A Love Letter to Women

One of my weekend rituals, especially during the pandemic, is to turn on the radio and listen while I sew. It's often after I've made a big breakfast and clean up, when my partner usually takes his weekend bike ride, so I have this marvelous time to myself to create, listen, and think. Often I listen to news and politics and catch up on the week, and it is this mixture of serious world news and fun, creative sewing that fills my time.

This is the context in which I made this shirt. It's soft and pink and pretty. But I also like to think it's interwoven with stories of women I've heard on the radio, from journalists who were at the capital during the insurrection to prehistoric biologists and activists whose voices fill the air as I sew. It makes me think of Rosie the Riveter, and the many women who went to work in the Bay Area during a time of crisis. They were often mothers and women of color finding work again after the Great Depression. When I wear this shirt, I feel pretty, but I also feel strong with the stories of powerful women I heard while making it. This Valentine's Day, I'm celebrating these amazing women and their stories. 

Pattern: McCalls Misses' Dresses #7920 as a top
Fabric: 1 yd cotton poplin (Mood's Le Femmes en PoisPink)
Cost: $12 

This fabric was an impulse buy from Mood. I threw a yard in my cart as I was ordering some other fabric because I couldn't resist the lovely print. However, like most online orders I've made during the pandemic, it wasn't exactly what I expected when it arrived. I'm used to being able to touch the fabric and now I have to learn how to properly read the description. It's quite stiff and looks like it might wrinkle a bit as well.  

It sat in my stash for a few months until I could figure out what to do with it. But eventually it told me it wanted to be this shirt.

Recently I have been rediscovering the joy of button-up shirts. They offer all the ease of sewing with cotton but are easier to put on than a pull-over blouse. Add things like buttons, yokes, back pleats, and darts and you get a bit more movement than a regular woven t-shirt. This particular one is a McCall's dress pattern. I shortened it to a shirt length using the Kalle Shirtdress hemline. I also converted the back darts into fisheye darts. It gives a nice fit without being snug. And I love the simple V neckline. 

I had originally reserved some fabric for a sleeve flounce. However, after trying it in various configurations I finally had to admit that it just wasn't working. The fabric is quite stiff and that flounce stood nearly straight out from the sleeve. It was just too much! But this shirt is plenty sweet as is. 

And luckily I had the perfect vintage buttons in my stash to match.  

I hope you are enjoying your weekend. I will probably be sewing and listening to the radio. 

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