I absolutely love African wax fabric for their bright colours and unusual prints, so I’ve used quite a lot of them before. This one is beautiful. I know wax fabric can have a reputation for being too stiff, but this one drapes naturally and is so soft against your skin. However, it still holds pleats / shape really well.
I wanted something which would showcase the vibrant print. I almost always make dresses, but recently I’ve realised I need more tops to go with the few pairs of Saguaro pants I’ve made. I settled on the Fibremood Oriana shirt. I was drawn to the dramatic sleeves and boxy shape. I also like to try and make sure anything I make is wearable year round, and I feel like this would work with an oversized jumper or cardigan when it starts to get chilly.
I’ve made a few shirts now, so this was a relatively easy sew; I completed it in just a few hours. I toiled the basic bodice to ensure that it fit before I cut into this fabric in case I needed to do a full bust adjustment. Happily it fit without any adjustments. I am dreadful at pattern matching and thought I’d cracked it….however, it turns out I managed to match the two plackets side by side instead of one over the other! Luckily, I don’t think the lack of matching makes a difference here.
The only change I made to the pattern was to only add buttons up to the bust. I never button shirts all the way to the collar, so additional buttons seemed superfluous. I will always be grateful for the perfect buttonholes my machine makes as this made the process much easier. I used fray stop before and after I tapped out the holes with a buttonhole chisel. I’ve found this really does stop buttonholes from fraying. I also read recently that you should position buttons roughly 1/8 inch / 3mm from the top of your buttonhole so it will settle into the right position. This seems to have been good advice as I naturally pull the shirt down which would make the buttons ride up.
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