Saturday, May 12, 2018

Cézembre à deux

Vs 1.0 cotton chambray
I needed to make it twice and now I have. I like the first one best, but I will definitely wear the white one. I'm always reaching for a white top and hoping I haven't spilled tomato sauce on it yet.

Vs 2 in light weight cotton pique
I first spotted this pattern while reading one of my favorite blogs - Camp Runamuck. She frequently highlights tops I would have never noticed otherwise. The Cézembre blouse is my latest. And I really like it. A lot.

Why? Because it fits through the shoulders and neckline (with a few tweaks). Because it has set-in sleeves. Because it has princess seams in the front and no side seams. Because it skims the rest of my torso. Because the name just rolls off the tongue. Try it.

I've already washed and worn the first one several times. It is so soft and I feel good in it.

The first one was made from men's shirts purchased at the thrift store. The fabric is chambray and is very soft.

Like denim it creates interesting fade and resist lines that are fun to incorporate. I am pretty sure these shirts were brand new and so the fabric did not soften or fade through use. The result is still like an old work shirt, but better.

When I picked off the chest pocket, the unfaded (resist) portion was obvious. So I decided to embrace it, flipping the pattern piece to create half of the front. I used the actual pocket as a mirror for the resist portion.

By carefully unstitching the fronts of one shirt, I was able to sew them together to produce the final front piece of my fabric. The resist dyes create pretty stripes, I think.

While I love wearing the chambray one, the neckline is a bit wide for my personal taste, so I changed that on the second one. This of course is my current go-to neckline, borrowed from the Egyptian shirt (folkwear patterns).

I am especially fond of the sleeves on the Cézembre. I think they are the perfect length even for hot weather. I am vain enough to avoid showing my upper arms unless the heat absolutely demands it.

I added a pocket to the second one in the same location as the first. It just did not work and so I removed it. And used the pocket to create the back patch.

Now I'm wondering. Would inseam pockets work with these princess seams, especially if I lengthen it to tunic length? Also it makes me itch to try something new with my old TnT - the MixIt top from the Sewing workshop. Might it be possible to move the side seams to the front of that and then incorporate the bust darts into the princess seam?

The princess seams as drafted on the Cézembre does not fully replace a bust dart. That is the only down side to this pattern, as I see it.

And, oh my goodness, I see another new-to-me pattern up over at Camp Runamuck. She should get royalties from my pattern purchases. Would you just look how cute the Teddy Tunic is? I wonder if I can order it stateside. And the pictured pants remind me of the Hudson pants from the Sewing Workshop. So casual and put-together.


  1. You can get Style Arc patterns from Amazon. I order the Teddy Tunic as I love it. I so enjoy your blog and personal aesthetic!

  2. Martha, I think your chambray one is perfect. I might have to copy that! I want you to know Anne Kerdiles has a new pattern winging its way to me, the Syracuse. V neck and pretty button back! I'm hoping the fit is as nice as the Cezembre. I love the neckline on the Teddy, no, I ADORE the neckline, and I'm very happy with the set in sleeve I frankenpatterned to it.

  3. You can get the Teddy Tunic pattern from Amazon. I just ordered it but haven't made it yet.

  4. If a particular StyleArc (e.g., the Teddy) pattern isn't available through Amazon, then you can order it through Etsy. The downside is that the Etsy versions are downloads and need to be printed and taped together. Some are available in the print-shop version. If not, you can e-mail StyleArc requesting a print-shop version in your desired size range. They are very quick to set it up for you to purchase through Etsy. After I get my hands on the print-shop version, I e-mail it in Richmond, VA, for printing. I get quick delivery at an extremely reasonable price.

  5. Beautiful top. I'd not heard of the company before. Love your versions

  6. You are such an enabler, Martha! Since I love your style, I love most everything you make. I will have to get this pattern. Love your tops!