I bought this delightful octopus fabric to make myself a tunic.  It is from Cotton+Steel and it is their cotton lawn substrate.  At first the fabric seemed very stiff and little bit heavy for a lawn, but after I pre-washed and dried it, it was soft with just enough body to it so that it didn’t feel flimsy.  Perfect for a blouse.

Cotton+Steel cotton lawn

Of course the impulse was to cut into it right away.  I love starting new projects, and was particularly eager for this fabric to arrive in the mail so I could get to it.  The grand plan being – make a lined, sleeveless Washi tunic, pattern by Rae of Made-by-Rae. You can buy her pattern and see lots of inspiration & tutorials on her website. Then that little voice inside, the one that comes from a place of logic and reason, the voice that carries wisdom and experience with it, had something to say.  Sometimes I don’t like nor agree with this voice.  Our conversation went something like this.

Me: Oh, I looove this, lets start now.  It’s prewashed and everything.

Logical me:  Um, that fabric was expensive.  Maybe you want to test a muslin first.

Me:  Naw, this pattern has plenty of ease in it.  And, the elastic shirring in the back to pull it all together – it will be fine.

Logical me: Well… have you actually looked in the mirror lately?  I mean, there’s not really much happening in the chest area (duh) and you should probably test it out.  The pattern says its made for a B cup.

Me:  [Checks all the bras in the chest of drawers.]  Humph.

Logical me:  And, ya know, that fabric wasn’t exactly cheap or anything… (yes, logical me used this argument more than once – it often works)

Me:  Dammit, I hate it when you are right.  Fine.

Sometime later…

Me:  Oh, thank goodness I did a muslin and then a small bust adjustment.  Because now, the fit is perfect.  This new blouse is going to look so gooooood. It really didn’t even take that long!

Logical me: (nothing – she’s very polite and never gloats)

Drafted bodice pattern piece.  You can see the three areas where the tissue overlaps.  This is where the pattern was reduced for a better fit.

Drafted bodice pattern piece. You can see the three areas where the tissue overlaps. This is where the pattern was reduced for a better fit.

I vowed some time ago, maybe this happens when you turn from being a kid to a real adult, to always listen to the voice of reason.  The voice of reason is almost never wrong.  Trust me, if at all possible, make yourself a muslin.  You will be so glad you went to the extra effort!  Take that button down shirt from the closet that your DH never wears, put it to some good use and cut it up for your muslin.  It’ll be fun.  🙂

P.S. I am not going to review a bust adjustment because it’s all been done before on the interwebs.  My favorite source for this type of pattern adjustment is the Colette Sewing Handbook by Sarai Mitnik of Colette Patterns.  Her book not only gives step by step photos and procedure for the adjustment, but also tells you other areas you can apply this type of adjustment to.  Her book is indispensible for the home sewist and that’s a fact.  You can also find out how to do a small or large bust adjustment from Megan Nielsen  her version is nearly identical to the one in the Colette book.  Have fun sewing!

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