Melilot Shirt

Melilot Shirt

The Melilot Shirt by Deer & Doe has been on my make list for quite some time, so I recently took the plunge and made a toile version.

As a larger busted lass, the search for a button up shirt that fits well is eternal, but as Deer & Doe pattern blocks are drafted to a C/D cup the struggle to make a garment fit is somewhat lessened. Praise be to Rhapso, the Greek goddess of Sewing, or whichever cultural equivalent is listening.

My mother was kind enough to gift a beautiful silk/cotton voile from her stash to my cause. The fabric is from SilkWorld in Melbourne and it is a gloriously light fabric with excellent drape for this project. It is a little sheer, so keep that in mind if you choose to use it for your own version. The gifted fabric is the Tearose, which I was skeptical about complimenting my pale complexion, but I would welcome more of this pink shade in my wardrobe. It's a beautiful muted pink with brown undertones, dark enough to easily distinguish from skin tone and not appear naked.

Its just a shame that the toile didn't fit :( Fitted Mum though, so she got a lovely shirt as an early Mother's Day present (had to do the button holes herself, as I had lost the passion to finish it). I may have been short a handmade shirt, but the lessons learned from the toile make were invaluable to making a size for me, so win-win.  I had issues with the fit of the shoulders, arms and the bust point, which meant a day in the studio with my trusty fitting alterations book and I think I have a workable new pattern.



LEVEL : 4/5 (Advanced) Casual shirt with drop shoulders. Version A: long sleeves and rounded collar; Version B: cuffed short sleeves and mandarin collar.  I mixed things up and made Version B with the rounded collar from Version A  

PATTERN SIZING: Available in sizes 32-52 (AU equivalent 6 to 18/20ish depending on brand comparison). See their size chart for more information.  I made the size 50 and I sit at 16F in the bust, 16 through waist and hips.

PHOTO/LINE ART ACCURACY:  Identical to the line art and photography provided.  Bust pockets did seem a little out of proportion for the size 50 and a little far apart, but that’s probably down to my bust size. I carefully unpicked this feature and steamed out the holes. The lined pockets are a neat little feature and I'd visit them again once I'm confident in the overall fit.

INSTRUCTION ACCURACY:  Fully constructed with French seams (love me a good French seam) so the garment finish is beautiful inside and out. The most difficult part of the whole pattern for me is the curved hem. Instructions for the double turned hem are adequate for an experienced sewist, but could be seen as lacking for some. The pattern difficultly is 4/5, so this is an advanced finish. I had luck pressing the hem with the help of a pressing ham, which I'll document in the next version.

FABRIC USED:  Silk/cotton voile (30%silk/70% cotton) in Tearose from SilkWorld

PATTERN ALTERATIONS/DESIGN CHANGES:  No changes made for this initial version, apart from removal of the pockets. Next iteration will require additional depth in the arm/shoulder and moving the bust point down by 2cm.

REPEAT PERFORMANCE:  Absolutely! The next version is already on the cutting table, with a square shoulder and bust adjustment completed (which I'll also document).