The Seam Method of Pattern Alteration

I had originally planned for a final post on items I’d made in 2012 but my husband was playing around with the camera and accidentally deleted the pictures so I will have to save that for a later date (I know, it’s nearly 5 months into 2013 and I’m still talking about 2012 clothes).

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I’ve been in a sewing rut lately, It’s not so unproductive as I’ve been quilting and needlepointing while I figure out my next few garment makes. I had originally planned to start the Colette Violet blouse (I traced my pattern out and prepped my muslin fabric) but I’m wary of all the alterations I need to do on it as I don’t like the boxy fit and it runs a little large and short I hear. In the meantime I’ve been researching and writing down all the possible alterations I may need to do for it.

Fablous Fit
A few months ago I picked up this book at the local library sale for 50 cents. Fabulous Fit by Judith Rasband is all about the Seam Method of Pattern Alteration. The premise of the book is that the slash and spread and pivot methods cause distortions in the pattern that create many more problems, so Judith shows us (with many interesting illustrations) how to make precise changes to the seamline of the pattern. If you want more information, check out this article from the Threads magazine website.  The book is a little dated in it’s advice on body shapes and types and I don’t  necessarily agree with the generalizations about body type, but it does have great advice for common fitting problems and I like the illustrations.

I can’t say if this fitting method is better or worse than other methods because I don’t often have to do pattern alterations other than a sway back adjustment or transitioning between different sizes, but I do have broad shoulders and as this garment has sleeves and is not a knit pattern I may have to make some adjustments.

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Here is the adjustment advised by the book. My only concern is that is appears to have shortened the armscye in the front (I don’t know if you can see it but the zigzag lines indicate pattern overlap, whereas white spaces indicate spreading), which may create another set of problems as I set in my sleeves. I could try the method Sunni demonstrates and see where that takes me.

To fix the boxy fit of the top I will likely add  double pointed darts, this is my mother’s favorite way of fitting a garment.

What do you guys advise?  Do you have a preferred alteration method and why?

McCalls 5578 (OOP)

I finished McCalls 5578 dress last week and got around to taking some pictures to share. I’m not as crazy about it as I thought I would be. It’s a cute and easy project and when I saw Sew Tessuti’s version on Burdastyle I thought I would really love it. It’s supposed to look like this:

M5578And mine looks like this ( I eliminated the color blocking, the facings and used bias tape made from the same fabric instead):

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I tried it on and It’s not a very flattering look for me as my natural waist is significantly smaller than my bust and hip measurement and I have a long torso (It’s fitting a little tighter on my dressform because I lost a little bit of weight and didn’t adjust it on my dressform). It looks much better with a belt, maybe I’ll make a black Obi belt with it.  I do love the fabric – a light and airy voile. My husband suggested, it would make for great beachwear, so beachwear it is. It wasn’t a totally useless project because I finally got a chance to use my one step buttonhole on my machine and I am impressed!

I’m in a quilty sort of mood lately, finally picked up my Craftsy BOM 2012 quilt and started working on it last week. Let’s see how it goes.

Bloglovin’ and Buttons

Greetings to you, to April and to spring!

First things first I’ve been using Bloglovin for while now but I didn’t actually claim my blog though so if you’d like to follow me on Bloglovin, click here:

<a href=”http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/3766806/?claim=zanzgcuz9hp”>Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

In other news, I’ve been working towards a light and airy summer wardrobe. Summer for me means lots of lightweight cotton clothing. I’m not finished  with this particular project yet but I did get to try out the one step buttonhole feature on my Janome Magnolia 7330 (I love this machine more and more). I trained myself to make  4- step buttonholes using my mother’s old Singer Merrit 1812 so this was quite an experience for me. It took a few tries for me to realize that I do not need to actually do anything  except gently keep my fabric straight so now I don’t think I’ll ever go back to the 4-step one!

I didn’t use any interfacing on my placket (I want to minimize facings and linings on my summer outfits) so I just used fusible webbing tape (stitch witchery). They’re not as straightly lined up as I’d like but not bad eh?

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They’re not exactly straight and even, so I had to improvise on marking my button placement. I placed my buttonhole plackett on top of the button one, lining everything up as even as I could.

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Then I took my marking tool and used the opening of my buttonhole as a guide to mark where I would place my buttons.

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And here is the corresponding button placement!

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I try to make buttonholes as evenly spaced as possible but sometimes it doesn’t happen, so the next best thing  (assuming you don’t want to start all over again with buttonholes) is place your buttons in the corresponding place to minimize fabric distortion. I think it turned out fine, I’ll share pictures of the completed dress as soon as it’s done and you can tell me what you think.

Back to it!