I’m really on a French pattern company run at the moment! DP studio, I AM Patterns and now Orageuse!
My post today is on their Helsinki blouse.
This is a new-to-me company and I loved their designs and styling. Everything they make just looks so elegant! So of course I was eager to try them out. Kind of. I bought this pattern some time last year, printed and assembled it and then left it to flounder under my sewing table for months…
I’m glad I dug it out because I’m thrilled with the final result!
The Helsinki blouse is loose fitting with long sleeves and cuffs and twist in the front bodice pieces. The neckline has this really nice notch detail which looks so elegant. It’s very typical french chic in my opinion!
I made mine with a dark blue brushed cotton twill I bought from Fabworks Mill last year. I discovered this store for the first time at the Sewing Bee Live show last September. They had an amazing array of coat fabrics and whilst I didn’t buy anything from them on the day, I ended up trawling through their website and picking up a couple of pieces!
This fabric is just sheer delight. It’s a heavy but very soft brushed cotton – a great winter weight fabric. It would be perfect for anyone trying to replicate that brushed cotton plaid shirt feel!
This blouse is relatively simple to sew. The only real tricky section is the front twist but Orageuse have made a video specifically to tackle this! It involves twisting each of the front bodice pieces and overlaying them. I had to readjust mine quite a bit before I was sure I had it going in correctly!
I did alter my front pattern pieces slightly. I vaguely remember chatting to Rachel from The Foldline last year about it (she was wearing her version of it at the time) and I swear I remember her saying to try to reduce the bulk of the second twist as it’s not a visible design feature and adds bulk in an area you might not want to be bulky!
I may have dreamt that conversation though…
Either way I did reduce the volume of the folded twist on the hidden section of the wrap front. I’m not sure how much of a difference I really made though!
I also ignored the cuff instructions. Mostly because I couldn’t be bothered to read them… I used a different method to put them in and I think the result is pretty similar to what it would have been anyway. I did find they came out super duper tight though so check that beforehand guys! I’m not particularly bothered about this though since I’d have worn the blouse with the cuffs turned up anyway!
I added a little safety press stud to the front opening to make it a bit more wearable and stop it gaping open.
Did I tell you how much I love this fabric already? I could live very happily in a whole wardrobe made of the stuff! 😂
I love love love this blouse. I’ve been practically living in it since I made it. It’s so easy to wear but it has that magical quality where it still looks like you’ve put in effort! 😂
I love that notch detail on the back neck – it’s these little things that remind me why sewing my own clothes is awesome!