Confidently Create Garments that Fit

Alexandra's Favourite Books for Pattern Making and Fitting

 

I often get asked about the contents of my bookshelf, so I thought today you might be interested to see which books I use the most and would recommend that you add to your library.

Watch the video to get a glimpse inside my 5 favourite pattern making and fitting books. I share what I love about each book as well as some of the areas where the content is (just a little) lacking.

Here are my 5 favourite pattern making and fitting books:

Metric Pattern Cutting for Women's Wear by Winifred Aldrich

Patternmaking for Fashion Design by Helen Armstrong

 Dress Fitting: Basic Principles and Practice by Natalie Bray

The Complete Photo Guide to Perfect Fitting by Sarah Veblen

Fitting and Pattern Alteration: A Multi-Method Approach to the Art of Style Selection, Fitting, and Alteration by Elizabeth Liechty, Judith Rasband, Della Pottberg-Steineckert

Put one on your wish list or send one to a sewing friend, I have no doubt you'll make good use of these books.

I hope you enjoyed that...

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Love to Sew: Episode 197 Fitting Advice with Alexandra Morgan

I was incredibly excited and grateful to be invited to be a guest on the Love to Sew podcast with Caroline and Helen. 

They were both extremely gracious hosts and guided our conversation with ease and expertise in spite of my nervousness. Somehow we managed to cover topics that ranged from where I grew up to how I transitioned from the fashion industry to the home sewing world and still remarkably had time to offer fitting guidance to six lucky listeners who submitted their fitting photos for the show.

If you submitted a photo, you might be one of the lucky six, but even if you weren't chosen I have no doubt you'll learn a lot from this episode. We discussed fitting issues for 3 tops and 3 pants so you'll get a good overview of some of the more difficult to diagnose issues and some very unconventional ways of solving them.


LISTEN NOW


The purpose of this post is not only to draw your attention to the episode but also to provide you with some additional resources...

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What I Did this Summer and Other Stories

Did you ever have to write a "What I Did this Summer" essay for school?

I always found summing up two months of summer activities challenging and I often felt I had to make those activities a little more exciting than they may have been, but I did enjoy hearing about my classmate's adventures.

Since I'm popping in after a summer absence, I thought you might like to get a glimpse of what I've been up to in the hope that you'll find my discoveries helpful and activities interesting.

A LITTLE SEWING...

I did manage to get in a little sewing last month and made a cozy Merino Wool Cowl Neck sweater. I purchased this cosy fabric from Riverside Textiles. Try as I might to wear less black, this was the only color available in this fabric at the time of my purchase, but I can't say I was disappointed.  I know this one will be in constant rotation as the Canadian West Coast weather cools.

I created the pattern from my Custom Stretch Knit Bodice block by referencing...

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The Armhole Sleeve Connection

 

Oh those sleeves!

If you've been struggling with fitting sleeves you are in exactly the right place. Today is the day you'll get the guidance and insight you need to make those sleeves fit. In this video you're going to discover what a good fitting armhole looks like and how each part of the sleeve relates to the armhole it is set to.

Before we can even consider the sleeve we must first consider the armhole the sleeve will be set to. For the purpose of this video, I'll be talking specifically about a standard set in sleeve for woven garments and using the Kayla sewing pattern from my Fitting Essentials online course as an example.

A good armhole for a standard set-in sleeve is dependent on getting a lot of things right on the bodice. The shoulder slope, the armhole depth, the across back, the across front and the armhole width all must be correct before you can begin to assess sleeve fit.

Watch the video now to take a look at what a good armhole might look like on your pattern and...

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Three Ways to Determine Your Cup Size

 

What's your cup size? 

I'm sure this isn't a question you get often but the answer is really important if you want to achieve a good fit on the garments you create. Keep watching to discover three ways to determine your cup size and why one method might work better for you than the others.

Cup Size Theory

Before we dive into the three ways to determine your cup size, let's talk about the theory behind cup sizing. The theory goes like this: Each cup size represents a change in breast size or bust projection of 1.25 cm or ½".

In our little sewing world this means that the front bodice width and length must increase or decrease to accommodate the various cup sizes. If your cup size doesn't match that of the sewing pattern you will need to make a bust adjustment. In order to make that adjustment,  you'll need to know your personal cup size. I'd like to share three methods to determine your cup size and provide some insight as to why one method may work better than...

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February 2021 Live Q&A

 

I'm pleased to bring you the replay of the Live Q&A from February 11, 2021!

In this session I wanted to clarify the concept of garment balance and show you how you can use the balance lines to assess the fit a a garment. I hope you'll join me in thanking Tracy for allowing me to use her fitting photos.

Settle in with a cup of tea or a glass of wine and watch, there are definitely advanced fitting concepts covered in this session.

Here are the links to the extra resources mentioned throughout the session:

Three Advanced Strategies to Achieve the Fit You Want: Register Here

Australian Sewing Guild Event

In-House Patterns Studio Facebook Group

The Lila sewing pattern

How to Prepare Your Pattern for Fitting Part 1 and Part 2

Fitting Sleeves Tutorials

How to Walk a Sleeve

The Armhole Sleeve Connection

How to Eliminate a Bust Dart

Enjoy!

All My Best,
Alexandra

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January 2021 Live Q&A

 

Thank you to everyone who joined in on the Live Q&A Session on January 21, 2021! I am pleased to share the recording with you today.

We chatted about where I'll be focusing my energy this year and shared information about the upcoming Fitting Essentials enrolment dates, current online course offerings, In-House Patterns sewing patterns and the new courses I'll be developing this year.

As promised here are the links to those resources:

Fitting and Pattern Making Tutorials

The Perfect Fit Guide

Fitting Essentials Waitlist

On Demand Online Courses:
The Custom Stretch Knit Bodice
Designed to Fit: The Bodice Block

Sewing Patterns: https://inhousepatterns.com/
Fitting Essentials Size Chart (sizes 2-14 and 12-24) All new sewing patterns will be available in these sizing categories.

Standard Size Chart (Sizes 0-16) Legacy sewing patterns in original pattern sizing.

Private Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/inhousepatternsstudio

The Q&A portion of the live was...

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Skill Building Projects for a Bright December

2020 feels like a guest who has overstayed their welcome!

I for one can't wait until December 31st, when I can usher this crazy year to the door. While it has been challenging to navigate this year, there is always some good that comes with the bad and I am choosing to concentrate on that, so I am keeping hope alive for a much better 2021.

Since 2020 is sticking around for a few more weeks and our Holiday time is likely going to look different than previous years, I thought I would highlight some of the projects you might like to work on to make these last few weeks go as quickly as possible.

 
Pick Up a Pattern

The Chelsea top has always been one of my favourites and if you want something a little dressier than a t-shirt, make it in lace like I did. The Chelsea pattern is a PDF sewing pattern available in sizes 0-16.

With all patterns on sale, this is a great opportunity to try the Lila top. 

Lila is a Fitting Essentials pattern (available...

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Fitting Pants: How to Find the Balance Lines on a Pant Pattern

 

If you’re on my email list you already know that this week I’ll be showing you how to find the balance lines on the In-House Patterns Ellen pants. If you’d like to follow along with your own version of the Ellen pant pattern you can find the pattern HERE. If you’re working with another pant pattern you’ll get some insight on how to find the balance lines on that pattern too.

In the video I share details on finding the balance lines on the size 8 Ellen sewing pattern by In-House Patterns. If you're using another size use the information in the chart below to guide you in placing the Hip, High HIp and Calf balance lines on the size you're working with. Follow the video lesson for the method and the process of finding all the other balance lines.

 In-House Patterns  

Ellen Pant

0

2

4

6

8

10

12

14

16

Knee to Hip

15 ½"  

15 "  

15 ¾"  

15 "  

...

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Solving Back Contour Issues: How to Move a Back Yoke Seam

 

If you caught last weeks video tutorial you’ll know we began a discussion about back contour shaping on a pattern with a back yoke. In that video I shared a method of removing the yoke seam so that you could better understand how to make a standard rounded back adjustment. This week I wanted to talk about the best position for a yoke seam line and how to customize it for your body.

The back yoke is a great styling choice when you have a rounded back because it allows you to shape the back by creating an invisible dart in the yoke seam. This invisible dart, hidden in the seam, has the ability to give you a more refined fit but like a dart the styling will work best if the yoke seam is addressing the most prominent area of the back. If the yoke seam is too high or too low, you may find that you are not achieving the fit you hoped for.

The most prominent area of the back spinal curve usually occur between 2 1/2” to 5” below the base of neck. (That’s about 6 to...

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