So this is my Meissa, made up in some gorgeous silk crepe de chine that I purchased from Tessuti Fabrics way back in 2012. In fact, I think this may have been my first ever purchase of silk and the very start of my Tessuti addiction. If I remember rightly, I had a dress in mind to sew for the Tessuti Awards that year (spots and stripes). Having never sewn an actual dress before, I was both over ambitious and clueless. I ended up having a lot of this lovely fabric left over.
The Meissa is a clever pattern, with some unique and beautiful features. But I have to admit upfront, that I’ve always had reservations about this pattern and I’m not quite sure how it ended up in my cart. I do know that I was having a lot of trouble finding the ‘perfect’ shirt pattern at the time. I also suspect that I got carried away at the checkout after I happened across the fabulous Rigel bomber and the Rite of Spring shorts.
But this shirt turned out to be a wonderful surprise. I nearly didn’t finish it, because I tried it on half finished and had awful visions of puffy bust gathers and a too ‘Western’ look. I think my silly mind was playing tricks on me. However, I would like to talk about a few things that I learnt from sewing this pattern.
I cut this shirt in a size 12 and I made two simple adjustments. I added 2cm to the arm length (because I am rather long of limb). I also skipped the double button feature down the front placket. I know this is a distinguishing feature of the shirt and many people love it, but it just wasn’t me. Each time I looked at the pattern photo, my eyes just wanted to separate those buttons into a more conventional spacing. Call me boring. I don’t mind.
The sizing feels good to me, in that it is comfortable on. But I can see from the drag lines in the photo that it is a bit tight across my upper chest when all the buttons are done up. It’s a lot better when I undo the top two buttons. I often have trouble sizing fitted tops or shirts off the rack due to my broad back.
The collar and wrist cuffs are gorgeous, but the cuffs are quite narrow. They fit me like a glove, but wider wrists could have trouble. I would also suggest sticking to light and slinky fabrics to prevent those bust gathers from taking on a life of their own. Crepe de chine worked beautifully, although it obviously increases the difficulty rating.
I’m quite happy with my new shirt. Obviously there a few fit issues but I can still see it becoming a real workday staple for me.