Sunday, August 1, 2010

Shout Out to the Experts: Gather Dress No. 3

Dear Fabulous Sewist Blog Friends:

You know this dress? I'm trying to figure out how to customize it to my curvy frame. It occurs that - especially if I choose to make it in a woven (which it's designed for) - I should probably give the chest a little bit more room.

If this were a regular bodice - or one with a regular sort of sleeve - I'd simply remove the sleeve and do an FBA. Of course, since it's got that crazy sleeve (see pattern below) (non-sewists who haven't run screaming from this post: the sleeve is the bulbous protrusion at the top left) I'm a little bit concerned:

Nonetheless, I think I'm still going to cut the sleeve off where that black vertical line is (below).

Then I'll do the FBA (which shouldn't affect the armhole, right?) and then I'll reattach the sleeve back on. Note: I don't intend to lengthen the sleeve because the part that the FBA impacts, as I understand it, is BELOW armhole. As such, it need not change dimension - or go through alterations along with the bodice - as part of the FBA. Experts, can you corroborate or tell me otherwise?

Also, will the extension of length on the bodice - produced by the FBA - have unforeseeable, which is to say "bad", implications for where the bodice attaches to the skirt part (the bottom section of pattern)?

Can I merely keep the curve and make the bodice only slightly longer? What will that mean for the part of the skirt that doesn't attach to the bodice (the part that will gather)? I don't think it will have implications (except to drop the waistline slightly) but maybe I'm wrong.

Any thoughts you can provide, any advice, would be so appreciated.

I'd prefer not to make this up entirely :-)

Love, K


  1. We should talk! I need to understand this flat pattern a bit more... is that long straight edge on the fold?

    Here is one important point to remember... anything you adjust creates an adjustment for where it will be attached. For example, if someone makes a waist smaller on a bodice (or vice versa), then the waist seam on the bottom piece has to have the same adjustment... basically the lengths pieces need to match or there will be excess fabric. So, if you take out or add to an armhole opening, then you need to add or subtract that same amount from the sleeve. Or if you lengthen a bodice, then you will want to shorten the skirt (from the waist) unless you are striving for a dropped waist look.

    Does that help?

  2. I was going to say "Ask Stacy" but I see she already answered! BTW, are you sponsoring her Fashion Week presentation yet? ;-)

  3. Stac: I've emailed you...

    WB: I just signed up and pledged. And tweeted this link. Thanks for telling me about Kick Starter.

  4. Well, Stacy said anything I was going to say far more intelligently. I'm still trying to wrap my head around the pattern.