Sunday, March 30, 2008

Progress Report: BWOF 06-07 #129

One of the concerns I had with this blouse was (ominous chords: da-duunnn) The Sleeve Placket. It’s an important design feature of the blouse. It’s the feature that caught my attention. So I didn’t want to screw it up. I was curious about how the sparse BWOF instructions would handle the placket. After reading them several times and practicing on muslin, I decided to look elsewhere. So, I used the placket instructions in David Coffin’s Shirtmaking.

I first became concerned when I saw the pattern piece for the placket. How was I supposed to make a placket out of a rectangular pattern piece? No hint of folding lines; no sign of the triangle at the top of the placket. The resulting underlap of the placket is not bound; just folded under and stitched. And the triangle at the top is folded and shaped after the placket is sewn to the sleeve – not before. The BWOF method did not inspire confidence.

Coffin’s method starts with lots of folding and pressing and ends with a placket shape with which I am more familiar. Unlike the BWOF method, all of the hard stuff is done before the placket is sewn to the sleeve.

Then it is pinned and carefully sewn in using the old familiar "slash and leave a triangle at the top” method.

Coffin recommended using a glue stick to hold the triangle in place, but I used tape. I positioned the tape so I could sew the placket without repeatedly sewing through the tape and gumming up the needle. The edgestitch foot was invaluable at this step. I would never, ever try this without one. I'm not that good.

The result was a precisely sewn, placket. I've been re-taught the same old lesson: BWOF instructions (or any other instructions) are not delivered from a burning bush and etched on stone tablets. I can do whatever I want to achieve the best or desired results.


  1. Okay, so I looked at both pattern pieces and was still baffled - lol! I guess I'll cross the placket bridge when I get to it. Either way, your placket looks great! Good job mastering it your first go-around.

  2. Absolutey! You're the one sewing it, so you might as well sew it the way that works for you. Your placket it very nicely done!

  3. oooooooh, Gorgeous. Ok. I have this book and will have to try this next. Golly that looks good.

  4. Elaray,
    I’ve been enjoying your blog for almost a year – I’m sorry that I’ve done more lurking than commenting to let you that I’m part of your regular audience. In any event, I recently got an “Excellent Blog” award, and an obligation to pass it on to other excellent blogs. Your blog was one of the first that came to mind! If you would like to accept it, you can find it here:
    Take care,

  5. Elaray - your placket looks very nice. I do have Coffins book, although I have never tried this method. I have always done the rectangle thing. (always meaning once or twice :-))

  6. Coming out of lurkdom to introduce myself. Hi, long time fan, enjoy yr adventures. Oops, the name is Dina. Well done with yr placket,looks very professional.