The Albion Blouse is a collaboration between Vanessa Hansen Studios and Peppermint Magazine. Peppermint Magazine is not only great for their articles but also for their free sewing patterns. I was thrilled to be part of the tester team and so happy to be able to share it. When I started applying to be a tester for patterns, I didn’t realise there could be a gap between sewing and posting. Sometimes there’s no indication of when a pattern will be released which makes it so exciting when you can finally share! I was born in the Chinese year of the dragon and dragons are usually terrible at keeping secrets so I’m patting myself on the back for not letting anything out of the bag so far.
The Albion Blouse is a wrap top which is fastened by buttons and loops. It is quite fitted in the bodice and stops just below the natural waistline. There were a lot of firsts for me in this pattern. I’ve never had to make loops for fastening and it was also my first time making my own buttons. I consider my skill level sitting more towards the advanced beginner so I was happy to be able to complete this pattern which is made for intermediate sewers.
The size for the Albion Blouse runs between A to P and has cup sizes. I graded between size F and G as my full bust sat in the F range and my waist was in the G. I love the system on sizing and how Vanessa includes detailed fitting notes in her patterns. The wrap top allows for some flexibility too which helped me as I’m still learning in this area.
There are two versions to make in this pattern and my first make was a wearable toile of the short sleeve blouse. My final version was of the long sleeves with cuff which also fastens with buttons and loops.
This blouse has such classic vintage features, so I chose a beautiful lightweight linen with a modern print to juxtapose this. I always reach for a linen if I can because it’s a natural fibre and great in hot weather and cooler weather too.
The Albion Blouse is such a generous offering from Vanessa Hansen Studios. Thank you to both Peppermint Magazine and Vanessa for making this pattern free for all of us.
Thanks for reading and happy sewing!
So pretty! Love the buttons!
Thank you! I loved making the buttons. Now looking for any excuse to make them again (ha ha).
I want to make this top but I would like to give the back more room and thinking of cutting the pattern larger in the back so it can be gathered at the waist, a blouson effect. Will this work
Hi Vicki! That sounds like an interesting idea! The only barriers I can think of is the fit of the wrap in the front depending on how much you increase the back panel by. Also, the hem was finished with biased binding so I wonder if you could add a panel so that you could fit the gathering at the waist or maybe use elastic? Lastly, you might need to consider a drapier, lighter weight fabric to achieve that blouson effect rather than the stiffer fabrics that were recommended. I hope you give it a go! It sounds great and maybe contact Vanessa Hansen as well as she would be a great resource! Good luck and I hope you enjoy your sew x Em