Does anyone else think that there’s something extra special about a beautifully tailored shirt? And with so many shirt patterns available it can be sometimes tricky to choose the right one for you. Which is why we decided to review yet another shirt style hoping that it might help you make your choice.
Today’s pattern is the Mélilot shirt from the French indie pattern company Deer and Doe. Their effortless style is definitively a firm favorite of ours and their beautifully crafted patterns are very popular within the sewing community. The Mélilot pattern offers two different views: version A with long sleeves and rounded collar and version B with short cuffed sleeves and mandarin collar. Both versions have dropped shoulders, curved high-low hemline and lined pockets, which makes it easier to get identical curves on both pockets. The inside of the Mélilot has a very neat finish, with French seams throughout.
What sets Mélilot aside from the majority of shirt patterns out there, is that it has a more fitted silhouette at the waist and additional dart shaping around the bust area, which gives it a more feminine, almost blouse-like look. It’s worth noting that Deer and Doe draft for a C/D cup so you might need to make a muslin first to check the fit and make the necessary adjustments. Contrary to a more traditional shirt, Mélilot doesn’t have a back yoke which speeds things up.
With the two versions of the pattern you can achieve two different views. You can also mix and match the elements to create something unique. While we love both views, we decided to make the long sleeve option with rounded collar (Version A). It is a relatively quick sew and could be handled even by a beginner since the instructions and illustrations are pretty clear and concise. One small word of caution: make sure to transfer all the hidden placket markings from the pattern onto your fabric, otherwise it might take you some head scrathing before you figure out on which lines to fold. The inside of the shirt is finished with French seams and looks neat and clean. The only tricky part of the construction was the hem. It has quite a dramatic curve and the pressing is a bit of a challenge. What we did to achieve a cleaner curve is to run a line of stitching ¼” from the edge and then using this line as a guide for turning the hem. You can find all the steps in this tutorial.
In different fabrics, the shirt will have different looks. We, of course, used linen for our version. With so many colors available, we went for simplicity and picked our medium-weight milky TADELAKT Softened linen. And we are quite pleased with how it turned out! The fit is great with no alterations whatsoever. We made a straight size 40 based on our model’s measurements.
The Mélilot pattern exists in paper and PDF formats and is available for purchase at the Deer and Doe website. For more inspiration, please check all the beautiful makes on Instagram with the #ddmelilot hashtag.