Eyelet & Mesh Laurel Blouses

My 2013 sewing target was to sew an item a month and I am excited to share with you that I have ABSOLUTELY busted that target in March and April! I’ve completed a jacket but it’s still considered WIP cos I wanted to add a buckle to the belt and is still waiting for the item to arrive. In addition, I’ve sewed 4 versions of Colette Pattern’s newest sewing pattern, Laurel. Here are the blouse versions.

My wearable muslin is a dress which I will share in my dress post later. While I made very little changes to other sewing patterns from Colette such as the macaron and parfait, I had to make quite a lot of changes to the Laurel. So, I would highly recommend making a muslin if you are keen to sew the Laurel.

White eyelet Laurel blouse

White eyelet Laurel blouse

My white eyelet Laurel blouse is made with a cotton stripe eyelet fabric from fabrics and trimmings a few years ago. This fabric has a sweet, understated scallop edge but was never used as I was concerned that all that white and stripes were going to make me took wider than I was. The trick I eventually figured out was to wear a matching white camisole on the inside because the stripes over the camisole ‘disappears’, creating an optical illusion which fought effectively against the horizontal stripes. I must say the Laurel pattern really helped me stash bust my “less than 3 yards” fabric stash which had not been moving for a long time.

White eyelet Laurel blouse cu

I bought the digital version of the pattern but only printed the dress pattern to save paper. So, my blouses are essentially shorter versions of the dress. I chose a size 4 for shoulders and bust and tapered down to size 0 for the rest. Besides cutting wider armholes (these were tight!), I also lengthened the sleeves which I thought had an awkward length which didn’t flatter my big arms. The length of the blouses were also lengthen as I liked to have the option of wearing them tucked in or out.

White eyelet Laurel blouse side

Another advantage of using a stripe eyelet fabric. This has to be the easiest stripe matching EVER! The hem and sleeves edges were cut on the scallops. This way, no hemming was necessary so a couple of hours was all I needed to get this version done. Near instant gratification!

White eyelet Laurel blouse back

I wore this outfit to pick my son up from school last Friday and received compliments. Sure beat the tees hands down:) The cotton and the eyelets definitely helped cool me down in this heat!

Pink Petal Mesh Laurel blouse

This pretty hot pink petal mesh fabric was from Gorgeous Fabrics some time back. I underlined the bodice with a fuschia silky lining. The lining was so silky that it was a pain to cut! Thank goodness there were only 3 pieces! The sleeves were cut on the selvedge so I didn’t have to hem them.

Petal mesh laurel blouse

Oh! There’s something else I did differently. I didn’t fancy the puffy sleeves so I made adjustments to the top of the sleeves and did without gathers. I find that more flattering for this style.IMG_5351

All seams on both blouses were finished with french seams since they were light weight fabrics.IMG_5347

I wore this blouse to the mall and church yesterday and LOVED it!  Unbeknown to me, hubby was snapping away with his phone camera behind me while I was checking shop windows for inspiration so thank you dear for these back and side back shots:)

Petal Mesh Laurel Blouse side back

And he caught me red handed checking out this amazing pleated dress with what looked like smocking on pleats on the border. Petal Mesh Laurel Blouse back

It looks simple yet amazing! Can anyone tell me what kind of smocking this is? Or how I can recreate this look? I would love to sew this lovely skirt.

Pleated smocked skirt?

I hope you like my Laurel blouses:) They make really good casual wear pieces in my opinion. Have a blessed week!

30 thoughts on “Eyelet & Mesh Laurel Blouses

  1. Both blouses are great! I was planning on sewing a dress from this pattern this week, so I appreciate the tips on alterations. Look like I may need to sew a muslin.

  2. Your blouses look really great, though I thought the Laurel pattern wasn’t interesting or extraordinary, just really a basic block thing. I love your interpretations an the eyelet fabric!

  3. Gorgeous! Both tops are simply beautiful. Of course, my favorite is the pink :).
    The skirt isn’t smocked – it’s pleated, and that kind of pleating is done by a commercial pleater who has specialized equipment. That’s the bad news. The good news is that you can send fabric (polyester is best for holding pleats like that) to a commercial pleater and they can pleat it for you for a fee.


  4. That’s not smocking – that’s pleating!!! Of the very fancy kind. I would recommend getting in contact with the guys at International Pleating (they’re based in NYC but very willing to chat all things pleating with anyone).
    Both blouses are stunningly gorgeous – love the 3d effect of the pink mesh 🙂

  5. !!!! i feel like you’ve made two brand new patterns, adey! these are stunning.

    (and i have no idea how that skirt got so fancy, but if anyone can figure it out, my money’s on you.)

  6. I love everything that you make and this is another example! I especially love the combination of the pink mesh top with the nude colored maxi skirt. Beautiful! I just want to copy it right off your blog 😛
    thank you for sharing!

  7. A couple of really great projects, Adey! They look like designer techniques, yet I love how simply they went together, especially the eyelet blouse. I really like how you manipulated the original dress pattern to get blouses, as well.

  8. These tops are gorgeous! They look so distinctive despite the fact they use the same pattern. Look forward to any info you discover on how that amazing pleating was achieved! How intriguing, and what a dramatic effect.

  9. Really pretty tops, Adey! I especially love the white one with the camisole underneath. So happy to see you posting – your creations are always inspiring!

  10. Aha! I’ve done up 2 muslins already for the Laurel and still haven’t got the fit quite right. I was starting to think there was something wrong with me! I’m glad to hear other people might have had the same issues and glad to see you ended up getting it to come out beautifully regardless. Nice work and thanks for sharing!

  11. Both tops are absolutely gorgeous! I have my dress cut, but since school is back in after spring break I haven’t had a chance to work on it at all. I did one muslin, and I am just praying that my adjustments work. And that skirt you found is amazing….I haven’t a clue how to even attempt that!

  12. These are beautiful! I live the way you fitted them. Grading down at the bust and waist was a great idea. The cut is so flattering!

  13. Thank you everyone for your kind words and encouragement! Hugz!

    @Gorgeous Things @poppykettle: Thank you for letting me know that its pleating. I’ve checked with International pleating and this is called fantasy pleating. Still waiting for them to revert if there’s a minimum yardage requirement. Keeping my fingers crossed!

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  15. I absolutely love your blog. Not only are all your finished items fantastic (they all look professional- without meaning to sound patronising), but you have a great eye for fabric and it is truly inspiring. I also love the pictures that you take of Singapore that show a life that I have never seen, but would love to see (Dengue fever puts me off at the moment!). The idea of taking pictures of well made clothes is an idea that I think I will copy as it is such a great idea. I look forward to forthcoming posts.

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  18. The skirt isn’t smocked, but pleated by the look of it. It will be pleated between 2 hand folded card layers and steamed to give that pretty impressive effect. 🙂

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