Desideratum Deer & Doe Datura Disaster

About halfway through making my Cotton Candy Culottes I realised that I didn’t have a top to wear with them! So I hatched a plan to make up something quick that would suit them but that could also fit in with my normal wardrobe.

I consulted with Fashionable Younger Sister who was in the middle of cutting out her own culottes. We talked about styles and colours and I mentioned I was thinking of trying mustard. I’ve never worn mustard before because I’m not sure if it suits my complexion. I thought maybe I could get away with it if I combined it with another colour like white or a lighter yellow or perhaps grey.

FYS sent me some awesome inspiration images:

And I realsied that I had the perfect pattern in my stash, Deer & Doe’s Datura:

Fast forward to a sneaky lunchtime fabric shop trip with my trusty accomplice, Nikki.

We went to The Fabric Store and I did a couple of laps looking for the perfect fabric. Unfortunately I didn’t find any mustard I liked, everything was too sunshine yellow, but I did spot a pretty lilac and white cotton with a homespun-like weave:

I thought it was nice enough and since it was not very expensive I grabbed some.

Annoyingly the yardage chart on the pattern envelope does not include separate fabric allowances for making this blouse in two tones. I found that a bit strange (and disappointing) given that all the examples on the pattern page are sewn in two colours. I grabbed a meter of each colour even though I knew it would be too much.

I chose to make the view A with the triangle cutouts and they were really easy to construct.

On the cutting layout the bias is laid out and cut in four lengths that you join which I guess saves some fabric but you end up with all those joins. It is neat that they give you a template that you can trace onto card and use to fold your bias.

Since I had extra fabric I was able to cut my bias as one long length. I own 3 different sized Clover bias tape makers that I use to make bias tape. They aren’t that expensive and once you get the hang of them are worth owning.

There didn’t seem to be any mention of joining the bias tape ends together in the instructions. I joined mine at the centre back, unfolding to stitch the ends together, before trimming and refolding…

…like so…


And then my Datura was almost finished. Except that it wasn’t, ahhh, unfortunately my fabric was too stiff for this pattern. I tried to save it with some extra darts but it just didn’t work.

The bust darts are also too high on me so the fabric tents out from my ladies and is quite unflattering over the tum.

All is not lost however because even though this fabric was the wrong choice I do think this pattern has potential. You don’t need a lot of fabric (hello silk off-cuts in my stash!) and it’s a pretty quick make so there will be another version soon.


Pattern – Deer & Doe Datura, size 42, version A

Next time I will use a more lightweight drapey fabric, lower the bust darts and probably sew the buttons straight on (no button holes as they are purely decorative)

Fabric – 100% Cotton from The Fabric Warehouse, $8.00/m, Feb 2014

Other notions – 3 x buttons from stash

This photo is of me testing to see if I could reach the buttons. I took in the side seams a little to see if I could improve the fit. I wanted to make sure I could get the top on and off in case my alterations meant the buttons actually had to function.

18 thoughts on “Desideratum Deer & Doe Datura Disaster

  1. It’s nice to feel like there’s hope for the next version of a pattern. This one looks pretty great in photos! Given the state of what RTW looks like on most of us, no one but a fellow seamstress would even know about the odd darts. I like the color combos. And I can see your point about using some light silks for this pattern. It’d be lovely in a fluttery, light fabric. Perfect summer chic. How did you like sewing the Deer & Doe Patterns? Do her patterns tend toward the hourglass / curvier side like she’s built? or are they more general/block shaped to allow adjusting to your own body?

  2. I love these colors on you. I can’t wait to see your other versions. I’ll be on the look out for it to see how you altered it! 🙂

    For my Datura, the bust darts were too high as well. Ahh, the tenting! I think that’s why I haven’t made another Datura. I took it in at the side seams a bit, but the tenting is still there! I was thinking of adding waist darts to make it more fitted. May be, that will work!

  3. You win some, you lose some 🙂 Fwiw, it looks fine in pics – but the proff is in the wearing isn’t it, and all the “it looks fine” comments in the world won’t change that! Hope you find a use for the fabric, and looking forward to seeing the next version!

  4. Oh Pooh (with capitals), but the top has promise for sure. Are you going to try again with a floppsier fabric? I love the cut outs and the idea of the buttons down the back (providing you don’t need a maid to help you dress!) and the two colours.

    PS agree emphatically about the bias maker Clovers. I love mine and I could do with more ….. 🙂

  5. The darts are also too high on me. I just try to ignore it because I really love my datura top. I should make another one sometime… And you should too!

  6. I love the pink top bit… can you save that and add some drapey fabric for the lower half? I’ll even get bossy – in a soft dove grey. yeah. that’d look awesome!

  7. I made a muslin for this a couple of weeks ago, and I hated the fit so much that I lost my sewing mojo! The bust darts were at the right height for me (surprisingly, I usually have to lower them) and the fit on the upper half was actually not too bad. My issue is with the billow-ey-ness of the bottom half- I found it incredibly unflattering.. it could even work as a maternity top if I were pregnant! I couldn’t think of how to fix it without just taking in the side seams, which would make it difficult to take on and off. Hope you have more luck, I’ll be watching with interest 🙂

  8. Does it look alright tucked in to a skirt? That might save the waist issue… from the photos it doesn’t look too big (Although there’s no side on shot!) and the colours look lovely. The darts ARE crazy high though, what a pain

  9. Too bad the fabric didn’t work out… I kind of like the darts sitting so high on the upper part of your torso, but I can imagine the lower part doesn’t look stellar like that… Good luck with the alterations, it is quite a nice pattern.

  10. Bugger about those darts!!! Otherwise, its certainly got potential. This is my fav from their range and the one I’d most likely sew… were it not for the gigantasaurus to-sew queue in front of it. The length of binding worked out perfectly though – love that! You’ll be making another, yes? I reckong it could be a winner 🙂

  11. Too bad about the fabric not being right, the colours are really pretty on you. Glad to hear you are going to try it again. I am so jealous you got to go to the Fabric Store ! They need to open a location in Canada…

  12. Shame it didn’t work out, that pattern is seriously cute and the fabric was lovely. It would be so nice if this version could be rescued, cos the colours look great on you. I’ve got a bias binding maker and it just doesn’t come out as good as yours!

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