Bonjour. Au jour d’hui je vais avec vous voyager en France! Je viens de la Suède, et vous?
Hello! Today I will take you on a trip to France! I come from Sweden, how about you?
I really like France, the beautiful nature, the great food, the wine, the cheeses… I could go on. Also from France comes on of my favourite patterns, and it’s one I’ve now sewed up for its fifth iteration in my wardrobe, Deer and Doe’s Mélilot Shirt. They’re just so fun to make and so easy to wear!
For this version I did the view B as presented (a first for me!) with short sleeves, mandarin collar and exposed buttons. I just wanted a casual shirt to go with this fabric. I love the sturdy paper the pattern is printed on, as I always trace my pieces. As for the instructions, they come in both French and English and I use both. There are some things that are lost in translation, the English translation can say “topstitch close to the edge” whereas the French instructions gives a measurement. Also, the French instructions use SI/metric units and the English ones use solely imperial measurements. When I’m using a pattern that was drafted in SI-units it would be nice to have that reflected in the instructions. This is also reflected in the web shop, the French version shows requirements in SI-units and the English one in imperial, I find myself flipping back and forth to get everything right.
Instructions issues aside, which aren’t so much issues as annoyances, I really like this pattern! It might help that I really enjoy shirt-making and sewing all the details. I don’t even mind all the button and buttonholes, even less so now after I was taught how to make automatic buttonholes on my machine. I’ve had it for 11 years, so it was about time I learnt that feature. The instructions suggest you to sew all seams with French seams and they add such a nice touch to the shirt. The instructions also have you hemming each piece separately before sewing the side seam, due to the curve, but I sewed the side seam first and then hemmed with bias tape. I added a bit of length above the dart, to accommodate my long torso, and made an FBA.
The fabric is a nice stripy cotton, perfect for shirt making. It’s from the remnant bin at Stoff & Stil, so it was quite a find. In fact, I thought I picked up 1.5 metres, when I came home as it turned out I had inadvertently picked up three pieces of the fabric, without reacting to the final cost since they were fairly cheap, so I still have 3 more metres to play with. I’m thinking the fabric would make a good maxi dress for summer. In order to avoid stripe matching the collar and pockets were cut on the cross grain, the sleeves are cut as meant which turned the stripes the other way. I like those touches as well as not have to stripe match.
The things I love about shirts and shirt making is that I get to work with a lot of details, but depending on styling, fabric choices and add-on-choices it can vary from a business garment to, as in this case, quite a casual garment. This particular shirt can take me from work to city strolling to walks in nature. It works on its own and layered underneath cardigans and blazers. And like the other Mélilots that live in my wardrobe, this will be a go-to garment in my wardrobe.