How not to fit a garment

So when I was fitting my Jasmine blouse I put in a pin to tell me where it needed an adjustment.  Somehow this got lost when I took the blouse off and despite much searching could not be found……..that is until several hours later when I went to put my cycling helmet on.  Yes, the pin had been lodged in my hair all that time and made it’s presence known in a very uncomfortable fashion.

It reminded me of Edward Lear’s Old Man with a Beard and makes me wonder what else is in there.

There was an Old Man with a beard,
Who said, ‘It is just as I feared!
Two Owls and a Hen,
Four Larks and a Wren,
Have all built their nests in my beard!’

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Jasmine fitting issues (and bodices in general)

I’ve learnt (the hard way) that you need to use a very similar fabric to the one for the final garment for a toile.  The fabric I am using for this blouse is quite light and drapy, not at all like the calico I have stashed away for test runs.  I therefore decided to make up the shell of the blouse and fit that before adding sleeves and collars etc.

I wasn’t sure exactly which size to make.  I’ve read al the instructions about using your upper bust measurement and then altering the pattern pieces to fit your cup size.  As I am a D cup and the pattern is written for a C cup I assumed I would have to put in a (small) full bust adjustment.  The problem is that my upper bust measurement is only a smidgen smaller and falls in to the same size group as my full bust measurement so I am never quite sure how best to manage bodice fitting (does anyone have any suggestions?)

In the size correct for both full and upper bust, the blouse fits well at the bust and around the arms; the darts are positioned correctly for my body and I don’t feel the need to adjust the armscyes or the length of the shoulder seams. Above the bust though I have about two inches of slack at the top of the central seam and there is a big gape in the back neck.  I have tried taking in the central seams at this point but find this causes a strange bulge just below my breasts Also it raises the neck line to a ludicrously high point which I suppose I could fix by  cutting the V down further.

How would you go about fixing this – any ideas gratefully received!

What should I do with this fabric?

Last year, around the time I started sewing, I bought this fabric from the V&A website.  It is a very pretty reprint of a Horrocks fabric, not as stiff as a quilting cotton but not as fine as a  lawn.

I had thought to use it for a skirt but when it arrived I discovered that the stripes are horizontal not vertical.  Internet shopping doesn’t always get you what you want; I couldn’t quite see myself wearing a skirt with horizontal stripes (although a lot of the Horrocks’s dresses were made with horizontal stripes).  The V&A kindly offered to refund me the cost of the fabric but I thought it was nice enough to keep for something else.  The question is what?

I’m thinking of Jasmine by Colette patterns which is very pretty, much prettier than my usual style.  It is also cut on the bias which would mean the stripes would form a chevron across the top.

What do you think?  Should I try this pattern or do you have any better suggestions?

P.S. I see the V&A have the same fabric in a pretty lavender colour way on special offer at the moment