Sencha From Heaven – Almost

Sencha blouse with Jenny skirt

I’m torn. I really am. I’ve finished my Sencha blouse from Colette Patterns. For a moment during construction, I thought it was going to be really tight around the tummy area and that I’d be obliged to wear it tucked into skirts. In fact, it fits just right – testament to Colette’s sizing.

But… Why are there those niggling doubts in my head? First of all, check out the neckline. It’s so close to my throat – and normally I prefer lower necklines to balance my round face. I feel ever so slightly claustrophobic. Not the pattern’s fault – I should have noticed this detail. And in the name of balanced feedback, I should say that the neckline of this blouse makes it fab for wearing brooches.

Also, I’m really not convinced by the snapper detail on the back. A blouse freshly ironed and worn only for ten minutes shouldn’t look like this, should it? I was uber careful with placement of the snappers, but I don’t know… It’s just not doing it for me.

I am tempted to remake this blouse with a different neckline and losing the snapper detail. I have already successfully wriggled out of this blouse, keeping the centre snappers shut. Even with the blouse’s nipped in waist, I can still just slip it over my Lady Shelf. So I might have a go, because this blouse has a truly lovely retro feel and I love, love, love the sleeve detail.

I must stress to other makes of the Sencha blouse, choice of fabric is absolutely crucial. The cotton I’ve used feels a bit too stiff. Ooh, I told myself, whilst mulling this over. Sencha would work wonderfully in a thick, drapey silk. But, no – it wouldn’t. If you’re going to have buttons or snappers on the back, you need a fabric that can take their weight without gaping. See the dilemma? Unless you just get rid of those buttons…

Okay, one final quibble and then I’ll stop. The pattern recommends buying 1 & 7/8 yards of fabric. Which is the best part of 2 yards, right? So why do I have really quite a lot of fabric left over? I don’t understand! Has anyone else encountered this?

So. Thoughts on the Sencha blouse? A success? Room for improvement? A bit of both, in my opinion. If I have a go at an adjusted second version, this will mark a significant step in my growth as a Sewist. It will be my first ever attempt at adjusting a pattern. Tips or hints – you know where I am. (On the sofa, actually.)

Hope you’re all having good weekends!

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7 Responses to Sencha From Heaven – Almost

  1. Tilly says:

    I have to say, the neckline is a problem for me too – I haven’t worn my Sencha because I feel like I’m choking in it! I do love the style though so should give it another whirl at some point, adjusting it to give a bit more room to breathe. Yours looks lovely – I’m not sure why it’s doing that at the back, but how does it look tucked in? And yes! What’s with the vast amounts of leftover fabric?! Looks like enough to make a whole second blouse!

  2. Phew! Glad to know it’s not just me. Yes, the blouse can be worn tucked in, though this slightly robs it of that lovely nipped in effect … that looks a bit pants round the back. This is a blouse of two halves!

  3. Karin says:

    It looks good around the waist, but I agree about the neckline and the back. I have no experience with changing patterns, so I can’t offer any help or advice, though I will be interested to see how you get on.

  4. jennifer says:

    I am absolutely no expert on this but on another blog I read (La Sewista) she was making a muslin for a dress and shows how she has to take an horizontal dart across the waist to allow for a sway back (shown on ‘green dress muslin part two’). That might help with the tuck its getting at the back waist (?). I am also pretty sure theat Gertie has made this blouse, she may well have suggestions or tips.

  5. Roobeedoo says:

    I think it is the pattern / style that’s at fault here. Every Sencha I have seen has had similar issues at the back, as if it was meant to puff out over the top of a high waistband, having been tucked in… in which case why bother with buttons / snaps all the way down? You could always do the “keyhole” neck at the front to give a bit more air? I have bought a similar, but vintage, pattern, in the hope that the “real thing” will lie better. Fingers crossed!

  6. anais.ananas says:

    Thank you! It’s good to know I’m not the only one with the same issues!

  7. Pingback: My Handmade Style: Karen from Did You Make That? | Stitch and Witter

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