I've finally made something that I like without reservation. It's a very simple blouse based on McCall's 8050 pattern. The fabric is not of high quality, doesn't drape well. But it's cotton, comfortable to wear in hot weather, and I'm pleased enough with the overall result to give myself at least a B+ and clearance to move on to nicer fabrics.
I'm sure I'll probably look back at this garment later and think, "How crude." But for now, I'm pleased with my work. The facing, which I made wider than the pattern, stays flat, the seams are nicely finished, and the style looks good on me.
After seeing this wonderful tutorial on Carolyn's blog I decided to use French seams on the shoulders. I went with open seams at the sides, because I didn't think a French seam would work well on the under-arm curves of the kimono sleeves. Here's something interesting: according to a comment on Carolyn's blog, the thing we call a French seam in English is known as an English seam in France!
Anyhow, with the help of Carolyn's very clear instructions and photos, I easily made French seams.
Where the seams meet, I've pressed one to the front and one to the back to avoid undue bulk.
So now ... how exciting! ... I'm going to make this same blouse in black silk crepe.