Hello Sew-Alongers! It’s a great day, it’s Friday, and today we’re finishing up our blouses! Just in time to wear out this weekend, if you’re fast. Or, wear it to work on Monday, to start the week off in style. So let’s get to it!
Today, we’ll be sewing our Sleeve Ruffles to the armhole, if you’re making View B. After that, we’ll add the armhole binding, which is sewn on just like the neck binding. We’ll sew up the side seams, hem the blouse, and we’re done!
This is a long post, especially if you’re making View B! But now you’ll have all the photos and tips you need to finish it up this weekend.
Need to get caught up on Sew-Along posts? Here are links to the earlier posts:
- Pendrell Sew-Along: Supply List, Schedule & Sew-Along Badge
- Pendrell Sew-Along #2: Prewashing your Fabric
- Pendrell Sew-Along #3: Measuring and Choosing Your Size
- Pendrell Sew-Along #4: Shortening the Blouse Length
- Pendrell Sew-Along #5: Altering The Hip and Waist
- Pendrell Sew-Along #6: Princess-Seam FBA (Full Bust Adjustment)
- Pendrell Sew-Along #7: Cutting Your Fabric
- Pendrell Sew-Along #8: Bonus Post! Cutting Scalloped-Edge Lace
- Pendrell Sew-Along #9: Checking In
- Pendrell Sew-Along #10: Underlining The Pendrell Blouse
- Pendrell Sew-Along #10.5: More on Underlining & Basting
- Pendrell Sew-Along #11: Sewing! Plus, Finishing Your Edges
- Pendrell Sew-Along #12: Constructing and Attaching the Draped Sleeve
- Pendrell Sew-Along #13: Gathering Ruffles
- Pendrell Sew-Along #14: Attaching Bias Binding to the Neckline
- Pendrell Sew-Along #15: Sewing Side Panels
You’ll need your half-constructed blouse, your armhole binding pieces, and your sleeve ruffles if you’re making View B.
Take your blouse, and open it out flat, right side facing up. If you’re not making the ruffled version, skip ahead to the armhole binding step.
Match up the centre notch of the seam ruffle with the shoulder seamline on the blouse, and pin through all layers.
Pin the ends of the seam ruffle to the blouse, ending at the notches. Hint: It’s easier to adjust the gathers, if you pin the ruffle with the longer, bobbin-threads facing up, so you can find the threads to pull easily!
Pin in between the ends, using as many pins as you need to feel comfortable.
Repeat with the other side.
Baste the ruffle to the body, adjusting the gathers. If you need to pull them up a little to fit, pull up the bobbin threads as shown.
Here’s what it should look like after the sleeve ruffles are attached:
Ok! If you’re making View A and C, jump in here! Take your armhole binding pieces, and fold them in half lengthwise.
Give them a gentle press with the iron, and baste 1/4″ (6mm) from the raw edge. This basting is just to keep the binding folded, in case you were wondering!
Take the folded binding pieces, and pin them to the armhole of your blouse. If you’re not sure which is the front and back, compare the binding pieces to your pattern pieces, looking for the notches to show you which way to line up the binding.
Pin the armhole binding to the shoulder seam, matching the notch to the seamline. Pin the ends of the binding to the ends of the armhole, aligning the edges.
Put as many pins as you like in between, and get ready to sew on the armhole binding.
Sew binding to armhole, taking a 5/8″ (1.5cm) seam allowance. I find it easier to line up the folded edge of the binding with the opposite side of the presser foot, so that it’s even.
Once the binding is sewn, trim seam allowance to 1/4″ (6mm). If you remember sewing on your neck binding, these steps are very similar! Easier, perhaps, since you’re working flat instead of in a circle.
Fold the binding to the inside and press lightly.
Pin binding to inside, like so. It should lie flat as you pin it, not sticking up at all either to the front or back. Give the binding more ease around the curves, it shouldn’t be pulled tightly or there’s a chance it will ‘rope’ – roping is what happens to create diagonal wrinkles and strain lines along the binding.
Sew binding to armhole, stitching close to the fold with the wrong side of the blouse facing you.
Once you’re done, give the binding a press to set the stitches, and to smooth out the binding. Here’s a close-up shot, showing the right side and wrong side of the binding:
Now, we’re going to sew up our side seams! Still with me? It’s a lot of photos, but when you sew it yourself, it will seem much faster! (Hopefully!)
Start under the armhole, and pin the sideseam together, right sides together, lining up the finished binding edges. This is the most important part of our sideseam! We constructed our armhole binding flat, but now we need to make sure the sideseam lines up perfectly, as we can’t change the binding.
Side note: When I wrote the instructions, I decided it was more important to make the armhole binding easier, by constructing it flat, and then sewing up the side seam. Alternately, you could sew the sideseam, and then add the armhole binding like we did for the neck binding. But it’s harder to sew the armhole binding this way and has a tendency to stick out around the lower curves.
Pin the rest of the sideseam, lining up the hemline.
Sew side seams, and finish the seam allowances. Before you do finish the seam allowances, check to make sure the top edge of the sideseam, right under the armhole, lines up perfectly. If it doesn’t, rip it out and re-adjust it so the edge is straight. (Otherwise, you’ll have this little crooked bit under your arm – not cute! It’s worth taking time to do an inch of unpicking to get it right.)
Now we’re going to tack the sideseam to the armhole, so it stays put, facing the back. Fold the seam allowances towards the back. If you have any serging tails, tuck them into the folded seam allowance so they’re out of the way.
With the seam allowances folded to the back, take a few machine stitches up and down to tack the seam allowances in place. I stopped the tack at the armhole binding topstitching, and backstitched up and down, keeping the stitching above the stitching line for a tidy look.
All we have left to do is the hem!
I like to hem my blouse by serging the hemline, and then stitching the hem twice for a finished look. I’m always going to wear my blouse tucked in, so the hem really doesn’t matter. I want it to be strong and never need to be re-stitched. You can hem your blouse any way you like!
Finish the bottom edge, and press up the hem allowance. This is a good time to try on the blouse, and see if you want to shorten the length at all. If you do, simply trim off the extra and make your hem at the new length.
I stitched my hem once, and then turned it over to the right side of the blouse to sew the second row of stitching. That way, I can use the first row of stitching as a guide! I lined up the edge of my presser foot and stitched a second row around the hem.
Lastly, give your blouse a final press. Here’s a little finishing cheat-sheet:
- Press side seams towards the back
- Press princess seams towards centre
- Press hem from the wrong side, to avoid show-through of the serging on the right side of the blouse
- Remove any visible basting or edgestitching (carefully!)
That’s it! You’re done! A pretty finished blouse in less than a month, if you’ve followed the sew-along steps exactly. Go take pictures, and post them in the Sewaholic Patterns Flickr Group!
I know there are a TON of Pendrells finished so far, all around the world! So exciting! I’ve been collecting the links and hope to share some of them next week. If you’re finished your blouse, leave a link below in the comments to your post! I’d love to round up as many as possible and share them on my blog, if that’s OK with you guys.
Have a great weekend, everyone! I’ll try and get some photos of the new blouse modelled, and finish up some of the other ones. (Maybe you can finish up your blouses while the Super Bowl is on?) Whatever you’re up to, hope it’s a good one!