Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Yard Sale Inspiration

A friend of mine introduced me to the joys of estate sales, and ever since, I've been having a lot of fun finding clothes to inspire me. In the last few weeks, I bought two shirts that I have no hope of fitting into, but which have given me a lot of inspiration!

Embroidered Blouse
This is just a store-bought long-sleeve blouse, but someone took the time to hand-embroider it with the names of its parts... in French.

Button placket and pocket, identified.

The right sleeve. I think it says "grain of fabric on the length". (Someone who actually knows French can correct me -- even Babelfish wasn't much help)

The Collar.

I know this is a yoke. Is that what the French says? "L'emplacement du dos"

The Cuff (I assume)

"Swiss Dot" Blouse
At a different sale, I stumbled across this absolutely gorgeous blouse. Again, it will never fit me, but the construction details were just amazing.

The fabric is very sheer, with printed dots. So it's not true Swiss Dot, but it's still very supple. It's in amazing shape; just missing one or two buttons. All the seams are French seams, and the facing is cut-on. The raw edge of the facings are just turned under 1/4" and edgestitched, and there's no evidence of any fraying at all.

Here I've opened up one side of the shawl collar to show the construction detail. The edge of the neck is on the fold of the fabric, so there is no seam bulk at the edge. This really adds to the visual lightness of the blouse.

The only darts are the waist darts, and they're not very wide. The front panel is gathered slightly at the shoulder seam, giving a bit of fullness to the front.


  1. Found your site by googling how to adhere paper to plastic - your Obama tote came up. I enjoy your posts and sewing adventures. I buy second hand clothing too, for inspiration - the sheer blouse is particularly pretty.

  2. Welmoed -
    This one looks like it will be claimed, in some form, by your daughter. I can see her wearing it over formal "pajamas" for a college affair.
    Sue in MN (who brings estate sale finds to her 26yo daughter quite often)


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