I spent a couple of hours on the weekend (all the time in the universe I seem to have these days) making another muslin. A real muslin. Like the kind that only includes the bodice. The kind where you accidentally sew on seam inside out but it doesn't matter cuz you're just going for fit and you're going to rip out that seam anyway. I didn't want to take this route, but I knew in my gut it was the smart way to proceed. In the final analysis, I'm really glad I listened to my intuitive (if irritating) self, cuz the fit wasn't there.
Mind you, it was close.
The only thing I had to fix this go around was an excess length of fabric at the under bust. There was a section of about 3 vertical inches that was way too large. I think I shaved an inch of width off the under bust seam, in total, evenly from both sides of the "princess" seam. I know I just wrote about the need for me to remove fabric from the front piece only, but I've have altered this many times and added and removed fabric as many times as there are muslins. Furthermore, this seam is an inverse princess seam. My goal, in the end, was to keep the seam aligned with the bust. My fix does that.
The crazy thing about this pattern, as evidenced by photo (below), is that - given my short waist and proportionately projected bust - there are only about 2 inches of vertical ground between bust apex and the high-natural waist seam aka the base of the top (where the peplum begins):
|The centre top piece is the side front bodice. The little bump out is the bust apex. Is that not the weirdest thing?|
Weird fact: This 5-piece, cut-on sleeve top is surprisingly tricky to alter.
But let's get back to confidence. The Hepworth Dress, which mysteriously taught me how to alter a standard-issue armscye princess seam to fit my body well, has (perhaps less mysteriously) also taught me lots about how I need to view bust fitting on all closely fitted woven garments.
OK, I'm not going for hubris here. I have much to learn about the fitted woven bodice as it pertains to my specific body, but I have made many strides of late.
Here's my point - and I'm talking to my future self here: Keep on. Even when you meet seemingly-endless disaster, keep on. Even when your fingers hurt from picking out stitches (and you still have to throw the thing in the bin), keep on. When you're motivated by the gorgeous end product of someone else, use the impulse and keep on. When you go through 6 yards of muslin fabric and you have to wait till more arrives (be grateful for the reprieve and) keep on.
Right this minute, there's likely some element of sewing that completely eludes you. I empathize. But I am absolutely certain that, in the absence of utter tenacity, non of us will prevail.
(And feel free to remind me of this if my next version doesn't work.*)
*Should that occur, this thing is totally pyre fodder.