I made my first version of the Deer and Doe Bruyere at the end of last year, after – no joke – spending six months searching for the right fabric. Turns out it was totally worth the wait, as the pattern fitted me straight off the bat and I absolutely loved it ?
It solved a lot of the fit problems I have with other shirts I’ve sewn:
- Boob drag lines – this one has bust darts (unlike my Vogue/DKNY V1462) so fits better round the chest
- Massive armscye – the Bruyere is actually drafted for normal sized armpits, unlike what seems like 95% of other sewing patterns ??♀️ (RDC Jolaine, I’m looking at you)
- Bin-liner chic – because of the waistband and hourglass shape of the Bruyere, I can have a shirt that fits my hips AND my waist rather than cutting a size based on my hips and then having four hundred inches of ease around my waist ??♀️
The panelled design of this shirt is both its saviour and it’s downfall – for me, anyway. I get an amazing fit, but I have to pass up on most prints because each separate element of the shirt isn’t that big, and/or has darts running through it, so anything too large-scale is just going to look crap and choppy. Choose a print that’s too busy and the nice construction lines that you’re going to spend so long crafting are just going to be lost in the chaos. Which is why it took me six months to find fabric for the last one ??♀️
The natural progression from a long-sleeved shirt that I loved so much was obvs to make the sleeveless version, and thankfully it didn’t take me as long to find fabric for this one.
**there may, just MAY, be a matchy-matchy photoshoot in our future ??**
It’s a beautifully lightweight cotton, perfect for summer, and the pattern is just enough to hold my interest but not too busy that it can’t handle being chopped into for the Bruyere. Win.
The one thing I really love about the Bruyere (and indeed, most of Deer and Doe’s patterns) is the beautiful finish on the inside. Everything is French seamed or enclosed under the yoke – there isn’t a raw edge in sight. This sort of thing makes me insanely happy. Other pattern brands could definitely learn something from their attention to these sorts of details. Their instruction booklets are also easy on the eye and easy to follow – yes, I’ll admit I’m a total fan girl. I’m not ashamed.
I’m pretty proud of the fact that I’ve really got the hang of the fork pins now, they helped me get the waistband seams matched up at the side of the shirt LIKE AN ABSOLUTE BOSS ??????
Before I discovered the wonder that is high-waisted mom jeans – I’m not even kidding when I say I now have three pairs all the same and I literally wear them to work everyday (not all three pairs at once, obvs) – I used to wear my shirts tucked in ALL OF THE TIME – NO EXCEPTIONS – because leaving them untucked automatically made me look like I was wearing a sack.
The tunic length of the Bruyere means you *can’t* tuck it in (unless you really want to have all of that fabric inside your trousers ??) but the fitted waistband gives the shirt a nice shape so I can wear it over jeans and not look like I’ve gained 30 pounds. I would happily wear this with comfy leggings – in fact, I think I may well dig out the leggings and do just that – and I’m also having the debate in my mind whether it would go with a skirt. I’m leaning towards no, but keep thinking that you could work a boho/hippy vibe with a midi or maxi length skirt and a wide belt around the waist ?
If you’ve not used Deer and Doe patterns before, they are drafted for hourglass/pear shapes and a C cup – which is pretty much my exact shape, and why their patterns fit me so well – but that’s not to say that you can’t make some adjustments to adapt to your shape. The waistband could be extended and the waist darts removed to give some extra room at the waist if needed, and the bust darts could be drafted out for a smaller chest. Simples.
The armscye is finished with bias tape – as instructed – and I also used this method on the hem, as per usual. I use half-inch/13mm bias tape for all my hems, but it’s *really* hard to find (I get mine from Plush Addict) – the most common width seems to be 1 inch/25mm which is too wide for hems really (and defo too wide for an armhole). It’s a shame that all the cool prints and designs of bias tape come in 1 inch wide tape rather than half-inch… I guess I *could* if I really felt like it trim 1 inch tape down to the size I wanted, but it just seems like an almighty faff and I really can’t be bothered.
I do have one of those bias tape makers for half-inch tape, and strangely enough I don’t really mind the thought of making my own tape, but I absolutely need to get some sort of template for cutting it because currently I just sort of eyeball it with a ruler on the cutting mat… and you can guess how that turns out. Wibbly AF. I’ve read several articles on how to make continuous bias tape, which seems like my saviour, and I’ve got the perfect project coming up which I could use it on – so I’ve mentally committed to the task. I’m not going to go as far as to say I’m not going to buy ready-made bias anymore, because I really don’t see the need to make my own plain black tape when I can buy perfectly good stuff online and spend that time sewing something pretty instead. I made that commitment with piping (which I actually make 100% of now) but let’s not go too cray cray *just* yet.
I really love my shirt, and the Bruyere has now officially been awarded a place in my list of patterns that are going to form the basis of my wardrobe. It’s nice enough to wear for work, but not so formal that I wouldn’t want to wear it at the weekend.
I’m slowly seeing more and more handmade items in my wardrobe that are getting worn on a regular basis, which is pretty exciting ? I’m getting better at choosing fabrics and patterns that suit my tastes and style, and the ‘meh’ projects are getting fewer and fewer.
This shirt was a Minerva Crafts Blogger Network make so you can head on over to the post on their blog here to read more. I’ve just chosen my Blogger Network projects for Sept/Oct/Nov and I’m so excited to finally be able to sew autumn/winter stuff again! I’ve chosen some wool, some linen and some dinosaur poplin. Yep, DINOSAUR POPLIN. ??? The husbeast is absolutely going to have the coolest shirt on the planet. Both the wool and the linen are for me, and I’ll be making indie patterns from designers that I’ve never sewn before (but have been eyeballing for a while ?). You’ll have to wait to see what these fabrics become ??♀️
And now, an apology for my shocking organisational skillz
To all my email subscribers, I wanted to apologise for the accidental post you received in your inboxes yesterday ??♀️ A few months back, I had the bright idea of scheduling posts for the date they were due to go live, so that when I logged on to WordPress I could see the posts that were coming up and therefore what I needed to work on. Inevitably, things change – and schedules change – and the posts get moved around in my diary (yep, I also keep track in a diary) but I obvs forgot to change the scheduled publish date on this particular post on WordPress. I mean, I’d even got totally the wrong DAY for that post, as it went live on a Saturday rather than the regular-schmegular Sunday. A royal balls-up.
I knew it was bound to happen one day, and I’m amazed I held out for this long to be honest. So yeah, soz about that, ignore the email and let’s just casually pretend nothing happened ??
Coming up next week on the Wanderstitch blog… the Safrans post that some of you got the sneak peek of already ??? Yep, I’m finally making trousers!! Subscribe below to make sure you don’t miss out!