My documentation of the creative goings on around here is woefully lacking. Perhaps it's because I have so many unfinished projects! I believe I might take the prize for the one with the most projects going on at one time---- and a bit of ADD thrown in for good measure. Anyhow, here's my first attempt at showing what I'm working on here behind the scenes...
I can follow a pattern and sew pieces together but one of the benefits of home sewing is making a garment that actually fits your individual shape. I've never really altered patterns much. I just made them according to the directions and hoped for the best.
It seemed time to improve my sewing skills a bit. In the hopes of learning a little something about altering patterns and making a well-tailored garment, I decided to take part in the Lady Grey sewalong that Gertie is hosting.
It begins with making a muslin. Hmmm, making a muslin. First impressions--- A LOT OF WORK! But worth it. In fact, how did I ever make a fitted pattern without one? Will I do it again? Well, it's definitely worth the time involved but I do hesitate at the thought of using up material that will likely end up in recycling. Waste not want not, and all that...
Anyhow, Gertie goes into the details over on her blog, but the quick and short version of the muslin process involves tracing both the pattern and the actual sewing lines onto muslin with tracing paper and a tracing wheel, cutting out the pieces, and then thread tracing the sewing lines again--- (so they show on the other side). The muslin pieces are cut out with a 1" or so seam allowance and sewn together following the pattern sewing lines....and then the fun begins. How does it fit?
Typically, I thought patterns fit me pretty well. I thought I had a pretty generic body shape. Well, that was until I really took a good long look at my muslin.
There were problems. Colette patterns are drafted for a C cup bust, which, ahem, I don't have. The lapels gaped. After studying the back, I realized that I not only had to take in the shoulders a bit but I also needed to do a "Sway Back" adjustment. Apparently, I have a sway back. I fussed around with the pattern and reduced the lapel gape and transferred all the alterations to the pattern pieces.
I think I have the fit problems fixed and I'm now ready to cut into the real fabric (a tropical weight wool with a little stretch for the shell and an Anna Maria Horner voile for the lining) and go for it... But first, I had to put away all of my sewing stuff to use my dining room table as it was intended. Ah, the longing for a sewing room continues... So does the Lady Grey project... And now that my sewing stuff is all put away, I'm focusing on cooking projects... I'll finish it, I promise!
You can follow along with the alterations and tips over in the Flickr pool of photos and discussions.