Capital Chic that is!
Capital chic is a brand new indie designer out of London with a cute line of sewing patterns. You can read more about them here. I’ve been on the hunt for a simple blouse that had potential to be a versatile TNT (that’s “tried-n-true”) pattern, and I decided to try their Bellini pattern. Here’s a look at the line drawing of this very simple pattern:
That little scalloped collar was a no-go for my fifty-something sensibility so I went with View A. I particularly like this design because the cap sleeves are designed as part of the blouse rather than as a set-in addition. I had any number of fabrics in my stash that this would work for (hence the versatility) but I settled on a Robert Kaufman dark blue chambray. Here are the four pattern pieces laid out and ready for cutting:
Yep, that’s it. What also makes this pattern really nice is that the designers included directions for inside finishes like french seams and a rolled hem
Again a moment of thanks for the edging foot that makes these tiny hems possible. This pattern uses bias binding to finish the armholes. I decided to dig into my old quilting cotton pile to find something complementary rather than cut into my extra yard of chambray. Here’s a look:
Anyone who has stayed in my guest room would recognize this tan fabric from the quilt on that bed. I really like the contrasting fabric peeking out.
In the interest of keeping it real, I did have a bit of a fiddly (sewing term!) time with the collar, and after reading reviews from a few pattern testers I think it was a mix of pattern glitch and my inexperience that resulted in this:
Not terrible, but the little puckers up there are a result of a less than perfect fit between the collar piece and shirt opening. A better sewist might have been able to do better with it but I decided to just iron it out. Not a huge issue.
On a final note regarding the pattern, this was the first time that the pattern directions were entirely metric! I grumbled about this a bit and then googled a conversion program. All of my measuring tools have both inches and centimeters but the hem was measured in millimeters. I was surprised that the designers didn’t include both kinds of measurements. Guess I’m just one of those Americans.
But that bit of grumbling aside I can’t complain because this is easily the best-fitting blouse I have made. Spot on without even one adjustment. For me anyway the design and proportions are perfect.
I’m thinking that version two will be a rayon challis leopard print. Hmmm. I can hear Nathan Lane in “The Birdcage” saying “What? No good?“. We shall see.
And on another note, if you’re wondering about that goldish aura around me that’s the beautiful brown/gold paint that is the backdrop of our cavernous bedroom. I really need to call a decorator 🙂