The Violet blouse from Colette is one of my all-time favorite patterns. I’ve already made it several times as-is from the pattern with no adjustments. I love it in dotted swiss and cotton voile. As per Colette’s usual M.O., Violet has a sweet vintage flair with it’s peter pan collar and gathered sleeves. However, calling on the latest spring trends for inspirations, I wanted to transform this classically styled pattern into something particularly on-trend for the coming season. This look was achieved by a few easy alterations that you can do too with minimal sewing experience.
First the fabric choice: If there’s one thing that I’m seeing everywhere right now, it’s chiffon! The baroque floral polyester chiffon that I chose also reminds me of all of the graphic prints that have been popping up in boutiques and major retailers alike.
Making this blouse in chiffon meant that I ditched doing any of the facings that this pattern called for, even the front placket facings since I thought that it would look awkward in the sheer fabric. Instead I did a wide double-roll hem for the button placket to give it stability.
I also decided to make this variation sleeveless for the warm months ahead so I finished the arm holes with double fold bias tape stitched to the inside instead of sleeves.
I also wanted to show off the beautiful chiffon I chose,so I added a few inches of width to the lower back pattern piece to create more ruffles at the yolk.
And while one of my favorite aspects of the original Violet is the peter-pan collar, I decided to ditch it for a big ol’ neck bow; another feature I love on tops. I made this by cutting a strip of fabric about 5″ wide from selvage to selvage, folding it in half, and attaching it to where the collar would normally go. I then pressed and top-stitched the ends closed.
I also decided to create a high-low effect (another trend that’s absolutely everywhere) by cutting the back longer than the front and curving the hem.
I finished all of my seams with French seams (my preferred method when working with chiffon; it’s easy and looks clean) and hemmed it all with a narrow double rolled hem.
That’s it! These are easy alterations that anyone can do!
-remove facings from the equation
-replace sleeves with bias tape
-add fullness to back piece
-replace collar with long strip
-taper the hem line
I can’t wait to wear my new blouse absolutely everywhere!