My DH has CAD. After having a 5-bypass surgery last May, he again has blockages. He has been in the hospital this week for a heart cath and stint, and will be going back in two weeks for another. I have had neither the time nor mind to sew. My jeans are laying, cut out, on the sewing table for a week. I will get back to sewing as soon as things settle down a bit here.
I've been reading your blogs this week, however. A daily dose of "sewing talk" via blogging is very good mental therapy.
I've been interested in the different ways that people think about fitting their patterns. A lot of people like BWOF, saying it's a great fit, and have misgivings about the "big 4", feeling they have too much "ease". I was never privileged to be able to sew a pattern without a lot of alterations to it. I've been every size in RTW from 10 to 18 in my lifetime. Regardless of size, I always have had to make the same alterations. Body shape pretty much remains the same, even though there may be more or less of it from time to time! Anyone KNIM? So, I had to learn to fit, or quit sewing, one or the other!
There has been discussion on the PR Jeans Sew-Along about the difference in sewing jeans with stretch fabric vs. stable denim. Some people simply go up a couple of sizes when the fabric has less stretch than the pattern calls for. Actually, you can sew any pattern, with stretch fabric or without, using flat pattern measurements and compensating. In other instances, I've read where sleeve caps have too much ease or shoulders too wide, and the solution being to go down a size. There are a lot of inventive ways that people are dealing with fit.
In my sewing notebook, I have a list of all my measurements. I also have a list of how much ease I like in a specific garment. For instance, I like my shirts to have 4" of ease in the bust, 4" in the waist, and 6" in the hips and 3" in the sleeve girth. That's what feels good to me. I know I want 2" of ease in the thigh of a fitted pant. When I lay out a pattern, I compare the measurements on the flat pattern to those that I want in the finished item.
Knowing how you like your garments to fit is a good tool when working on a pattern.
When making a blouse, I begin by measuring my high bust- not full bust. The high bust measurement will come closest to fitting the chest, shoulder and neckline of the body. Upper body garments hang from the shoulders (or should)! I use the high bust measurement instead of the full bust measurement and trace that size pattern. From there, I measure the flat pattern in all key areas--bust, waist, high hip, hip, shoulder length,sleeve girth, armsythe and sleeve cap, and all length measurements.
I make all length alterations first. Then, I compare the flat pattern measurements to those that I like my finished garments to be, and make the adjustments. Most often, I have to reduce sleeve cap ease, as most sleeve patterns have way too much ease to fit the armsythe properly. I usually have to add to the hip. And--I most often make a muslin, unless the garment is really loose fitting.
Does this sound like a lot of fooling around and being finicky? We like to get to the fun stuff, which is the sewing. I would love to grab a pattern and just cut and sew. I envy those who can. But since I can't, this method works for me and I seldom have bad surprises.
So, do you measure your pattern and do any comparisons? If so, what do you measure? Or, do you forgo all of that and get right to the cutting and sewing?
I'll be sewing ASAP. Have a great weekend and sew much! Or, grab a tape and measure!
7 months ago