As a teenager, I once bought a drab nude-coloured shirt from an op-shop and dyed it army green. I didn’t yet understand the challenges of dying polyester, so that dye always blotched and ran in the rain. But the shirt fit like a dream and I wore it anyway, blotches and all.
It was with that shirt in mind that I went hunting for a pattern … minus the running dye.
I wanted feminine, dartless, and relaxed and this Mila Shirt by Itch to Stitch fit the bill. I’m rather smitten! It’s a half-placket blouse with two collar options, back yoke, sleeve tabs, and relax fit.
My version is made with raspberry coloured cotton with silky properties, found at a local designer outlet for a bargain $6 per metre. It’s tricky to capture the colour just right, but think red with rich pink undertones.
One feature I’ve never seen in other patterns is the option to choose your bust size along with your clothing size. An attractive option if you often compromise over-all fit for bust fit in shirts. So most of us then. Savvy!
The only change I made was to lop 6cm off the length. In hindsight, it was perhaps ambitious and I’ll opt for a more conservative 3cm next time, if any.
I also french seamed throughout and attached the yokes in a different order, just because I’m more used to it that way. I’m sure the instructions work fine too though.
I consider this a big project for me. It’s got button holes, a collar, placket and cuffs … all fresh challenges or, in the case of button holes, techniques I need to practice more. I enjoyed that challenge though and I’ll definitely be making more Mila Shirts. Discovering I could not only do those techniques, but be happy with the end result has been a massive boost to my sewing confidence!
The Mila Shirt is a great pattern and the instructions are well written. I totally recommend this if you’re on the fence about it. Because of all the design elements, I’d have to class this pattern as advanced level. Certainly not advisable for beginner sewers and an intermediate sewer might pull it off, but you’ll want to be friends with your buttonholer first.
Also, take your time. This is the kind of make you want to savour and spend time doing each step really well. Bad stitching or careless placement will be obvious, so consider it a long-term make (this took me 2-3 weeks, doing just an hour or two a day) and enjoy the process of ‘making’ rather than rushing to finish.
I am so in love with this make! It feels so me and is structured yet casual. Perfect.