Friday, July 14, 2006

Slowly Unslumping

I'm sporadically working on a pattern from the July 2006 issue of Burda WOF. I love the lines in this blouse but to get it to fit me will take some alteration and probably a test in fabric.

(No, that's not me.)

I traced the pattern on Wednesday night after watching the season premiere of Project Runway. All that cutting, draping & sewing motivated me to actually start something and this pattern was calling to me in the loudest voice. I still have no idea what final fabric I'll actually use, but in the meantime I'm enjoying the pre-flight process. BTW, I love what Amber's written about PR on her blog. I love reading what she says about most everything.

The first step was an FBA (full bust alteration). To start, I pinned the existing underbust dart closed and slashed the pattern to create a horizontal bust dart opening so I could keep the underbust shaping from the pattern. Then I filled in the spread with more tracing material.

I needed to add a good 2 inches of FBA (an XLFBA??), which really whacks out (technical term!) the armscye. So, I decided to see what I could come up with using my Pattern Master Boutique (PMB) patternmaking software. My trial pattern piece is laying under the de-altered pattern piece in the photo below. I know this armhole fits so I morphed between my PMB pattern and the Burda tracing, keeping the exact Burda neckline (so the collar fits) and re-angling the PMB underbust dart to match the Burda dart angle.

If I didn't have PMB, I would just continue on with the FBA I started by rotating the side bust dart back to the underbust, which will somewhat open up the armhole again. But since I already know I would also need to adjust the Burda sleeve pattern (bigger), I just took the easy way out and used my TNT armhole/sleeve from PMB. Why reinvent the wheel, right? You can see that the PMB pattern piece is wider in almost the exact amount as the "manual" FBA added.

Here's the re-adjusted pattern tracings pinned together for a quick fitting on Zillie (my dressform). So far, so good.

Now to raid the stash for fabric I only mildly like so I can further test my alterations. I already know the peplum-y thing has to be a bit longer in lieu of the tummy not being flatter, and I'm thinking the neckline may end up too low. Time (and fabric) will tell.


  1. Yay! I finally found Debbie's blog! (I knew there had to be one somewhere...). Thanks for posting the link on SG! ;)

  2. Oooohhhh, another FBA lesson! Thank you for such a detailed explanation of this particular type...I always learn something! And, yes, the pictures are the reasons I can understand what you are talking about! :)

  3. That's how my armscyes look after an FBA! This looks like it's going to be great. Count me in on the slump, too. :( Love your blog!

  4. My goodness you are more ambitious than I am. I wait until I find a pattern that fits with without alterations and then I make 15 things out of it. I am lucky in that many patterns do seem to fit me. And I like wearing loose things. :)

  5. I too like that top. I have been to your other site and bookmarked it and this blog. Absolutly fantastic "how to's". Learned a lot about pants fitting from your pictures, more than the books I have bought!!

  6. I'll be making that blouse too, but I think I'm going to leave off the fringe. Good luck with yours, can't wait to see how it turns out.

  7. When I do an FBA, which is always, I usually add 3 inches per side. I've found that if I move my pivot point higher in the armscye that I get a really good fitting armscye. I usually go to the 1/2 way point for the pivot point.


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