Have a Powerful Pretty Girl Peplum Party in McCalls 7356

African America Woman stands at Fountain at Forsyth Park in Savannah in purple Ankara Patter McCalls-7356 and white jeans

It’s Black History Month, and it’s dark and cold, so I’m going to brighten it up and have an entire peplum party at home in McCalls 7356. February is the shortest and often one of the coldest months. I struggle with keeping my sewing motivation and frequency high in the winter. Seasonal affective disorder is real. Shorter days, less daylight. In this week’s post, I explore how you can stay focused on the task at hand, despite bluesy weather and overcasts. For more, read my post on seasonal affective disorder and creativity.

Pattern Features of McCalls 7356

McCalls 7356 is a single blouse done 6 or 7 ways. There are four views, but this sewing pattern can create more than four unique looks.

  • Four views of a single blouse
  • Cap sleeves or Short sleeves
  • A super girly tie
  • Peplum: 2 options for length and style

Fabric Options for Peplum McCalls 7356

  • Medium weight cotton
  • Heavyweight Ponte
  • Ankara
  • Denim
  • Linen
  • Poplin
  • Specifically for the peplum/godets:lace, eyelet
  • For dresser tops: Satin, Taffeta, Silks, Dupioni

I chose this purple Ankara from Vlisco fabrics. It was leftover from a project I did with my daughter; you might recognize it here (pattern Simplicity 1290).

I choose leftover Ankara from a previous project

Skills Needed

  • Invisible skills
  • Narrow hem–there is a lot of hemming here
  • Sleeve insertion
  • Ability to sew garment facing
  • Skills enhanced: add horsehair braid (see below)

Petite Adjustments and Suggestions for McCalls 7356

I did not make any petite adjustments this time but next time I will reduce the front and back bodice by 1 inch for a more precise fit. The length was perfect for me. For reference I’m 4’11”, 150lbs, bust 34 inches, waist 20 inches and 32DD.

Hacks for peplums and other features

There is a lot of hemming to do here, and sometimes hems like these can get boring, flat, and difficult, but here is my hack for ensuring that the godets and peplums on McCalls 7356 are nothing short of stellar. By all means, use horsehair braid to make everything about his hem stand out. The horsehair braid adds volume. Depending on the stiffness of the braid, I can almost guarantee that the use of this sewing tool will elevate any project of its kind. If you’ve never used horsehair braid, check out my step-by-step 3 minutes tutorial–you won’t regret it.

I’ve also used horsehair braid patterns: McCalls 7684; it’s a formal dress, but this is another place you can make a splash.

Another tip when sewing this pattern is to finish every single piece of the godet BEFORE you put it together. It’s challenging, though not impossible, to finish the godets after the fact. Getting into the corner is like sewing gymnastics. Just don’t do it; finish those edges after you cut the pieces.

1 Comment
  • Makeela Waldon

    I am TOTALLY IN LOVE WITH YOUR CONCEPT♥️👍🏾💯 I (70yrs young) am sending this info as a challenge to my beautiful and vibrant 76yrs young, sister, Esther. I see this as a “fun Sisters challenge ” in keeping out Godly talents, time and hearts flowing.🙂 We want to keep learning, exploring and blessing others in the process! We both sew, so this will be great fun.😁

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