Italian style + Swedish curtain fabric = interesting blouse

What am I doing making a top out of Ikea fabric when I have just bought all that lovely designer stuff?

Well, it was a project that was not finished when I went shopping, a style I wanted to try and a pattern company I needed to sort out my sizing for.


I should have bought eight new buttons rather than using four red and four black ones from my stash.

I like the ruched shoulders.

I need a sway back adjustment.

Linen is lovely to sew, even when it is course Ikea stuff that is probably meant for curtains.

Next up is the new stuff!


Technical details for this one

Pattern: La Mia Boutique 07-2010-21

Size: 38-44, I made a 44. Apart from needing a swayback adjustment, this fits well, although with not much ease. I cut it out with 13 mm seam allowances but only sewed 10 mm ones (not on purpose, I’m just getting used to the guide on my rotary cutter and didn’t get it quite right this time). This would have added another 3 cm or so of ease. I might be better with a 46 in La Mia Boutique patterns. Or I should make a muslin with each new pattern..

Fabric: Ikea medium to heavy weight linen. I’ve had several coordinating pieces in my stash for A Long Time. I’ve made at least three garments from this ‘collection’, pre blogging and before Pattern Review. I still have some left.

The skirt is BurdaStyle 04-2010-125.

The even more boring technical details: Construction order

La Mia Boutique is an Italian sewing pattern magazine*. Every thing is in Italian, the description, the fabric recommendations, the instructions. I do not read or speak Italian. So I recorded how I made the top, in case I want to make another one. It’s pretty easy, but not super quick.

Interface front band and stand collar. I used a very light weight interfacing and did both the inner and outer stand collar as well as the entire front band (i.e. not just to the fold line).

Staystitch the curves ( ‘armholes’ on upper front , ‘armholes’ on upper side back and neck of centre back). I didn’t staystitch the almost bias edge of the front neck. I should have.

Sew upper side backs to upper centre back.

Sew upper backs to upper front at shoulder seams.

Sew inner back shoulder/sleeve to inner front shoulder/sleeve.

Run a double row of gathering stitch to outer shoulder/sleeve on both the concave and convex curves.

Sew inner shoulder/sleeve to gathered outer shoulder/sleeve on the longest edge (the convex edge). Trim, turn and understitch.

Sew gathered outer shoulder/sleeve onto the upper front and back “armhole”. Trim, turn and press.

Sew lower side backs to lower centre back.

Sew lower side fronts to lower centre fronts.

Run a double row of gathering stitch to upper front and then sew onto lower fronts.

Sew lower back to upper back.

Sew back to fronts at side seams, sewing all the way through outer shoulder/sleeve to the inner shoulder/sleeve.

Turn inner shoulder/sleeve to inside and attach to stitching line of outer shoulder sleeve and front (by carefully stitching through from inside).

Attach front band.- before sewing the band to the front, hem the garment . If you go ahead with my construction order without doing this, you’ll end up with a problem that you have to fix with snipping. Ask me how I know. Sew right side of band to wrong side of fronts. Turn under seam allowance on the free edge of band, fold band along the long foldline right sides together and stitch across the bottom. Turn out and then topstitch band to the front, and on the other long edge.

Collar: Sew collar pieces together on long curved edge, trim and turn. Turn up seam allowance on the outer collar piece (I picked one based on pattern placement, both were interfaced with a very light weight interfacing. If only one piece is interfaced, the interfaced piece is the outer collar).

Attach inner collar right side to wrong side of neck. You will probably need to clip the collar piece. I staystiched the back neck but not the front. I should have. Lucky that linen is easily eased and pressed! My mistake with seam allowances would have added a few extra mm too, to ease in. Trim and turn. Topstitch outer collar onto neck and topstitch other edges too.

Make button holes.

Sew on buttons.

Press and wear!

* Melissa at Fehr Trade and Kaitui Kiwi at The Curious Kiwi regularly review the new issues of La Mia Boutique, and other sewing pattern magazines. They also provide advice on subscribing and purchasing, which is important when you live at the Edge of the World (aka Australia)

11 thoughts on “Italian style + Swedish curtain fabric = interesting blouse

  1. What a super cute top! Do I recognize that skirt pattern? (Another burda, with a pleated bias ruffle?) So kind of you to take the time to go over construction details, too.

    I might need to take a look at La Mia, I’m trying to expand my repertoire… And… Well, it IS important to get good shipping advice when you live at the Edge of the World. 😉 I can’t tell you how many sad little patterns lost their way between The Rest of the World and my mailbox.

  2. Love that blouse, what pretty ruched shoulders. Lovely accent with the red buttons, can you get more and switch the others out? Replace for a whole set if you cannot get more of the same you have used?
    And for the previous post, if that’s what you get for a “nothing” dinner, I’d hate to see what you get when he bothers to cook, lol! Looks delicious.

  3. my subscription to LMB has come and gone and I made 2 patterns. There was plenty more potential stuff I could make but somehow having to translate the Italian made it bottom priority to me. Cute and interesting top.

  4. I have the issue as well and I like your version (and styling) better 🙂 I made a LMB blouse from my first ever issue and it had a fitted sleeve that ended up way too tight, oops, but I fixed it with button loops.
    I’m also a fan of Ikea fabric but we do not have them over here in NZ so I’ll have to stock up next time I pop over the Tasman for a visit.

  5. I have this issue among others , and I have to confess I haven’t been brave enough yet to trace a pattern and make something.Your blouse is pretty and I would never of thought of using IKEA fabric. I found your blog via PR , I love it by the way.

  6. What a cool blouse! Totally different from everything else, and really cute. I like the mixed coloured buttons, but you could always switch them out later, if you wanted to do so. I’d be too lazy, lol!

  7. Very cute blouse. I really need to make more tops that aren’t made from jersey.

    I also wanted to comment to say thanks for your comments on my blog. You were officially my first commenter (except my mum and she doesn’t count because I asked her to read it :)). The links to the french Burda archive is going to be incredibly useful. You also commented that we were sewing twins due to stash and plans – having now looked at your blog (will read through properly very soon) on the current page that comes up you have recently sewn five items that I’ve either sewn or are part of my sewing plans! Also, my husband cooks, although he’s not as creative as yours.

    I’ll be reading your blog regularly from now on.


  8. I have a ready to wear blouse that looks exactly like this blouse with the ruchinga round the armholes, et. but in basic boring white. Yours looks so nice in the print Ikea fabric with the red buttons. I was excited to see this pattern in Mia Boutique and hope to make it myself someday.

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