After giving myself over night to think, I realized my biggest worry was the neckline. Usually Burda necklines are too plunging for me and #124 was no different. But I think it is also too wide for me. I extend the shoulders towards the neck to about an inch. Not sure this is really needed, so I just chalk the neckline changes on the fabric and promise to fix the pattern permanently if this turns out to be the right choice.
Chalking and cutting the back :
Repeat on front.
Another still troubling thought: total ease. If Burda sizing is right, I’m going to have way too much ease. I have added wider side seam allowances and am using a knit fabric. Troubling here are the numbers I filled-in on Brad’s Chart. According to those numbers, the pattern could be too small. I decide to do nothing at this point. To trust Burda and the fit insurance I’ve added; AND to be ready to change things as needed.
Burda adds very few notches, dots or other notations on their patterns. One marking that Burda consistently makes and which I really appreciate is the waist level . That’s how I measured and determined I needed the 1″ BWL. I really missed the princess seam match notches usually found on all other patterns. I like those notches telling me I’m spot on. I tried to get by through by resting the fabric on my cutting board while carefully matching raw edges and pinning frequently . I serged the CB at 1/4″. I added 1/2″ SA but I’m finding that I need an additional 1/4″ ease across the back as well as the 5/8″ length added through the RBA. Oh and the hip certainly doesn’t object to a little more wiggle room. Besides if I don’t need that extra ease, it will be simple to stitch the seam at 1/2″. I basted the rest of the seams together using WST in the bobbin. I basted the shoulders and princess seams at 1/4″; side seams at 1/2″. Still, I felt uncomfortable; unsure. Would I have enough ease? Even using a knit fabric?
The first fitting mostl reassured me about all those changes and decisions I made. I had plenty of ease and length. The shoulders were a little wide and the neckline a little close (both fixable) and there was too much fabric flopping around at the top of my princess seams (as expected). Then I lifted my arm and discovered that the armscye was entirely too low. It barely covered my bra by a scant 1/4″. Was that intentional? Was that part of the dressy/black tie look Burda was pitching?
I grabbed my tape measure and checked length from shoulder to BP
(PS Above is not the correct way to measure.)
I was surprised to find the blouse measured 11″. I’m 10″. Most people are 10″ or thereabouts. Burda chose 11″ which I think says that the armscyes are low because they are drafted for a body longer through the upper bodice vice an armscye drafted for an evening look. I opted to stitch the shoulder seams at 1″. Noting how roomy this blouse is, I also stitched the side seams with 3/4″ seam allowances. WOW good choice:
I’m almost there, fit wise. If only I’d noted that the shoulder-to-bust measured 11″; I could have avoided a whole fitting!
Preping for the 3rd fitting I tweaked the princess seams. Relying on my CC0456 experience, I increased the princess seam SA between armscy and mid-point by 3/8″ in front and 1/2″ in back. I took pics and ran upstairs to see the effects of this change. At the computer and I just couldn’t see. The bright colors practically blinded me. I converted the full-color photos to Sepia and then drew lines. Well actually, I hunted for shadows and drew blue lines wherever I could find a shadow. I this think this 3rd fitting is pretty good .
Still too long between shoulder and waist, as if the BWL needed to be 1.5″ instead of 1″. I also note that the right side (the side of my lower shoulder)
has some gaping (pink arrow) whereas, the left is near perfect. I went back down stairs and stitched the right shoulder 1/4″ deeper. I also let the side seams out between tummy and hip 1/4″. Dang! if that wasn’t the right answer. I finished the garment. Final fitting:
If you look closely, the right side is still a little droopy. I think the right side princess seams may need to be stitched deeper still.
I did not stretch the neckline FOE enough. When finished it gaped. I did Peggy’s trick and stitched a little dart at CF just through the FOE turning it into a V-neckline that hugged my neck.
Not having stretched the neckline enough, naturally, I stretched the armscyes too much.
They were not this high before adding the FOE. I’ll probably have to cut and reapply the armscye FOE. I’m waiting for my first full wearing to decide. Also did you note, that I have cap sleeves?
I was going to trim the shoulder length but I’ve been admiring the extended shoulder of Loes Hines Cap Sleeve T and decided to keep this as it is.
I was curious about this fabric described as “crepe knit”. I don’t believe I’ve heard the term before and I’m certain I have not sewn with it. I spray starched and pressed before cutting. Crepe can get very crawly but this wasn’t bad at all. It is light weight, and drapes beautifully like my rayon challis. It behaved at the sewing machine as well. I did need to weave the pins through taking 2 bites instead of one or some of the pins would fall free. I don’t consider that a problem until all the pins drop away leaving me with a pile of fabric to align while stitching.While I understand some of you are really sensitive to poly, I’ve decided to add crepe knit to my list of buy-worth fabrics.
- Shorten dress pattern to blouse length ( – 12″)
- Added Upper chest 1/2″ tuck (Total 2″ removed above the waist)
- Added Redrafting and Truing armscyes
- Raise neckline 3″
- RBA 5/8-removing back darts
- Seam Allowances
- Revised 1/4″ CB 1/4″ added ease (total 1/2″ added CB)
- Shoulder seams 1/4″
- Sew Right shoulder SA 1/2″
1″Side Seam fit insuranceRevised
- add 1/2″ from underarm to waist
- add 3/4″ from waist to hem
- 1/4″ everywhere else.
- Princess Pinches
- Trim from pattern
- 3/8″ Front
- 1/2″ Back
- Stitch Right Princess seams 1/8″ deeper
- Trim from pattern
Lots of changes. Some because I’m not ignoring the right side differences caused by my lower shoulder but am listing them as separate changes .
During the tissue stage, I measured the pattern circumferences and the back waist length. I need to add checking shoulder to bust length at the tissue stage. This isn’t the first time I’ve worked with a pattern with an 11″ upper bodice measurement, but it is not common. Still I’d rather avoid the problem in the future especially since it is a quick measure and then tuck of the pattern pieces.
Before I call #124 a TNT, I need to make a second version. I need to verify the last batch of tissue alterations. I also still have an issue with the upper bodice length. I haven’t made the tissue alteration. I don’t want to cut length off at the top of the shoulder. That will make the shoulder wider and will require several armscye alterations. The armscye length is usually about 1/4-1/3 curve. Making up the remaining 2/3-3/4 total length is the straight line joining curve to shoulder. If I change the length at or just under the shoulder, the curve part of the armscye will form about 2/3-3/4 of the length — just the opposite of standard. If I make the change further down, I must change all 4 pieces across 2 curves (armscye and princess) and still redraw the entire armscye. Right now, I don’t have an elegant fix.
Despite those 2 issues with this pattern ,I feel comfortable saying that the armhole princess is a good fitting choice for me. I’ll be pursuing more armhole-princess styles and also looking for yokes or horizontal seam lines in the upper 1/4-1/3 of any bodice. Sure, I’d like to make a classic T (front, back sleeve). The reality is I can’t get a good fit that way. I need s-e-a-m-s. Some kind of princess style is going to be my new T shape.