Friday, May 01, 2015

Colete Pastille Muslin #2: So Much Better

I'm really glad I decided to cut a second muslin than attempt to fix my first sad muslin.  I did my measurements, made my changes to the paper pattern, cut and sewed the bodice and lo and behold and possibly verily, the fit was so much better it was hard to believe it was the same pattern!

Emboldened, I embarked on the skirt portion where I immediately ran into trouble.  Even armed with measurements, it was difficult to decide which size to cut.  I think this was partially a function of inexperience and not knowing how much ease I actually want in a garment.  But, I do think the pattern drafting is not totally blameless.  The ease in the pattern is 1.5 inches for the bust, 1 inch for the waist, and a bewildering 5 inches for the hip.  However, this is supposed to be a fitted sheath dress and in the book, Sarai says that "for a very close fitting garment, this might be 2" in the bust, 1/2" in the waist and 2" at the hips" (1).  And, looking at the picture of the model, I would guess that's about how much ease there is in the version of the dress she is wearing.

For myself, I compared my measurements with the finished garment measurements and then made sure I had the amount of ease the pattern called for.  As a result, I have an enormous skirt which I have taken in on the sides a lot.  A lot, a lot.  The middle back of the skirt was a hot mess until I did a swayback adjustment which made things somewhat better.  I'm tempted to keep messing with the skirt part of the muslin, but knowing how much better everything became for the bodice just from cutting a smaller size, I think I will recut the skirt in a smaller size and see how that looks before trying to make more changes.

The bodice still isn't perfect.  While the smaller size is definitely better, it's a little too tight in the bust (but not elsewhere), so I think I will need to do a very small full bust adjustment to get the fit right there.  I also still need to shave a little off of the side seams at the waist.  Finally, attaching the skirt made the back middle of the bodice droop (but not the sides) leading me to think I may need to do a swayback adjustment, but I might wait on that until I try a smaller size skirt to see if that makes a difference in the amount of length I want to remove in the swayback adjustment.

(1) Colette Sewing Handbook, p. 64

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