You may have heard last week that Jennifer Lauren Vintage released her first sewing pattern! It’s a darling basic blouse with a vintage appeal, and is quick to sew together, hence the name ‘afternoon’ blouse.
Now, why do I know this? Because I was one of her lucky pattern testers!
The blouse really is a nice and easy make, and that was one of Jen’s goals. It was based on an original 1950s blouse pattern but she updated several aspects. It’s only available as a PDF but even my PDF-hesitant self had no problem putting it together.
There are no darts and only a little shaping at the waist as it’s meant to have a blousy fit. Along with cut-on sleeves (which you surely know by now are my favorite of all time), this blouse is a fantastic little vintage staple, so you can see right off why I’d like it!
The blouse pulls over your head which might be deceptive from the button and decorative shaped part of the neckline, but it’s actually seamed up the center front to that point. I had only one of these pretty white vintage buttons in my stash, and it was perfect!
I made a muslin first since I wasn’t sure about sizing, even for something so basic in shape. I have a 34″ bust and was in-between the 8 and 10, so I went with the 10 for the muslin. Overall it was a bit too big, so for my final blouse I went down to an 8 everywhere except the bust, which I left at a 10.
The fit looks right, but when I move around, it somehow feels extra baggy above the bust. So I need to iron this out next time. But it’s definitely completely wearable. In the meantime, I tacked shut the v-neck where the two bodice sides meet just for additional modesty.
I used a lightweight Japanese cotton from Lecien’s Flower Sugar collection and it was wonderful for this blouse! Now, red is my favorite color but I don’t have much red clothing because I’m so picky about the shade. But this really is My Red. And with the adorable floral print? Swoon!
I’m usually one to tuck in my blouses, but it’s also really cute untucked! I’m short and have a short torso to boot, so I cut 2 1/4″ off the length of the bodice. That ended up ideal for optimal tuck-in-or-leave-untucked ratio for me.
Oh by the way, I’m wearing this with a corduroy skirt I sewed before I met up with Rochelle in D.C., so it never made it to the blog.
Well it was also somewhat of a tragedy of a sewing project, but it’s done and I still wear it and I try not to remember how crappy it was to make. Entirely unlike the Afternoon Blouse, I assure you!
This blouse really does live up to its name the “Afternoon Blouse” as it can indeed be whipped up pretty quick, even if you’re not that fast at sewing. And I do sew a lot, but I’m not actually that speedy at it, trust me.
I think the only slightly troublesome area is the very center front where you join the facings to the body. For some reason this was easier on my muslin than my final version. The good news is that if one side looks dodgier than the other, you can just lap the front the other way! (Er, no need to ask me why I know this…)
Overall I was quite happy with the pattern. It was easy to put together and trace off the paper pattern (only 4 pattern pieces to cut out!), and the sewing was pretty straight-forward. There’s even two neckline variations–the curved one that I went with, or pointed. And I think if I tweak the sizing for a future version, I’ll have a great basic blouse pattern to rely on!
If you think the Afternoon Blouse looks like your cup of tea, then pop on over to purchase the PDF. It’s a lovely vintage style and once I ever get off my obsessive dressmaking kick, I’m sure to sew up another!
This is so cute on you! I love it! The print and style are so you!
When I saw this blouse pattern released, I thought of you! I’d love to sew a few of these for summer to go with all the new skirts I’ve been working on. I really love that this blouse is vintagey but loose fitting over the hip. I struggle most with fitting between the bust and hip in my vintage blouse patterns.
That is such a cute blouse! That button is a nice touch. Also, can I just say that I LOVE that cupboard/clock/mirror combo behind you! Fabulous!!
What a cute blouse, and the ability to make it in an afternoon?, that makes it even better.
That blouse is just too freakin’ adorable! That cut (kimono sleeves and v-neck) has been my favorite bodice lately and now I’m thinking of modifying it to be a dress bodice. I love the little button detail!
Aha! Great minds think alike! It’s beautiful Tasha and SSOOO pretty. I’m so pleased to see it in a floral print with the curved neckline as that’s exactly what my second version will be (I’ve just cut it out)! You look fab. x
Ooh it looks fab on – and here’s to a nice straightforward ‘afternoon’ pattern!
Love the nails too 😉
Oh! This is super cute on you. loving your hair too 😀
I can’t wait to make a bunch of these, a simple woven pullover blouse is totally what I want to have more of in my wardrobe.
It’s such a lovely shade of red! The floral print is darling, and the design of the blouse is delightful 🙂 It pairs perfectly with your skirt!
Love it! Looks fun to make.
It looks lovely on you. I always find vintage patterns (and their modern adaptations) a bit big and end up having to downsize. I wonder if this is because women in those days lied about their measurements? Or they just allowed a lot more seamage, or more room to move? I had to cut my 40’s blouse down by a whole size and a half for Sewing for Victory challenge. Thanks for the review. xx Shauna
Thanks, Shauna! I find vintage pattern sizing to be a bit finicky and it really depends on the brand. It’s taken me years to realize I need to be buying by my UPPER bust size for a better fit. But of course most of my patterns are a size too big! Argh.
Your version is wonderful! I bought the pattern after seeing Jane’s version but love seeing this made with patterned fabric.
I think her solid red one is fabulous, so it’s definitely great in prints and solids!
Rochelle New says
(Now that my computer has stopped having a literal seizure – stupid Windows 8…) So seriously cute!!!! I definitely need some more blouses like that in my closet because I’m sick of sewing buttons lately lol. I might have to give this one a try. The name is just tempting enough! I love instant gratification projects 🙂
p.s. for the fourth time, your hair looks soooooooo adorable!
Yes, it’s kind of like the pleasure of a button-up but without, well, buttoning it up. Or sewing buttonholes. 😛
And thank youuuu on my hair. 😉
Great choice of everything!
Bellis Winter says
Great choice of fabric (as usual) !!!! After watching yours, I want one !!!!
Lovely fabric. It is very helpful to have a review of the pattern. I am very tempted by something I could make in an afternoon. It looks great with your new skirt too.
Thanks! Yes, I do think if you pick a fabric that’s not fussy (like a rayon or silk might be), it could easily be accomplished in an afternoon.
Thanks for the tip!
Oh! I think this would look great with 30s outfits too.
Ooh yes definitely! I think it’s nicely versatile like that.
Jessica Cangiano says
Goodness, it’s absolutely lovely! It also seems like something that would be idea for a relatively novice sewer. It’s so cool – and inspiring – to see fellow bloggers and online friends like you and Jennifer release patterns into the world (and see what others create with them).
Lovely blouse and that fabric is a beautiful colour 😉
The blouse, the skirt, that lovely button, everything is perfect:-)
and I totally admire your hair style!
I love this and will definitely buy it and try it. One of the things that puts me off about vintage sewing is that I’m worried it’s complicated. This will be a great little top to give a vintage look without too much stress (and I really will try some proper vintage sewing too soon – I know there’s quite abit of information on yours and Rochelle’s blogs which I am sure I will use!). I think your version looks perfect especially with your corduroy skirt which looks like a great staple.