Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Learning about fit

Lately, I've been in the mood to sew for me. Yay! I recently read a quote that said something to the effect of: "Sew for the woman you are now, rather than wait for the woman you want to be." That kind of inspired me. It seems so simple, but reading it really reminded me that no matter what size one is, having clothes that fit is a good thing. So why wait? Why not have good-fitting clothes now? And if I happen to lose weight (ahem... we're not going to talk about the other possibility), and they're too big-- well, that is hardly a bad thing... heck, that would be a rather excellent excuse for new clothes!

pattern cover, Simplicity 3697
Anyway, with all of this newfound inspiration, I decided I wanted to make a shirt. I have a hard time finding shirts that fit in stores, so it seems like a very worthwhile project candidate. I chose Simplicity 3697.

Simplicity 3697, front and back views
I love the lines in this top, and I think it could be very flattering on me. And I have a beautiful cotton that I think would be lovely for it.

So tonight I jumped in and attempted my first muslin. My first step was to figure out how to do a full-bust adjustment (FBA). Using Debbie Cook's tutorial for doing an FBA on a dolman-sleeved top, I came up with this:

S3697, FBA first attempt
Then I went to make a muslin so I could see how it fit.

S3697, first muslin
It needs a lot of work still, I think, including a bigger FBA, lengthening to fully cover my bust, and a modesty panel. Frankly, I'm a little bit stuck at this point. I'm not exactly sure how to go about adding length in that area. In fact, I had this feeling that I needed to add length when I did the initial FBA, but chickened out because of my cluelessness. Add to that, I'm not even sure about this top. I *think* it will look super-cute if I can get it to fit my chest right. But I'm not sure. Just getting this far took me all evening. (And then I needed a break, so I'm writing this.)

What do you think? Ditch it and try something different? Or keep on truckin'?


  1. It almost looks like it is too big all over for you. I read something the other day that is how Nancy Zieman says to choose what size to cut. It is like this: "A front width measurement of 14" is equal to a size 14 pattern. Then, for every 1/2" that the front width increases or decreases, the pattern size increases or decreases by two. For example, a measurement of 13 1/2" is a size 12; a measurement of 13" is a size 10."

    I'm getting ready to try that on some tops for Elizabeth, so will let you know. That pattern looks cute from the envelope!

  2. Well, I don't do clothes even though I made some for my kids when they were little so I am not much help.
    I think making it first with muslin is a great idea.
    I am not sure if you do something else or not. If you can get it to fit right I think it will look great in some fun fabric.

  3. Fitting on yourself is just so difficult! You cannot pin and have it in the right place at the same time! It is a great start! I know I am not a perfect fit for any size known to mankind!! But I do have to say...modesty pannel shmodesty pannel!! Ya got them flaunt them (when appropriate) and just put in an OPTIONAL pannel, hehe!!

  4. I am sooo not a clothes sewer so I am no help. I got a chuckle out of the FBA abbreviation. For some reason all that came to my head was that I would need a NBA, aka, no bust adjustment. :)