Paisley is most associated – and not always favourably – with the hippies of the 60s and 70s and, I’ll be honest, it’s not really a pattern I’m usually drawn to. However, there was something about this fabric – I just couldn’t leave the shop without it. I think it might be the touches of neon green. Because it’s such a bright print, it’s been in my stash since I bought it in December, but as we’ve had a few sunny spells I thought it was time to start some summer sewing.
I received the Colette Sewing Handbook for Christmas, and decided to give the Taffy blouse a go first. As it was somewhat similar in construction to the sorbetto I was quite comfortable with a lot of the techniques involved. I haven’t, however, ever sewn a sleeve before, despite having quite a few projects under my belt now. Thankfully sewing my first ever sleeves was a fairly pain-free process, so that’s something to check off my list and do more of in future.
Overall, I think this is a great little pattern, especially for a beginner. I only have a couple of gripes – firstly, the size of the sleeves. Now, I know the book says to use a light fabric, and I’ve used a heavier cotton, so this is probably my fault, but the sleeves really are huge! In fact, I’ve had to put a few stitches in at the sides to tame them. If the correct fabric was used though, I’m sure they would be lovely. My second – and final – gripe is the size of the neckline. I have narrow shoulders, so I altered the pattern slightly when I traced it to account for this, but the neckline is still quite wide and does slip down on occasion. Having checked out some of the other Taffys on the blogosphere, it seems this is a common problem, so keep it in mind if you decide to make a Taffy.
I think this top will get lots of wears during the summer – I’m planning on wearing it with a floaty, high-waisted skirt and sandals when (or if) it starts to really hot up.
If you fancy putting your own spin on this 1970s fabric, here are some pretty paisleys to get you started…