Top 5 Reasons Garment Makers Struggle with Fitting

fitting fundamentals Jun 29, 2022

It's no secret that most of us struggle at one time or another with fitting the garments we make. Fitting information is the number one reason garment makers find my website. So I've been thinking alot lately about the reasons why we struggle so much with fitting.

Here are the top 5 reasons why garment makers struggle with fitting:

1. They are unaware of their current personal fitting landscape.

Fitting is not just about body measurements, it's about body shape and proportion too so I highly recommend you take fitting photos along with your body measurements each sewing season so you are aware of how your body has changed over time. It will make assessing fit much easier and you'll begin to understand the pattern shapes needed to create garments that fit you.

2. They assume that pattern size = pattern fit.

If you've been sewing for a long time, I'm sure this doesn't apply to you but it's an easy assumption to make so I encourage you to review the pattern company's sizing chart to familiarize yourself with the body that the pattern company has designed for. This will give you valuable information that will help you alter the pattern to fit you.

3. They focus on the most offending fitting issue first.

Even I am guilty of this one! Always bring yourself back to a systematic approach and assess the fit of your sample from the top down. Work on length adjustments first, contour adjustments second, width adjustments third and girth adjustments last. If the garment it too tight to begin with girth can be approached first to loosen the tight areas but don't reduce girth until you've worked through the length issues.

4. They don't make a fit sample.

I know it feels like a waste of time and many of us skip this but remember, length, width and girth adjustments are quite easily made to the pattern before you sew but most contour issues (aside from cup size) will need to be assessed on the sample. Making a quick sample will actually save you money, fabric and time.

5. They Ignore Garment Balance.

Garment balance is the most important principle in fitting. Drawing in the vertical and horizontal balance lines on your sample can be a huge help in assessing fit.

To help you understand how to avoid these fitting struggles I'd like you to review these fitting tutorials. They cover the concepts I've shared here in greater detail.

Your Fitting Questions Answered

An Explanation of Garment Balance

General Guidance on Fitting (Love to Sew Podcast Guest Episode)

How to Prepare a Pattern for Fitting

and so much more...

I hope you find these fitting tutorials helpful! They are the foundation for your fitting success.

I'll chat with you soon!

All My Best,