If the McCalls 7969 was the it dress of 2021 then the Anthea Blouse was the it blouse. There’s definitely been a few moments in the past few months where they were all I saw on my social media feeds!
The Anthea Blouse is a relatively recent release from Anna Allen (maker of the famous Persephone pants). It’s a dartless and collarless button front shirt with exaggerated 3/4 length puff sleeves. The neck and sleeve hem is finished with a skinny bias binding. There’s also a dress version though to be honest, I’ve not seen many of those around yet.
I can see why it’s been so popular. It’s a simple shape which usually means easy to sew and fit! The puffed sleeve is still on trend and the unfussy bodice and neckline means this’ll be a great layering piece too (imagine it under a knitted slipover!).
I decided to use a soft flowy fabric for this blouse and used a burnt orange rayon Art Gallery print that I purchased from Like Sew Amazing in the Black Friday sale last November. I’d been eyeing up this print for a while now so it was nice to get it with a little bit off!
I made a size 12 with no alterations. It was as straightforward to sew as expected though I’ll always be annoyed at patterns that have different seam allowances throughout a pattern piece (the bias bound edges use a narrower allowance than the side seams). This is totally a personal preference and mostly because I tend not to read the instructions super thoroughly so if there’s lots of variations I’m more likely to get it wrong! I found the bias binding to be a little narrow to work with so in future I’ll make this pattern pieces a little wider to suit my preference. I used some tiny shanked black buttons from the stash to close.
The pattern matching down the centre front was a complete and utter fluke. I didn’t even think about trying to match it and just magically happened! Crazy how that happens sometimes!
I’d really like to make this again in a firmer fabric to get a blouse with more body on that life sleeve. As comfortable and swishy this rayon is, I don’t think it plays into that puff enough!