I have definitely been busy, not sewing, but studying. I have been working on my Bodice fitting shell! When done, I hope to use it as a guide for fitting other patterns or even, some day, designing some patterns for myself!
A while back, I bought myself the Craftsy courses “Fast-Track Fitting” and “Fast-Track Fitting: In The Details” by Joi Mahon. I was excited to work on improving my pattern fitting. I liked these two courses so much I bought Joi Mahon’s book “Create the Perfect Fit“. Although I like watching videos of “how-to”, when it comes down to doing it, I like having a book or instructions to refer to as I measure, cut and sew. Flipping pages back and forth just makes me feel like I have something solid in my hands.
These two courses are among my favourite Craftsy courses (Craftsy and Ms. Mahon are not paying or asking me to say that, it’s just my opinion). It cleared things up for me when Joi demonstrated how different parts of a flat pattern correspond to the many parts of your body. Joi says that you can take any size pattern, measure yourself in specific areas and adjust that pattern in those areas so it will work for you.
I bought this cotton gingham check material, enough for a bodice, skirt, and probably short pants, thinking the check would help me with my pattern fitting, only to find out that the checks are not on grain. So forget the checks! But even so, the material was a good price for me to practice with. I traced the Vogue fitting shell (#1004) that came with Joi’s first course, one size too small for an extra challenge.
When I measured myself I had difficulty with the back measurements, hahaha, being all alone and not patient enough to wait for someone to come home and help me, I tried my back measurements a couple of times and just went with that – fingers crossed! According to what I had measured, I was to add an inch to the upper back length of the pattern and 1/2 of an inch horizontally to my side seams – that probably due to choosing to cut the pattern one size too small!
After my bodice was sewed together and I tried it on, it felt too loose in the upper back, where I had been having the most trouble measuring myself, so I took out the extra inch in the upper back length that I had originally put in. Oh! Let me add, the instructions did not say to sew the seams showing on the outside, I just did that because I wanted to really see what I had taken in/out and where.
Sorry for the silly photos of me – I look like the Hunchback of Notre Dame – but I am hanging my head down as far as it can go and it is pulling up the bodice back! But I have a reason, I have coloured my hair and can’t show you the lovely result until my sisters get a chance to see it first. It just wouldn’t be fair now, would it? I promise “head shots” with my new hair colour in my next post!
When it came to the front bodice, I needed to add an extra inch vertically to my under bust measurement, and add an extra 1/2 inch horizontally – again to make up for cutting out the smaller size.
I am happy with the fit of my front bodice, even though my upper front is squished together as I have my arms up to take a photo and hide my new hair colour….Sorry!
My last two shots – my side seams, everything where it is supposed to be.
Well that’s the first four lessons of “Fast Track Fitting”. I’ve got some more reading and practicing to do now … the waistline, lower body, arms, sleeves, ease, etc.
But I’m going to take a break and see if I can apply this bodice to my next project, the Sewaholic Yaletown!