This afternoon I realized that, originally, I cut most of the pattern piece armholes incorrectly (an extension of what I discuss in the bottom portion of this post?). In a bizarrely consistent manner, on the armscye curves, I cut all of the wrong-size, mini-dotted lines (like lots of periods strung together). On the main pieces, in general, I cut the correct line for a size 6 (a similar - but different - 3 mini-dots and a dash). I don't know what on earth my brain was thinking but it was thinking in a purposeful, if crazy, way.
I'm still reviewing all of the pieces and trying to figure out which fucking tile goes with which spot on which piece so that I can print out new pieces, as necessary. At this point, I've probably cut the pattern twice in bits and pieces. This pdf pattern-idea, where you print, tape and cut 8.5 x 11 paper is extremely irritating. If only the pieces had page numbers on them, at least I would know which one to cut again. Working piecemeal, and using reference numbers that correlate with partial pattern pieces over multiple pieces of paper, is beyond horrible.
I suppose I should feel fortunate that the need to recut and tape parts of most of the pattern pieces isn't germane to the muslin (see below) cuz I fixed sizing of those pieces last week and put them together over the past few days. The finished product is WHACK as far as sleeve insertion goes. I do think that the easing method Gertie uses in her course (it involves a 1x12 inch piece of self fabric cut on the bias) will help with this. What will also help is either a) lowering the side front piece on each side slightly (.25") and / or b) reshaping the front armscye curve by cutting it down about .5". Option a) will mean that the marking lines no longer align and option b) seems weird - given that I've recut the relevant armscye curves so I know I'm working with the pattern-specified angles. I've decided to stop caring.
I don't seem to be able to fix this by getting the pattern to conform - and, trust me, I've worked constantly over hours and hours. I don't know why, despite following all the rules to a T, I've got a good inch of extra fabric between the top of the sleeve cap to the tip of the front piece. When I made this muslin I eased the sleeves using two rows of basting stitches. It wasn't optimal. I also - in willy nilly ways, did a mishmash of options a) and b) above. It taught me some things, but the muslin shoulder area is a bit of a wreck.
All of this is a preamble to some photos.
Here you can see the first muslin, with weird sleeves - but I haven't trimmed the armhole seam allowances and the pattern, per usual, is too long for my torso:
See the puffball of fabric above the waist in the shots above?
So I pinned out an inch of fabric above the waist, but below the armholes, on all of the pieces. Note: The photo below shows this done in an ad hoc manner. After I looked at these pics, I went back and repinned to ensure that the shortening was even from the bottom of the jacket. The pinning on the front of the jacket moved down so that is in line with the pin height at the back.
Now I'm trying to figure out whether or not I need to do an FBA. The front pieces close at least 2 inches over one another, but there is slightly less room as the jacket moves towards the lapels (right where the boobs are). Of course, this fabric has less than no give. My fashion fabric does have a tiny bit of width stretch. Tomorrow, I intend to release the princess seams at the bust to see what happens. If, when the seams are cut, the jacket seems to hang better, I will consider the FBA necessary and will make the alteration in the required size.
One other thing: This has no shoulder pads and I don't think I'm going to use them. I may use sleeve heads, if the bias strip and seam allowances at the shoulder don't give the garment enough shoulder structure, but I'm not looking for height in the shoulders - just definition. When I put the shoulder pads into the shoulder area, this jacket starts to look clown like on my frame, which natch, is not appealing.
Of course, I'm looking for all of your feedback. Thoughts or feelings about the fit here? Try not to focus too much on the sleeve insertion. It's a dog's breakfast. Of course, if you have some theories about why the front sleeve is too long for the armholes, I'm glad to hear about it.
Update at a ridiculously late hour: I couldn't leave it be so I've made the following adjustments (or partial adjustments) since writing this:
- Lengthened the bottoms of each piece by 5/8" except the front pieces which I lengthened by an inch (tapering to nothing at the centre front sides so as not to impinge on the width of the final pieces. I did this cuz, once I turn up the hems, I'm concerned the jacket will be too short - having removed an inch of length above the waist. Pretty funny alteration, no? Taking out length in one spot only to add it back in another. This way, though, I'm removing the bulk where I'm short.
- Opened the princess seams at the full bust - I need an FBA of 2.5 inches (1.25" on each side). Now I've gotta figure out how to do the princess seam FBA. Fortunately there are some great tutorials out there - and I've got Fit For Real People and I've got the Palmer Pletch DVD on fitting for a full bust. I think I should be able to get it done.
- Removed the sleeves and now I see how well the bodice fits without them. Fortunately Sunni has provided this great link on the subject of altering a sleeve cap to fit the armhole from Casey's blog. I do remember reading this and, somewhere in my mind, I have remembered it. I intend to review the sleeve cap against the bodice pieces at the armhole to ensure the length and shape align.