OH! If it were only that easy right? Famous last words? Just follow the instructions, that is what the pattern tells me to do right?
Step 1. Take measurements. That is easy enough, though I gaze long and hard at the numbers coming off the tape measure. Can those be accurate? I do it again repeatedly to no avail. The measuring tape has a static way of telling you the truth. You think Karl Lagerfeld thought Adele was “a little too fat”? Just wait until I CAN sing a smash hit tune!!!! (Adele, sweetie, we love you just the way your are!) As for me, well, it is what it is. The workouts have been working but it’s a long long road to getting in shape….sigh.
Step 2. Make length and width alterations. I make some preliminary alterations to the torso length but the instructions tell me to hold off on anything else until I’ve had the first fitting…
Step 3. First Fitting: This is the left side unaltered. The bust and waist darts need to move. The side bust dart is too high and the waist dart is too close to center, both are not near or even close to my bust point! The right side. I marked with a pencil on the muslin where my bust point was and then moved the waist dart over so it would lie underneath. I lowered the side bust dart to point toward the new bust point and then did a small bust adjustment to pinch out the excess cup allowance. (I did as the instructions said to do with a C cup…so although I added room it was just a tad too much!).
Then I turned next to the back. Oh boy, this aint pretty. I don’t even know where to begin! For one thing, I have to do this looking backwards into a mirror so it’s a little bit awkward. Doable but awkward.
I guess the first thing I notice are those wrinkles across the bottom near my waist. I’m not sure what is going on there but the other thing I notice right off the bat is my upper back needs more room. I’m quite broad across the back so I opt to do a broad back adjustment…
Slashing the fabric and looking in the mirror to see if that is what will help. It does… but you can see where I pinned down the right side and I’ve got issues there. The left side is just hanging free and loose, which totally appears to relax. One thing as I was working on the back I noticed I had forgot to do was add additional waist circumference. Oops. I added to the front but I forgot to add to the back. I wonder if that had anything to do with me slipping on the ice Tuesday and hitting my head? Hopefully not.
Well…I transfer the adjustments to paper and trace out a new paper pattern, truing up the edges and seams…
Hopefully tomorrow I’ll be able to cut and sew a new muslin to check the revised alterations…stay tuned!
Oh, in case you are wondering about the alteration reference it is from my trusty Better Homes & Gardens book on sewing… It is a gem. If you can get past the 1961 era decor and occasional reference to women needing to be barefoot, managing the household, and ready for their husbands to come home from a long day at the office (I’m saying this with complete tongue inside my cheek) then you’ll find this book to be a really great reference. Lot’s of how to and some really great pictures!!! I know I’ll be showing you more as we go along!
5 thoughts on “The Basic Pattern Set – Just follow the instructions!”
Thanks for your interesting posts – I’ve bought several of these basic patterns but have never taken the time to work with them.I also bought a drafting book – looks interesting but is also unused. Like you, I was a perfect pattern size in college and early adulthood – not now!
I know. But I’m going to spend the time to make one finally since it has been so long since the last time I’ve done one!
Wrinkling at the lower back could mean the back is too long for you. Pin out the excess at the lower back and you should get a smoother fit. I hope that helps.
Thank you! I will definitely try this!
What can I say? I never had to patience to work with a muslin pattern. The sewing book I have is the “vintage” Vogue Sewing Book. I haven’t sewn for myself in years. I switched over to smocking and sewing heirloom about 30 years ago.
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