So, let's say I have a blouse I want to alter to fit me, like this one. Hmmm, seems I did not pick a good one to work on since it is white and my bed quilt is also white. Sorry about that.
So this blouse is BIG (large size Mossimo brand), but I liked the neckline details and it cost only, would you believe, the equivalent of 25 cents.
1. I start out by turning it inside out and folding it down the center, pinning the sides to make sure it doesn't move.
2. I lay it out and put the cardboard pattern on top of it, tracing out the pattern with tailors chalk or something else that will wash out.
3. If you want to check out your pattern before you cut the cloth, you can pin the sides and try out the pinned blouse. Careful you don't get pricked!
4. If you are confident about your pattern, just cut out the extra cloth, leaving an allowance of approximately 1.5 cm (5/8 inch). I used to leave a bigger allowance, when I was afraid of making my blouse too tight, but I always ended up with a loose blouse. So, if you are confident about your pattern, you can just leave the 1.5 cm.
5. Lay the sleeve pattern on the cutout sleeves (pinned together), mark and cut out both the sleeves as well.
6. I start to prepare to sew the sleeve to bodice seam (this is not the expert way, I know, but I think it is the much easier way). First, I position the cloth pieces so that I won't get confused about which side to sew.
7. Then, I turn the sleeve piece to make right sides face each other.
8. I start pinning the sleeve at the middle fold of the sleeve, making it meet the top seam of the blouse, and continue pinning down both sides.
9. After pinning, you are ready to sew the pieces together. Remember, and sew 1.5 cm away from the edge of the cloth (on the wrong side). Actually this can be the most challenging part because it requires sewing curved seams but I do it very slowly. Those lines on the sewing machine will help you sew the seams evenly.
10. With the sleeves sewn on, do a zigzag stitch around to keep the cloth from unraveling.
11. So sorry, but by this time, I forgot to take pictures (too excited to finish the blouse). But with the blouse turned inside out, pin the sides, sew the side seams, and again do the zigzag stitch.
12. Then I do the hem of the sleeve (usually, I cut long sleeves to short sleeves). And viola! The blouse is finished and I dumped it into the laundry bin and forgot to take a picture!
So there, if you ever buy a 25 cent blouse in the wrong size, you can try altering it. If it doesn't turn out well, who cares, maybe the next try will be better. If it turns out well but there are a few crooked seams, I assure you, twinkling eyes and a lovely smile will easily camouflage the crookedest of seams. Next tutorial... how to have twinkling eyes and a lovely smile. Just kidding, I'm sure you all know how to do that!