing hurdle. The Liberty Design Studio visited ‘Standfast and Barracks’ a British furnishing and apparel printer with a heritage stretching back 80 years which offers a wide range of specialist printing techniques and dye shades. The Liberty Art Fabrics team worked with the studio at Standfast to develop new looks and techniques when printing.

Gertie's Sailor Blouse
Now onto the blouse and the workshop.  I've spoken before about my frustration with the pdf that comes with this course.  I suppose it is possible to paste the pattern together but it is not straight forward and I definitely expect a bit more from a print at home pattern.  I couldn't find the sizing chart either.  I hope that Creative Bug take on the comments I sent as they have some really great courses. (Update 11 September - the PDF has now been fixed - thanks Creative Bug!!) For those of you who have done Craftsy courses, you might miss, as I did, the interaction that you can have with the teacher and the ability to ask questions and provide feedback. 
Gertie's Sailor Blouse
In the end, because I really wanted to make the blouse,I just bought Gertie's book as the pattern is a variation of her Portrait Blouse.  I will definitely be making the non variation version in the future!  The fit is so flattering! In the end, it wasn't such a bad thing to finally buy her book.  I'm sure I'll make something else out of it and there is a lot of good information in it. 
Gertie's Sailor Blouse
In terms of making it, I really enjoyed watching and listening to Gertie. She has a lovely lovely manner and voice.   I did miss having instructions to follow, as I found I kept missing points because I was doing and watching.  Note to self - watch the episode through once without doing anything first!

Drafting the collar seemed so straightforward, but in the end, I think I botched mine up.  It doesn't sit flat and yesterday I was really worried that it looked ridiculous.  I'm less worried today but it isn't exactly right.  The other thing is that I didn't make a muslin (I know I know) so the back of the collar is just a bit big which I would have picked up if I'd done a muslin.  I used the measurements of Gertie's but given I made up a size 4 and I'm pretty short, I could have trimmed it in a centimetre or so on each side.  C'est la vie. 
Gertie's Sailor Blouse
The v at the front also isn't superb and I don't think I finised my binding off there properly. Fortunately the  bow adds a lovely bit of visual interest to that area and disguises the dodgey bit.
Gertie's Sailor Blouse

I don't normally wear such short blouses with jeans, but it works ok, but I can really see myself wearing this in summer with some short and already it's lined up for work tomorrow with my pencil skirt!  It really feels like Spring at the moment and wearing a short sleeve shirt like this was absolutely weather appropriate today. (Need a cold snap desperately though as we are going skiing next weekend - I'm hoping the snow holds!)
Gertie's Sailor Blouse
So despite some issues, I do recommend this workshop, particularly if you already have Gertie's book for the pattern.. I loved learning the triple stitch hem and doing my first lapped zipper.  

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Finally, after a hilarious post on taking photos of her lovely Miss Chalmers skirt and then a follow up, thought provoking post by Thewallina on taking selfies and being a bit creative with our photo taking (and smiling!), I left my driveway for an 'on location' shoot today down at the Canberra Yacht Club.  It's not perfect as I was super self conscious as I was surrounded by families celebrating Father's day but I did it.  It was my first time using a remote and I can thoroughly recommend it... what a difference it makes to taking a selfie!

* I have now made up outfits using all 4 pieces bought from Tessuti - might be time for another visit :)

39 comments:

  1. This looks fantastic! I love it! And I love my camera remote, just got one for my 40th. I was so tired of waiting for my photographer (AKA my hubby) to be around during daylight hours. The shots from my post today (http://www.sewunravelled.com/2013/09/knit-sweater-love-my-burnished-cape-cod.html) are my first attempt and I was super happy. I need to practice to get your results :)

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  2. Thank you and thanks so much for the link to your post. What an amazing jumper!!! You should be so proud of it. Yes, I could never get anyone to take my photos. Thumbs up to the remote!

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  3. Perfect fabric for this pattern, and - as I've come to expect - you've done a fabulous job! It looks gorgeous :) I must investigate this camera remote!!

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  4. It looks lovely. I had my husband take some pics for me today and they were weird and he didn't tell me I had the droopiest bra ever. I'll stick with my icecream container balanced on decking railing/self timer combination I think!

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  5. Thank you! It isn't my 'cleanest' make but it is a cute style. If you ave to do selfies, then I recommend the remote!

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  6. Ha ha ha, oh gosh, everytime I've asked Ben to take pictures he takes the worst ones l!! It's like he isn't even looking. I had to get a tripod after the camera fell off the wheelie bin and smashed the lens.

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  7. LOVE your sailor blouse! Gosh it's cute and it's perfect with jeans. Good job on the photos too. It's so tough to get pics sometimes. I may have to invest in a remote as well.

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  8. Thanks Margo! All your photos are just perfect so I wouldn't change a thing.... but the remote - after one use - is great!

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  9. This looks so great on you! I love it styled both ways. And of course, the fabric is amazing!

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  10. Kirsty, I LOVE your new blouse. The collar creates such a lovely silhouette! Great job with self-pics :)

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  11. I agree with Thewallinna that it is a perfect silhouette on you! Great fabric (as usual) and I love pieces that can be dressed up or down. I don't think I'll be taking this class based on your review, but maybe I'll buy the book. Great job on the pics too. I'm always asking my husband and L to take them and saying 'does my hair look ok, is my (dress, top, skirt) wrinkled or weird looking'. They always say everything's fine, but not so much in the final pics. Then I don't want to ask them to take another set.

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  12. It's really pretty! Love the style and your choice of fabric means it doesn't look at all sailor-costumey. I'd love to make this top but it just started getting colder in London so I'll wait until next Spring now. You definitely won't regret buying Gertie's book, it's amazing!

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  13. Thanks so much Tilly! There is always room on the shelf for another sewing book and already I've enjoyed having it.

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  14. Ha ha ha so true! I think I'm stuck with taking my own photos! Thanks for your lovely comments on the blouse as well. The sun is shining here today for an unseasonably warm early spring day so the sailor blouse is going on!

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  15. Thanks Inna. I thought of you and tried to smile but next time I have to work it more!

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  16. I can't imagine a blouse that better encapsulates your style! How lovely. And it looks really versatile, too.

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  17. Aww I felt like I was with you in spirit ;) The location looks so romantic! I love boats and all sea-related stuff. Don't be too harsh on yourself: your do smile and your smile is absolutely adorable !

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  18. It's so pretty! And it looks like 2 different blouses because the front and back are so different. I kind of like the big sailor collar at the back, it sort of makes a little designer statement. And it looks great, both dressed down casual and work appropriate with a skirt. I think it's your choice of fabric, I must really get the hang of choosing fabrics.
    I have not tried bias binding a v neck before so I imagine it must be tricky. But it looks like you did a good job to me.
    And you look so natural in the photos, I wouldn't have guessed you took them on your own!

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  19. It looks great on you! The fabric choice is perfect and the style suits you very well!

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  20. The blouse came out great!! I love your fabric and the flutter around the neckpiece makes the sailor collar much softer and more feminine than those from the 70s.

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  21. Thanks Morgan. I wore it to work yesterday with a pencil skirt and it was perfect. I agree, it really nails my style.

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  22. Thanks Erin! The v is not right on the inside, it's hidden so you can't see but I didn't turn the ends under properly (I couldn't find the instructions in the workshop and should have looked for a way to do it on the internet) so I'm just praying it doesn't fray...I'll have to use a few dots of fray stop!!!

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  23. Thank you! It is so fun to wear. I wore it to work yesterday and felt that it just added a lovely amount of fun to the day :)

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  24. Great top. I thought you must have gone away for the weekend to somewhere tropical - it looks too coastal to be Canberra! I'm yet to brave the outside world for selfies - but I do love my camera remote

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  25. Thanks Kristy. I'm not sure how often I'll be braving the outside world! Where there's a lake there's always some boats! It doesn't look at all Canberra except when you see the Captain Cook Memorial Jet peeking through.

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  26. I love these photos-there's something nostalgic about the location that reminds me of holidays as a child.. The front of the blouse is lovely-like you say, I'm not so sure about the back.. you're totally pulling it off though and good on you for drafting bits yourself. Maybe the next time you use a back collar like that you could make the top a bit more boxy so the silhouette would stay straight all the way through?

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  27. What?! Silly? Nooo this looks so great on you! I love the front view so much wirh this print. The bow makes it so charming

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  28. These photos are wonderful. You did an excellent job.
    Kirsty, your blouse looks wonderful. Keep at it and I hope you have great skiing weather.

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  29. It's really cute on you! I'd love to know more about your remote - it looks a lot fancier than mine!

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  30. Did you holiday at Lake Burley Griffin as a child? Thank you for being so honest on the top. I do agree the whole thing isn't exactly right and the top could, despite that is the way we were supposed to draft it, benefit from a boxier fit. Oh, well... it is funnish to wear and I feel very buck rodgers in the 25th century going to a sailor party.

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  31. Thanks ! and thanks for your positive ski weather thoughts :)

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  32. Thanks Gillian! Somehow I don't think the remote is fancier than yours.... it's just a remote that is made for the Canon - when you have a Canon that isn't high end enough (:() for it to come with it's own remote so you have to attach another contraption to the camera to get it to work. Sure beats pressing the button though, sprinting to the spot and then finding that none of your photos are in focus :) What sort of remote do you have?

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  33. Great photos! And the the blouse is so you! Love that fabric you chose for it.
    Can you believe my pretty cannon doesn´t have the option of using a remote? I asked but it is so. The only chance they gave me is to use one the one that goes with a cable, and of course that shows on the pics. I´ll carry on using my kids!

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  34. Merche, my cannon doesn't either - I have the same probelm that I could get one with a cable! But.... the camera store recommended a 'hahnel' brand which fits all cameras. Win!

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  35. Stunning blouse - I love the retro sailor collar

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  36. Thanks Gail. It is great fun to wear.

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