Thursday, May 5, 2011

V8648: Alterations and Muslin

I'm not moving quite as fast as I wanted, but I'm still making good progress. The first (yes, there will be more) alterations are done and the muslin is actually fairly decent (ode to George Carlin). The final dress will not be two-toned like this, although I like the look. But I am planning for it to have a contrast waist so I'm not all one big print head to toe. These pics make it painfully obvious just how much comfort eating I've been doing over the last few years. Sigh. Sewing for the body I have now and planning to sew for a "new" body by this time next year.

The front is mostly good, but it's too wide in the neckline/shoulders. You can see my bra strap and then some. I'm not at all thrilled with the bias panels throughout. They are a pain to work with. My final fabric is a stretch woven, so I'm pretty sure I'll be cutting it on grain and substituting the stretch for the bias. If you could see the bottom hem clearly here, you'd see how much difference there is in length between the panels due to the bias. You can definitely see the seam ripples though. Yuck.

The back is also too wide in the upper sections and a squidge too narrow over the cheeks. Big surprise there and I have officially turned into my mother. ;-) I'll let the seams out in the skirt and take them in on top.

Here are my alterations for the front. It looks like a lot, but it's really not anything out of the ordinary for me for a top or a skirt. There are just a lot of pieces to keep track of for this particular dress.

The upper sections are just a usual FBA for princess seams a la Fit for Real People.I made width adjustments across the side and front pieces to put the princess seam over my apex, which is why you see all those slashes/spreads across the middle section too. (This adjustment is also detailed in FFRP with the princess seam bust adjustments.)

Before doing any FBA adjustments, I pinned the upper and middle sections together like this:

For this pattern, all the edges don't fit together perfectly because the construction order changes the size of the pieces a little. I just guessed my best and aligned landmarks how it made the most sense to me. Also, be sure when you're taping the new tissue in to fill the spreads that you remember the pieces will still need to be separated when you're don, so don't tape them together at those areas. Luckily, I didn't goof on that this time. Usually, I would have to say, "Ask me how I know."

Below are the alterations for the back. I needed to add more width to the waist so I slashed from the shoulder downward and spread at the waist what I needed. It's now too wide at the upper back so I should have just altered at the waist and trued the sideseams. I'll need to take in the upper section, which is basically exactly that alteration instead of what I did. Oh well. Can't win 'em all. I really just think this neckline is just set inordinately wide, so beware.

For both front and back skirt sections, I wanted to keep the peg-ness of the skirt so I didn't make width alterations evenly all the way down the pattern pieces. Instead, I slashed horizontally at my hipline and then vertically to the upper seam. I spread the hip area and then trued the side (or sides) to the hem like in this section below from the front:

Lastly (for this round anyway), I combined my usual square shoulder adjustment with tilting the neckline angle inward, as both a preliminary tissue try-on and Patty the Snug Bug warned that it was going to be too wide without adjustment. To do this, I slashed as you see below, leaving a hinge on the neckline side. Since this "wedge" is usually added to the top of the shoulder seam for square shoulders, I thought this was a brilliant combo fix. ;-)  If you don't have square shoulders, you'll probably still want to do this and then likewise trim off the shoulder seam to compensate.

For the next muslin (I'm only going to muslin the upper section again), I'm going to narrow the front and back middle sections and on the front, reshape and reduce the bust curve. These should be small tweaks so overall I'm pretty happy that my alterations were darn close on the first try.

Parting Shot - How Tyler's crewmates commemorate their CO's last flight with the Unit:


  1. Thank you so much for the pictures. Seeing where you add to the bottom makes me realize that adding onto the side seams does not give me the room over my stomach where I need it. I'm also going to try the shoulder tilt. Keep those pictures coming--I always learn something new. Ta.

  2. Lots of wotk but in the end you always have a great fitting garment.

  3. I'm working on a Vogue dress right now and I have noticed that the shoulder and upper body fit is really, really weird. I started with a size 12 (I have used a 14 in the past), and I still have to take it in at the upper bodice. Not from the ribcage or below, just above the bust. It looks like you're seeing the same thing. I wonder if they changed their sloper?

  4. ahhhhh --- NOW I remember - I had to angle those darn shoulders SERIOUSLY to help them stay on my shoulders! I trimmed the whole shoulder piece about an inch, then I cut at an angle, leaving the outer edge of the shoulder alone and angling the scissors to make an angled cut that removed about 1.5 inches from the inner side of of the shoulder piece/neckline - just like your square shoulder/tilting neckline adjustment on piece #2, but without tissue as my shoulders are wimpy!

    I also remembered how much I pegged the princess seams of the skirt - i left the sides alone, but removed quite a bit from the back princess seams!

    This one was a bit of a bear to fit, but I really love the shape! All those slightly-not-matching pieces were a bugaboo to keep straight when I was adjusting the pieces!

  5. Oh, muslin fitting - isn't it fun?

  6. "I have officially turned into my mother." hahaha!! :D I hear you. I have officially turned in Aunt Corrine. ;)

  7. Your dress will be perfect. I loved the denim dress you made--a year or so ago, and always intende to copy it. It's still on my to-do list.

  8. Nice pics of the last flight!
    Heya, the nice thing about comfort eating is comfort still has its place, and can be diversified to include lots of ways of feel good. Oh and eating stuff like pineapple and mango is also comfort eating and good for you ((hug))

  9. Thank you for sharing your alterations on this dress. I'm taking a stab at this pattern.

    Rose in SV


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