In Fitting Fashion

Pattern Fundamentals: Armhole Contour Darts

 

This is video number three of this pattern fundamentals series all about the bust circle and contour darts. If you've missed the first two, back track a little and watch them here:

Video 1: The Bust Circle Defined

Video 2: Neckline Contour Darts

This week, we're looking at the contour darts used to eliminate gaping armholes. Once again, I'm going to show you where they go, what size they usually are and how to use them. 

I've recommended a couple of other videos in this mini lesson; these links will get you there is a snap! I hope you enjoy!

Two Essential Skills for Pattern Manipulation

Three Ways to Manage the Back Shoulder Dart

PS
If you don't have a basic bodice block that fits you, I can help you create one. Learn how here.

All My Best,
Alexandra

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Pattern Fundamentals: Neckline Contour Darts

 

Today we're using the bust circle that we defined last week to map out the contour or gape darts for the neckline area. If you missed that video, you'll need to watch it to understand how this works.

Pattern Fundamentals: The Bust Circle Defined

In this video you'll find out where to place the contour darts, how large they usually are and how to use them on a lowered and surplus necklines.

Next week you can look forward to a new video in this series where I'll show you how define the contour darts for the armhole so that you can eliminate any gaping in that area as you start designing cut out armhole shapes.

All My Best,
Alexandra

PS
Curious about how to get started with pattern making? You can view the all the pattern fundamental videos right here for free.  To get started on your personal basic block set, start here.

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Pattern Fundamentals: The Bust Circle Defined

 

In the last couple of weeks we’ve been talking about fitting necklines. As you’ve seen in the previous videos, there are definitely some special considerations when fitting your pattern to this area of the body.

Posture plays an important role in the placement of the neck opening as I demonstrated in the forward neck video and body contours or shape will also impact the way a neckline fits as I showed in the video about neck balance.

This week I wanted to dive even deeper into how the contours of the body affect the fit of the neckline as well as the armhole and introduce you to something called the bust circle.

In this video I'll explain what I mean by body contours and show you how to determine the size of the bust circle and how to draw it on your basic pattern.  All this in preparation for mapping contour or gape darts that will solve issues with gaping necklines and armholes.

Enjoy!

All My Best Alexandra

PS If you are interested in developing...

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Quick Tips for Patterns that Fit: Neckline Balance

 

This week I wanted to continue the conversation about neckline fitting so in this video I'm talking about the gaping front neckline and a method of correcting it that you may not have seen before. 

When you start drafting your own patterns or really study a pattern in depth, you begin to notice certain consistencies between all patterns and one of these consistencies I call neck balanceNeck balance is the relationship between the front and back neck width. You see, in order for the front neckline to fit smoothly without gaping and eliminate excess fabric across the front chest, the back neck width needs to be larger (wider) than the front neck width.  If you want to understand more clearly what I mean, simply watch the video, I cover the theory and the practice to correcting this fitting issue.

Enjoy!

All My Best,
Alexandra

PS 
For more help with your personal fitting issues, join me in the Fitting Fun Workshop! You'll work on a project of...

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Quick Tips for Patterns that Fit: The Forward Neck Adjustment

 

This week's Quick Tip is all about adjusting your pattern for a forward neck position. This adjustment is usually required as we advance in age but as we continue to dedicate a large part of our day to digital devices, it's becoming more prevalent in younger sewing enthusiasts as well. 

If you are finding that the back neckline is too low, the shoulder seam too far back and the front neckline too high, this may just be the fix you need.  Watch the video to get two versions of this very simple but effective pattern adjustment for a forward neck posture.

All My Best,
Alexandra 

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News For You: Marjie the Half Scale Alvanon Dress Form

 

Hello!

I've got a bit of news for you this week and it's something I'm really excited about. If you've been following on Facebook, you may have noticed a photo I posted about a week ago.

This is Marjie. She's a new member of the In-House Patterns team and will be serving you soon with some really great fitting and pattern making lessons! Watch the video to learn all about her! (Only I could get this excited about a dress form.)

Mentioned in this video:

Alvanon: https://alvanon.com/
Alvanon Measurements and Specs: https://alvanon.com/measurements-specs/

All My Best,
Alexandra

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Why the Front Pattern is Wider than the Back

 

For my more advanced sewing enthusiasts, this weeks video may be a little on the obvious side but I find that I get this question a lot so I thought I would cover it for those of you who are new to pattern making and fitting. 

Watch the video now and then come back here to continue reading because there's more to the story...

If you are a bit of a pattern making and fitting veteran the fact that the front pattern is wider than the back isn't new, so to keep you engaged, I've got a puzzle for you to solve instead.

Virtually all pattern drafting systems assume a B cup size which results in a front pattern that is wider than the back by 1/2" on each side. As you increase the bust cup size, the front pattern width increases accordingly so for a D cup you may find that your front pattern is wider by 1" on each side.

So here's something for you to consider. Bust circumference and bust cup size do not necessarily correlate, meaning two people with the same bust...

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Quick Tips for Patterns that Fit: Troubleshooting Your Bicep Girth Adjustment

 

Recently I got an email from Gigi. She shared a lovely compliment, made a very valid comment about a blog post I did some time ago and asked a very good question. She suggested that her struggle with bicep girth adjustments was shared by many so in this week's video I share my reply to her email.

Watch the video now to get the whole story.

If you enjoyed this video, let me know! I'd love to get your feedback. If you've got a question or want to share your experience with this particular fitting adjustment, just comment below.

If you'd like to learn more strategies for recognizing, assessing and solving fit issues, there are just 3 spots left in The Fitting Fundamentals Workshop being held on March 10th right here in beautiful Victoria BC. (The cherry blossoms should be out in full bloom just for you.

All My Best,
Alexandra

PS
If you happen to be a Threads Magazine insider, you might also find this article by Kathleen Cheetham useful: Fitting Plus Size...

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Quick Tips for Patterns that Fit: How Patterns Work

 

This week I have a follow up video to Four Things that Will Get You to a Better Fit Faster. If you didn't catch that one you might want to watch it before diving into this one.

In this week's video I'll show you how to choose your pattern size and a quick way to determine the initial pattern adjustments you'll need to make using information gathered from the sewing pattern. I'll also share how sewing patterns are developed and why the quick fit method I presented in last week's video works so well for me. 

Featured in this video is The Pattern Measurement Worksheet which is a FREE download you get when you sign up for The Perfect Fit Guide. If you would like to get your hands on the worksheet immediately, just click the image below and I'll send it to you.

As I mentioned in the video, I'm currently working on a new online course. It's called Designed to Fit: The Bodice Block. You can take a peek at the course outline and get all the details by clicking...

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Quick Tips for Patterns that Fit: Four Things that Will Get You to a Better Fit Faster

 

If you feel short on sewing time and you've been struggling with fitting your sewing projects, you need a quick start guide. Watch this video to get exactly that. I'll go over four things you can do today to get you to a better fit faster. 

After you've watched the video, I'd love to hear if this method worked for you. You can comment below, share a post in the In-House Patterns Studio Facebook group, or send me an email.

If you want to spend a little bit more time perfecting your pattern before sewing up a sample, get The Perfect Fit Guide. It's a free guide I created that outlines the 6 steps to getting the right fit on any sewing project. When you receive the guide, you'll discover all the key measurements you'll need to assess fit, how these measurements relate to the pattern, and what order to work to keep the fitting process moving forward. You'll also get tips for accurately adjusting and refining patterns for trouble free sewing.  Just...

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