Satisfied with the muslin, I moved onto something I’d be proud to wear. My fabric is again a rayon Challis. Purchased at the same time as the muslin fabric but the colors are more me. Clear reds, pinks with a hint of that acid green and some fucia. The fucia is pretty dominant and not one of my colors. I selected clear red buttons hoping that would make the reds come forward.
I trimmed my tissue carefully around the armscyes being sure to remove the extra 1/16 to 1/8″ I’d inadvertently added the first time. I lengthened the center front 2″ and trimmed both front and back to a 1-1/4″ hem. I added a 3/8″ CB seam. If I don’t want it I can always place the tissue along the fold line. For now, I want this bit of insurance. I also added 1/4″ to the CF. When finished the drafted 1″ overlap shrinks to about 5/8″ (turn of the cloth and all). I prefer just a bit more over/underlap. I added my line at 1/4″ and trimmed excess tissue on the other side of the line. Adding closer to 3/8–turn of the cloth and all, eh? On the front, I redrew my hip curve along the side seam. This is hard to explain, when I added the 1/2″ for the hip, I aligned my hip curve with bigger end towards the hem. That created one, long smooth curve. By turning the curve around and placing the bigger end closer to waist, I create an immediate outward curve. I reasoned that in front, my tummy is already increasing in girth at the waist. It’s at max circumference a mere 2″ below the waist. My pear has morphed over the years. I’m more watermelon shaped these days and I need a different front waistline. I added notches at the waist so I can match them up when sewing because I didn’t treat the back the same. I added 1/4″ along the entire back side-seam. I always need more fabric to cross my hips. The last few months, I’ve been adding 1″ to the back and removing 1″ from the front. I may yet do that but for now my final alterations were to the sleeve and cuff. I add 1/4″ along the back side-seam of the sleeve and 2″ to the length of the cuff. I did not add length to the sleeve, which you might have been expecting. I had trimmed the fabric 1″ not the pattern. So no need to add length to the tissue, I hope.
As I cut the front and back, I immediately rolled the pieces and moved them to the ironing board. I wanted to tape the curves before there was the slightest chande of their stretching. I serged the shoulders and back at 1/4″. Normally I would trim both seams down to 1/4″ but I wanted some fit assurance. At the SM I stitched the CB and right shoulder seam at 3/8″. The left shoulder seam I stitched at 1/2″. That’s only 1/8″ more and may not be enough to offset the effect of the uneven shoulders wearing uneven shoulder pads. Then I got in the zone and put the whole blouse together. I reasoned, it couldn’t look any worse than the muslin and I’d wear the muslin.
I was right. This is the best fitting I’ve gotten yet. The back looks perfect.
I see that my shoulder solution hasn’t worked. Not sure if I should call the two-sizes shoulder pads experiment a failure or keep working with them. I purchased 3 pairs of 3/8 and 3 pairs of 3/4″. I’ve used 4 of the 12 pads so I still have 8 or 4 blouses to decide. Because while it isn’t the perfect solution, this is better than ignoring the problem entirely.
After all, on my left side I see only 1 of those pesky U’s:
The right still has about 3
.The shoulder look fairly even, so the different sized shoulder pads are helping:
Also, I’ll point out that I’m using a light colored, NOT busy print which tends to show every little divot. In a dark color or busy print these drag lines might not even be noticeable.
I do strive for perfection. I just don’t throw away everything that doesn’t meet that high standard. I’m not sure what to do next, about the shoulders.
I see my cami peeking out and the hem is still not level. I do know what to do about these. Add 1/2″ length to the front plus 1/2″ around the entire hem.
You know as dressmakers we’re often too critical especially of ourselves. Most people will not even notice the drag lines I’m so concerned about. They simply won’t see the imperfections that are so obvious to me. So I’m putting LH 5202 in my “Patterns that Fit” list and moving on. If/when I discover a better correction, I’ll revisit fitting. For now, I’ve made a lovely blouse. I’m just going to enjoy it and make more just like it.
A comment about body to body measuring or maybe it should be net body-to-body. I’m talking about the Pivot and Slide principle of comparing your body measurements to the measurements of the body for which the pattern was developed. The measurements you find on the back of the envelope. I was much more successful with Pivot and Slide by ignoring the waist while calculating and applying all the other differences between my body and the body for which Loes drafted LH 5202. It was an excellent start. I know there’s still room for improvement because I needed to tweak the amount of ease added to the back and the curve of the front side seam (also ignoring the shoulder issue since there seems to be no way to measure shoulder slope.) I’m going to keep working in this direction. I like to be able to use new patterns. To explore new designers and even new patterns from familiar designers. I don’t like making 7 muslins or 11 fitting sessions. What I did, worked. I had 2 fitting sessions for the muslin. None for the final. Admittedly, I could/should have endured more fitting sessions.