1974 Revisited

Hands up…who remembers Gunne Sax by Jessica…the long flowing lace embellished voile prairie dresses that were everywhere hippies gathered?

So, just when I think the bridal season is coming to a close…in walks a treasure. A wedding dress that now has to be transformed into something larger for the 40th anniversary celebration. Here we go…parents shield your children’s eyes:

P1180374P1180373P1180372 copy The story goes like this:

Back in 1974, when this bride was about to walk down the aisle she realized that her father would have a heart attack if she was showing cleavage for the church ceremony so her sister noticed a pair of lace panties on the bed and she grabbed them and hand stitched them to the deep V for modesty. Everyone knew but her father.

Now 40 years later, the dress has been resurrected to make an appearance at a gala celebration in Seattle on New Year’s Eve. The bride says she may wear a shrug as the weather will be cold…if you have ever been in the Northwest on Jan 1, you would be a lot better off in a parka! So from the back view you can see we need 12 inches of something to fill the gap. The corset back idea is not what she wanted, she said I could find fabric and “tuck it in” back there, she even brought along an old lace camisole to show me. My magic wand was no where to be found so I said I would remove and open the 2 sashes and flatten them out to make some panels to add the 12 inches we needed in order to close the zipper from armhole to past the hips.

Let’s get busy…P1180382P1180383 Well, well, someone has been here before me! Look at those raggedy side seams! Someone took in those puppies and did not own a serger.P1180384

The zipper has been messed with and does not line up.P1180387P1180386

The more I investigated, I realized that someone who tried on this dress before must have really forced the zipper to open wide and the teeth have come away from the adjoining teeth so it leaves a hole when zipped…great…let’s sort that out first…realign that and everything else will fall into place…fingers crossed!

Let’s make some panels and interface them.P1180392 Can you see the chalk marks on either side of the ruler? That is the basic shape of the new seam lines needed to fill the gap.

Where are they going? Here:P1180394P1180393 Notice as well that the last seamstress cut away the lining for some reason..nice touch…that will need patching too. But the one good thing in this mess is when I opened up the side seam…out flopped 8 inches of sleeve underarm that was just folded and sewn into the side seam. No wonder the biceps were so tight!P1180390P1180391 So with this extra 8 inches and the extra 6 inches of the bodice, all I have to do is some gentle gathering of the sleeve when sewing it to the new underarm top edge…I’m so excited! I am restoring the dress back to the original shape and size!P1180395P1180397P1180399 and from the outside looking in:P1180403P1180402

OK, sleeves sorted out lets see those panels. I made sure I had a new center seam so it did not look like there was just a huge patch put there and if she ever wanted sashes, there would be a place to attach them.

P1180400P1180401 You may notice the panels are whiter than the dress but interfacing had to be used and she will have her arms and sleeves down and they will be covered.

With the panels all basted, the client returns for her final try-on:P1180435 P1180436-2 In the last photo, you can see how far her original side seams slid forward to accommodate her bust. Now the side panels can sit on her waist and the new sashes can be attached further back.

Things are pretty much good except the dress is now 3 inches too long and I suggest we remove that lower ruffle. Then the bride says, “I want a bow in the back like 40 years ago so make that narrow ruffle into sashes and attach them.” Great…now I wish I could have just done that in the beginning but we didn’t know the dress would relax and be too long. Once that is completed Cinderella can be off to the ball.P1180450

If you are wondering if Mrs Mole wore this type of dress back then…yes, I did but I wore it as a maternity dress waiting for my first-born to arrive, which she did, 6 weeks early…she has always been in a hurry.

Merry Christmas everyone !



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Too Tall and Too Tight

A bride came in with a dress she ordered from NY from David’s Bridal without trying it on. Vera Wang produced this little honey complete with her signature over-sized organza roses.Vera-Wang-White-Ball-Gown-V Vera-Wang-White-Ball-Gown-VW351029-Soft-White-2011-2Like so many brides, the first time they see themselves in the big mirror in the sewing room, they sort of growl and moan under their breath and start pulling at the edges of the dress. This poor bride was over 6 ft tall and stunning but the bodice of the dress was too small.

The shoulder straps needed to be let out to the very edge of the seams to gain an inch of length and the side seams had to be let out 2 inches each side so she could breathe and the zipper would eventually close. The side seams at the hips needed to be taken in for some better shaping. All this could be done but she revealed that she had visited another sewing center in town and they told her, “The dress fits fine, all you need to do is go to the gym.” Imagine! Not only does that send a bad message to the bride but it also says, “we really don’t want to be bothered”.

The one thing that surprised me about this dress was the fact that the bride did not want to see the gigantic roses or the hip ruffles. Now from the stock photos..that’s pretty much what this dress has going for it but again the alteration can be done…it’s just labor after all.

Let’s see what had to be done:P1180355 Each of the 2 roses sections had to be un-tacked and gathered up tighter and narrower and re-attached (hand-tacked) with the vertical ruffles flipped over them concealing their fluffiness.P1180356


A 3 point tulle bustle was made to get all that supporting layer(s) off the ground before deciding on the ruffled organza layers.



Here we are with a possible 3 point bustle…where are the buttons going to go in all this meringue? How can any bridesmaid find the loops?



With all the side seams and shoulder seams completed and linings re-sewn the bride brings in a head band with elastic bands and some ribbon to make a belt.

P1180371  She thinks this will draw the eye away from her hip ruffles and roses. I hand sew all the beaded edges to the satin ribbon and then tack the belt to the dress at about 8 different places (seams). The belt being straight and the body being curved we had to dip the back of the satin lower but it followed the ruching and worked out OK.P1180368P1180369P1180370

After everything was done we ended up with larger pearl buttons for the bustle (to carry the extreme weight of the fabrics) and narrow satin ribbons tied to each loop in case the bridesmaids are a little tipsy.P1180414


Roses are minimized and the bride can breathe…my job here is done!

Ten days till Christmas and there are still brides to finish…where are those elves?


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Sew Bad Saturday #5

This Saturday we have the amazing Amanda from http://symondezyn.wordpress.com

She has completed the Andy Coat pattern from Namedclothing.com and had less than wonderful results despite her alterations and planning. Please read though her experiences and leave comments and suggestions for her:


 I just want to preface this by saying, the reason this is “sew bad” is due to poor choice of style on my part – the pattern itself is fine – just not for my body!! lol
Being blessed/cursed with a full bust means I have Sew Bad makes from time to time, as I learn what styles work and don’t work for my figure. I had a lot more when I first started sewing but I’m still learning so I still get one like this from time to time :)

Why did you pick this pattern?
This is one of those makes that I envisioned very differently. In the modeled pattern pics (those trick me every time! lol) the silhouette looks slimmer; more tailored. In reality, a full bust (and adjustments made to fit said asset) makes the silhouette much more…. well, BIG lol, and looks more tent-like than tailored. In addition, I thought the collar-less style would be convenient, as I wear a lot of scarves, but what it does is it creates a high neckline that is again, not flattering on my full bust. I should have known this; I know what necklines work for me in clothing; obviously the same principles apply in outerwear.


What size did you think you were according to their envelope numbers?
Sz 40 (European sizing)

What size did you cut and did you alter before cutting?
Sz 40 (European sizing) with 2″ FBA and 2″ added to sleeve length

Did you encounter difficulties others would like to avoid?
No issues with the pattern itself (unless you hate PDF patterns; there’s a lot of taping and tracing needed LOL) – just a really poor style choice on my part, and probably not a good choice for the other full busted ladies among us :)

Is there anything in the photos we cannot see that you wanted us to know about?
To try & fix the shape, at first I was wearing it belted but the excess fabric was slipping up above the belt line, creating a “poof” that is decidedly unflattering on my figure. Unbelted the jacket looks too big on me but at least it’s in an “I’m wearing my boyfriend’s overcoat” kind of way, which (while not flattering), is somewhat more acceptable.

Is this garment wearable with tweaking or not?
As the jacket is lined, any alterations would be major, not really tweaking. It’s definitely a style fail, and I don’t love it, but I don’t completely hate it either & fills an immediate need in my closet, until I can make a suitable replacement.

Its saving graces: The fabric is a tropical wool suiting and the lining is Bemberg; this makes for a lightweight combo which is both insulating and water resistant – a perfect fit for our chilly wet West Coast weather. That and unlike RTW coats, this actually fits my bust & arm length, due to my custom adjustments.


Thumbs up or thumbs down on buying this? Worth the effort?
Thumbs up if you can suit the style. Named makes really well-drafted patterns (I recently made the Vanamo cocktail dress with great success) and it’s a shame I can’t give this one a good review, myself, but others have made it work for them – I think it is a thumbs up as long as you aren’t too big in the chest.

Do you want suggestions on how to “make it work” or is it beyond that?
No suggestions needed – I’ve accepted it’s beyond help unless I want to make major alterations to either myself or the jacket LOL (and no, I don’t LOL). All in all, I knew this style was a gamble going in & I probably won’t make it again but it is (temporarily) wearable for all that, and more importantly, I am that much better armed for my next coat project, which will definitely be in a style that’s more decidedly my own :)

Many thanks to Amanda for being brave and sharing with us!

And many thanks to all of you for such an overwhelming response to the last post. Your true confessions and candid stories were a delight to read and they allowed others to come forward and chime in with similar strong feeling on so-called freebies.

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Pimping for Patterns/Fabric/Books

There is a growing trend among sewing bloggers and it is not as sweet as it seems.

First, there is the free pattern scheme for “testers”. You are given an envelope with a dubious pattern made by either a company contracted in China or by some other means with a designer’s name on it. You get excited because it has a price tag of $20 or 20 pounds and you want to do the happy dance. You feel like you have been invited to join the cool kids at the lunch table. Let’s analyze what you really got:

The pattern is not worth anything unless it has been bought and paid for by someone, namely you, a customer. Unless that happens it is worthless. Next, the supplier asks you to use your own fabric that you paid retail for to make up the pattern. You do all the cutting out and measuring and layout and stitching. You use your own thread and notions and then spend more time taking photos to display on your blog. What a proud moment for you! You may even enter the photos and glowing review on other blogs and websites…the more you spread it around the more valuable you are to the supplier. You may or may not disclose you got a freebie.

But…the big but…how many hours have you spent from start to finish? Was it one of the baby doll skater dresses that are everywhere? Let’s say 7 hours of labor (minimum wages $70), 3 yards of primo fabric you love and bought and dragged out of your stash ($35+) and photo shoots and working on your blog another 2-3 hours ( $30). OK, you are proud of yourself and thinking you have reached thousands of other sewers makes it all worthwhile…or does it?  You feel honored to have been selected to be THE seamstress to make this fabulous pattern. You got a free pattern worth nothing and you spent a minimum of $135 to promote someone else’s pattern. What a great deal. The supplier sits back, may or may not correect any flaws in the original pattern, and waits for the pattern orders to roll in and they will roll in because you and only you have done such a good job with your candid review…or was it totally un-biased? If you had paid for that pattern with your own money ($20 +) plus shipping and it turned out the same way or more of a wadder, what would your review had been? I wonder?

Here is the other scheme out there…free fabric…a fabric store wants to unload a pile of crap fabric they bought for way below wholesale and they need someone to use a spare 2.5 yards of this stuff so others will swarm to their website and order it until they run out. They offer you the bait, you bite, and we start all over again…you pick a pattern from the stash or buy a new one from Vogue because they suggested you go big or go home. You spring for an artistic variety aka baggy, layered with odd seams running diagonally and weird collars and asymmetrical hems…you know the sort…it says, “I am hip and on the cutting edge of fashion”. You spend $30+ for that high end pattern, you cut it out making sure to include photos of the said fabric on your cutting board and you stitch it up. You encounter loads of problems with the fit and directions and yet you assume it is just you because you are not as experienced as the supplier thought. You can’t let them down, they have invested 2.5 yards of crap fabric in you and you are expected to turn out something in quick time.

You sweat and drink way too many lattes along the way and vow never to do this again because you know you will never wear this outfit anyway…not in your town, not anywhere…you may just give it to your cousin, she will wear anything. Let’s total up the damage: labor 15 hours for a designer pattern ($150), your notions, thread, elastic, seam binding, buttons etc ($20) and your time for photos and blogging ($30). You have invested $200 to promote the fabric dealer’s crap fabric and website for thousands of unwary readers. The fabric supplier will certainly unload all the yardage left and make a tidy profit…you will give that $200 rag to your cousin will be wearing it to Whole Foods to buy kale and radicchio. Again, you may or may not disclose to your readers that you got a freebie.

Do you understand why I have named this latest scheme “Pimping for Patterns/Fabric/Books”? What is the difference between a working girl displaying her wares on the corner of Hollywood and Vine for a pimp versus a sewer displaying her garments on the internet? At the end of the evening both have been used and abused. You will be asked to do this over and over if the supplier gets a good enough response…how many men drive around and around the corner and ask you into the car? How many other sewers, on your recommendation alone, buy untried patterns and crap fabric? Its a dirty little game.

Do not be flattered by being used, for being used cheapens you, your skills and the skills of all the other sewers and professional seamstresses worldwide. Worldwide, yes Ma’am we are a global village now and if the word “Community” is familiar to you in regard to sewing it means “suckers”. Retailers use these 2 words interchangeably. You follow popular bloggers, you buy what they are promoting whether it be fabric or patterns or books and you feel like a warm, fuzzy participant of her “community”. Guess again!

I have included some first hand experiences below from bloggers who have fallen into this trap and wanted to share their views:

Oh wow! “Miss X’ emailed me with a testing offer! I must be one of the best seamstresses. Yes I’ll do it! Yes I’ll do it! Yes I’ll do it!
It’s a deep V cleavage-revealing maxi dress more suited to someone 4 inches shorter and 60 lbs lighter. Um ok, It’s still flattering to be asked?….

This pattern was nowhere near my size. I’m going to have to scale this up a million times and change the bust curve, the waist line and do an FBA. Um ok, but it is flattering to be asked?!
I’m on my third crappy muslin and 16th hour. My husband is eating take out, my house is a wreck and Miss Y has emailed me 3 times to make me shake a leg and every time I mention an issue, she politely talks down to me about my sewing experience. I feel so bad letting her down and my family.

I’m supposed to take semi professional photos of the finished garment. I can’t blog this looking like crap- everyone will think I can’t sew?!  I’m going to have to scrap the instructions and just do what I have to do make it match the envelope picture. No! No pictures of the back- it’s a train wreck!!! My reputation and blog is on the line! Then I have to pretend I actually bought this… I hate deceiving my readers like this.

I hate this pile of artistic/cutting edge pattern pieces all staring at me. They are taunting me. I’m going to sneak it and the jacket/cape into the trash- I’m still too hostile and downhearted to look at it in my sewing room. But Miss Z gushed all over me so I have to make nice. Can I tell my readers to avoid this train wreck??? Is that dishonest? Damn it, I want my time, fabric, integrity and sanity back!!!!! I wish I had never given in to this flattery, it is like I sold my soul to the devil…never again!

So sewers…the question is: Are you willing to be a “working girl” with a sewing machine? Are you willing to auction off books written with re-hashed techniques? Are you willing to be a fabric-pusher? All these options seem to be infiltrating the world of sewing blogs like an epidemic and there is no vaccine except a dose of integrity which seems be in short supply this season.

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Saved the Best (hardest) for Last?

Is it my imagination or just plain weariness after completing 48 bridal gowns and 41 bridesmaids this season that the last one is more challenging?

First, the bride lives 111 miles from me through a dense National Forest with mountains and rivers and the trip one way is almost 3 hours. Second, she bought the dress Allure P960 many, many sizes too large. No additional pressure but she is getting married in India with hundreds of local guests and family in attendance to fawn and inspect her authentic American wedding gown.

Let’s start with some first try-on photos and see what she wants and doesn’t want:

First, we have to hike up the shoulder seams almost 3 inches (remove beads, take in seams, replace beads), then narrow the shoulder straps to one inch (remove beads, stitch a guide line, trim away excess, replace beads). Whatever I cut off the straps has to be inserted into the center “V” for modesty as this will be a Christian ceremony in a Hindu culture.

try on 3 Let’s pin out the center back (remove lapped zipper, remove 12 buttons, remove beads, take in 4 inches, replace with invisible zipper, replace beads, re-attach 12  buttons. What you can’t see is a long hook and eye boned corset inside that also must be taken in and boning re-arranged and re-attached to the bodice.try on 2try on 1    13-corset

The front lace hem is about 1 inch too long but she decided to keep it that way as long as I can hike up the entire train so she can dance. Initially, I had hoped/prayed to have only 3 bustle points but the weight of all that tulle will require 2 separate bustles like in other lace dresses.try on 4try on 5try on 6try on 7

After she leaves the dress, I get to work basting the new invisible zipper in and trimming the layers of tulle and netting that are way too long. “Why change the zipper” you might be thinking…well, have you ever tried to make a lapped zipper curve into the body 4 inches and then back out again…at least an invisible one will make the turns needed and I use the thicker ones designed for wedding dresses. 1-flip-over-head First, the entire train is flipped up and over the front of the mannequin and clipped.2-under-bustle All the netting and tulle will be trimmed level and bustled with 3 points.3-ready-to-cut Using my favorite scissors I’m ready to sit on the floor and trim away.4-trimmed-layers5-trimmed-front


Next I try a 3 point bustle but lots still hangs in drooping “dog ears”.

6-3-point-bustle Then I try a 5 point bustle7-5-point-bustle but it is still dragging bits that will get stepped on and rip the hem.

With 7 points most of the hem is up and even off the floor.P1180353

What next? Let’s see about those straps and find the best place to cut off the extra. I run a line of short machine stitches to keep the lace and tulle under it together.9-left-strap-front10-back-left-strap11-right-front-strap Thankfully there are breaks in the lace design that allows for separation and won’t look like the edges were chewed off by a hungry badger.P1180354 You can see the narrow and shortened straps and the modesty section. Every bead and sequin and pearl along the neckline front to the back was hand sewn/secured as they were all very loose and dangling.

The final 12 buttons were re-attached and now all I need is the bride to arrive the day after Thanksgiving for her final try-on. This lovely heavily-beaded dress will be stuffed into a suitcase for the long trip and hopefully steamed before the ceremony.12-final-back

Before I leave you, I want to say I bought myself a gorgeous cashmere scarf this week from a site that was set up by American Air Force servicemen to help Afghanistan women be more independent. If you have a chance please click on this link for some real affordable beauties! www.flyingscarfs.com

Happy Thanksgiving!

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SEW BAD Saturday #4

Meet Stephanie, while her fascinating blog contains travel photos, artwork and sewing, she felt compelled to share her latest creation with us. I will just include everything she said to me:

Hi Mrs. Mole,
I have an entry for your Sew Bad column, inspired after seeing Kate of Fabrickated’s version a few weeks ago. I’m not the most experienced seamstress so I don’t know if this would be of interest to your readership. Something I find frustrating about blogs is that people are generally “nice.” I’m not suggesting that people should be mean, but I like a debate and an honest opinion, as I’d like to learn how to sew properly and don’t have any in-person guidance. I think I can trust your readers to provide sincere feedback. (I write a journal/blog here: http://myvintageinspiration.wordpress.com , although I write about things other than sewing for the most part.)

IMG_5519 (1024x683)



Why did you pick this pattern?

I can’t remember! Knowing me, I probably liked the floral fabric in the picture on the pattern envelope. I also had not made a shirt yet at that point and so didn’t understand that this shirt does not have a collar stand. Oh, I remember – I was thinking of making the shirt dress version, to wear belted, although I decided to try the shirt version first to get the hang of the pleats. I am also a big fan of vintage patterns generally, especially pre-1970, although as a relatively inexperienced seamstress I am not yet the best judge of whether a vintage pattern will produce a garment that can be easily worn as a contemporary style.

IMG_5504 (533x800)

What size did you think you were according to their envelope numbers?

The pattern is a size 12, bust 32, which is what I consider to be my base size, based on my shoulder size and upper bust measurement.


What size did you cut and did you alter before cutting?
Same. I think I did narrow the bust darts a bit out of a fear that they would be too pointy. I could definitely have moved the darts down on the finished product, as my bust is not sufficiently pointy (or rather my undergarments are not) and sits lower than the dart! I recall measuring everything on the paper pattern and deciding that I would go ahead with the darts in the pattern’s position.

IMG_5507 (683x1024)IMG_5511 (683x1024)IMG_5512 (683x1024)

Did you encounter difficulties others would like to avoid?

This is not a difficult pattern. The instructions were clear and I had no problems putting it together. I actually quite enjoyed making the front pleats. I’ve always liked pleats.

One thing to note is that I know that the sleeves are not set in properly. There was too much sleeve ease when I got to that stage, so in the end I allowed them to pucker in the back. I’m not sure whether there was too much ease because I had originally cut the shirt fronts and back for the sleeveless version of the garment and had to cut some of the armscye out once the shirt was sewn together and I realized my mistake. I could probably have taken the sleeves out and hacked away at the underarm a little bit to make the sleeves fit, but by that point I was sure that this was not going to be a shirt worn as is. I don’t like the length or the cuffed look of the sleeves. The shirt might be nicer if I take the sleeves off and turn it into a sleeveless version – a project for next summer.

IMG_5508 (683x1024)

Is there anything in the photos we cannot see that you wanted us to know about?

As I mentioned above, there is no collar stand. I don’t like a collar with facing, as it turns out. It feels a bit flat to me and doesn’t open out as I would like.

Is this garment wearable with tweaking or not?

As I noted above, I think I might wear it if I were to shorten or remove the sleeves, although the bust darts kind of bother me. I’m mostly thinking of it as an “experience” garment and if I make the shirt again I’ll make a sleeveless one in a prettier fabric and with lower bust darts.

Thumbs up or thumbs down on buying this? Worth the effort?

I haven’t tried making the pants part of this pattern yet, which might also suit me, so I can’t dismiss that part of the pattern. As for the shirt and the shirt dress, I wonder if with some tweaks to modernize a bit and a nice fabric they could be attractive summer casual wear items. That said, I don’t think this is a spectacularly interesting pattern. I am excited to receive comments from your readership.IMG_5510 (683x1024)

Do you want to make any suggestions on how to “make it work” or is it beyond that?

As I noted above, the shirt suffers from my poor fitting and sleeve sewing. I also think the cotton voile that I chose is not the greatest pick for this style, especially in Pepto Bismol pink. I don’t know what I was thinking. The button placement also makes it look dowdier than it has to be. Oh and oops – I did reverse the button placement to the wrong placket, but that doesn’t bother me. Improving each of the above, however, would probably improve the style.

I suppose in summation I would say that with the sleeves that length and with their cuffs, it looks to me like a uniform for cleaning or for working in a cafeteria, or possibly bowling, which are all fine activities, but not what I was aiming for on this occasion. I think I was thinking something a bit more Jennifer Grey in Dirty Dancing, perhaps as she is learning to dance on a log in the forest with Patrick Swayze…as one does! In other words, the final modification that I would make would be to go sleeveless or shorten the sleeves.

Any thoughts from your readers would be welcome, as would suggestions of alternate patterns.

Please direct your comments to Stephanie so she can make this pattern work for her. Thank you, Stephanie for sharing and being the guinea pig for this post. The SEW BAD Saturday spot is always open for new talent and submissions!

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Nancy Returns

Yes, it is the final fitting of the jacket muslin Butterick 6106 after all the paper work and pinning and folding and taping and measuring ….TA DA!


You will see a few additions like 1/2 inch armscye darts to compensate for the 1 inch gingham patch and the front panels lie flatter now…the pouch on the left front is almost gone. The sleeve still need more cap height and the neck edge is still too wide.

2-right-side We will shorten the top neck edge by 1 inch, take in the center back and let out the side back seams at the hip area. Also a swayback tuck will be added in later photos and on paper.3-back The gingham patch will be widened by 1/2 inch so the yoke area relaxes down.4-left-side You can see the left front panel needs more fabric folded out to lie flatter.8-final-pin-out Here it is pinned out like a huge dart and this will be transferred to paper in later photos. The total excess fabric is 2.5 inches at the hem narrowing to nothing at the top.

5-left-sleeve As far as the sleeves, I have re-pinned the blue (second) gingham sleeve to make the horizontal bicep line parallel with the floor. The red shoulder seamline will be shown in the paper alterations.7-dart Here you can see that the dart needs to be re-angled to point to the bust point.


Let’s transfer the left front folds to paper,

9-first-line  first make the vertical line,10-fold-lines then draw in the actual fold lines from the muslin, fold out the excess and pin or tape down. This alteration makes the 2 middle and lower strips become more curved and actually more interesting.11-folded

12-back The back will get the extra 1/2 inch added to the upper patch, the swayback is folded out and pinned down (1.2 inch total to nothing at the side seam) and the extra 1/2 inch added in the hip area.

How about the sleeves? So glad you asked…I have measured the front armhole and back armhole and they measure 11.75 inches (front) and 12.50 (back) then the sleeve with the added cap height measures 12 inches (front) and 13 inches (back). We have 1/4 to ease in the front and 1/2 inch to ease in the back. I think for a jacket this will be acceptable and the fabric is a linen/cotton blend that will work well. You can see that the second gingham sleeve had the added portion that I have shown before. If I had not added it, we would have run out of seam allowance for the muslin fitting. This way I know how much extra was needed. Again I use the CLTL technique…cut large, trim later…it’s only fabric.13-sleeve-cap


Add tissue paper, re-trace seam and cutting lines and measure and record.


The jacket fabric will need some time to talk to me and tell me what motifs…flowers, buildings, words etc will want to go where to look the best on Nancy. She bought 4 yards of this 60 inch wide material and said that with the leftover fabric I could make myself a matching jacket and we could go out to lunch together…ahhh…maybe not! Lunch OK…matchy matchy…nope!


The fabric is washed and dried and ready for cutting but I still have more brides to finish!

How about this:     7-5-point-bustle A bustle that requires 2 more points than in the photo for a total of 7 points just to get it off the floor. So much fabric and weight will really be hard to dance in and maneuver but the brides seem to need these huge trains to be happy…go figure.

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