|Remember - this is a work in progress AND the dress form is not of the same dimensions as me... Note: The shoulder pads are inserted.|
I don't know why I resisted this for so long. It's not hard and it freakin' works! Finally, there's no puff at the armsyce seam on the front bodice and the slope of fabric that lies over the bust is flat. And, theoretically, I should have an increased range of motion at the shoulder joint. Maybe I'll even be able to raise my arms over my head! :-)
Apropos of that, fitted jackets aren't the garment known for full range of arm motion. But maximizing motion is important.
FYI, it's a 1.25" dart that I angled towards the full bust (where the plus sign is diagonally to the right) but stops quite short of it because I don't want to overemphasize the apex. Plus, that is its natural end.
You can see that I've had to remove still more fabric at the waist, about another 0.5" at each side seam.
The back is looking pretty good, IMO. I still have to press the centre back seam (I took another .5 inches out of it at some point and didn't press). It's quite hard to see - esp. as the shoulders on this form are NOTHING like mine, but on the left side I have taken an extra .25" out of the back armsyce (brought the back seam of the armscye in line with my own). I don't know if I'm going to go with the left-side alterations or stick with the earlier-iteration right-side.
The pattern was drafted with no centre back seam but S smartly suggested that I add one. If you are curvy, I feel that a centre back seam is de rigeur. It gives you another seam to fool around with, which is very useful.
Time was, I thought seams were kind of remedial. Crazy, I realize. I thought the whole idea was to make as few seams as possible because that's how you show the fabric off to its best advantage. What I've learned over the years is that seams are totally unobserved by the average viewer. People notice good fit, not the mechanism used to achieve it.
I suppose it's the subject of another post, but I really have improved as a sewist via the 8000 muslins I've made recently. It's tricky, to put it mildly, to ease the princess seams (front to side front and back to side back) when you're dealing with a fairly intense curve. I've done it so many times lately that, at this point, I intuitively know where and when to clip the seam allowances. I've also determined that it's truly necessary to sew (slowly) over the pins on those seams (bad practice though it might be) because removing them as you come upon them, but before you sew, completely skews the fabric.
I loathe making muslin after muslin but I guess, even here, there's a silver lining. Don't misunderstand. I'm SO done with this phase of the project, even as I (miserably) keep on going. I don't know where I find the tenacity. But - to understate things excessively - I'd really hate to make a suit that just doesn't fit.