pattern review · sewing

{ McCALLS 6650 } Keyhole blouse…

mccalls6650_frontAt the heart of this blouse is McCalls 6650 however I made enough changes to the neckline for it to essentially be any basic blouse front & back with modifications.  I used McCalls 6650 because I needed a basic bodice but also because it mentions the blouse is loose fitting, I wanted to see exactly how loose fitting before I made a 6650 of my own, neckties, sleeves & all. The reviews thus far have been somewhat mixed however the majority of sewers have mentioned the fullness of the necktie being a little too full & some of you had mentioned the sleeves causing some restriction.

Anyhow, below are the deets on how I did it :

{ DESCRIPTION } As already mentioned : loose fitting, pullover tops with gathered front neckline and back-button placket. Various options on no sleeves, short sleeves or long as well as no neck tie finished with binding or bias collar which extends into ties.

{ FABRIC USED } I found a soft striped rayon georgette with some stretch on the width. The colours dont immediately read summer, but I think the lime green & orange make it a great fabric for all seasons.

{ SIZING } I cut my usual size allowing for a little extra on the hips however trimmed this off on first fitting because the blouse was loose enough without the extra.

{ INSTRUCTIONS } I did not follow the instructions.

{ CHANGES } I cut only the front & back of this pattern as if I was going to make up View A. I cut the front on the width of the fabric & the back on the length allowing for the stripe/pattern change between the back & front. Since this blouse was so simple, I wanted to add some detail to avoid it being too plain.mccalls6650_side1mccalls6650_side2

I stitched the side seams & shoulder seams together & then fitted & made adjustments to the sizing to suit me. I then measured how low I wanted my keyhole to sit, marked it & cut straight  to that point down the centre of the front. Once the blouse was back on the cutting table, I shaped the  keyhole using pins & then re-fitted. At this point I also lowered the neckline so that it wasnt sitting so high & added 2 small pleats each side of the keyhole to keep the shape & avoid the “flaps” from sagging.mccalls6650_closeup

I omitted the placket/buttons to the back because the top would still slip over my head due to the keyhole.

I made strips of binding using the same fabric & got on with binding the keyhole first, then the neckline allowing the neckline binding to cover the tops of the keyhole & allowed extra for the keyhole opening ties. I did not make these strips on the bias because the fabric has sufficient stretch however the keyhole could have benefited from a bias strip not only to get it easier around the curve but also because a bias strip would have given the keyhole a diagonal stripe which would have looked quite cool. In hindsight, I could have gone narrower with the binding but as you probably know, sewing binding is not the easiest to do with a rayon because its hard to keep its shape, unlike cotton which is a breeze to bind with.mccalls6650_back

{ LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY } ** Super easy at first, but the binding was a beeatch to get right!

{ TIME } Cutting & sewing up the side seams & shoulders took under an hour. The fiddling around with the keyhole & binding took almost 3 times as long as the rest.

{ LESSONS LEARNT }  Sewing slow will minimize top stitching mistakes & get you your desired finish!!

{ SUM IT UP } I really like the way this blouse turned out, especially the clash of the stripes on the sides. I can wear this with a pair of jeans or dress it up with a black, cream or army green skirt for work…it just works as a great cross-over blouse.

Many years ago I spotted the image below in a magazine & loved the keyhole tie so I kept the image for inspiration.  keyhole_blouse

I know there are mixed reviews about this pattern but the shape & fit of this blouse is really good IMO. It could be because I have not yet attempted the blouse with the necktie or sleeves….but we shall soon see 🙂

I have already worn this as part of MMMay’13, however I am a little behind on processing the pics for MMMay….should be good to go soon though.

Thanks for stopping by x

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6 thoughts on “{ McCALLS 6650 } Keyhole blouse…

  1. Very nice blouse! Love the colors, and I love that it just looks cool, comfortable, and carefree! I can see this being an all-favorite, go-to blouse! 🙂

  2. Yay for easy wear blouses! And I imagine it’ll be nice and cool in the summer. 🙂 Love your keyhole detail, and it doesn’t seem that hard to do.

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