We have entered the Time of the Muslin.
With just three (I know, I know–what do I mean just three???) dresses left on my Fall-No-Wait-I-Mean-Fall-and-Winter sewing plan, with my New Look 6078 finally complete, and with my Beignet as far as I can get it at this point (it’s a long story. Oh, you really, really want to know? Well, when I borrowed the machine I’m using, I foolishly declined to bring along the buttonhole foot because I knew mine would fit. And mine does fit. But for some reason, none of the buttonholes I’ve practiced with would turn out. The first side would be perfectly fine, but the second would just be a skinny little squiggle and then the needle would get stuck doing a reinforcement stitch over and over at the top. So now I have to wait until I get my machine back–maybe sometime next week!! I hope I hope I hope!!). . . wait, what were we talking about??
So anyways, my fingers are itching for a new project. I decided to jump in and start my muslin for Simplicity 2444. I have made this dress before, but it was so long ago and I was in such a state of Not Knowing What I Was Doing that I thought it would be good to start from scratch. I tried on my first version and realized that the shoulders were too short. When I, with my mother’s help, measured the distance from the seam to where the seam should fall, I discovered that they were a full inch too short.
Which is craziness!
So, I read up on altering shoulders in The Perfect Fit and added (just to be on the safe side) 3/4″ to each shoulder and used a French curve to blend the seams on the armscye and felt awfully accomplished. And then I sewed up the muslin.
Guess how much too long the shoulders were. Just guess.
I also noticed that I was unable to move my arms very freely. I’m doing the 3/4 length sleeves and thought it was a good idea to include at least one in the muslin. When I raised my arms straight in front of me, the sleeves were way too tight on my upper arms and were pulling up on the bodice at the side seams. At rest, the sleeves have plenty of room for my arms, which are fairly skinny. Is the armscye too low? The Perfect Fit offered no wisdom on this point.
“Perfect” indeed, hmph!
I would share a picture of that first muslin, but I literally had to cut myself out of it. It was a tad smallish in the waist. And I sewed up the zipper seam. I don’t know what I was thinking. Oh, wait. I know. It was, “I really don’t want to fool with a zipper right now.”
For muslin #2, which is in progress, I removed all the extra I added to the shoulders and graded up just a tad around the waist. I also lowered the front bodice darts and added armscye darts as per usual.
I’m beginning to realize that this particular pattern is riddled with issues, i.e. front and back seams not matching and such. And I noticed this last time of tracing, that the center back bodice seam doesn’t run parallel with the grainline. Is that something that is commonly done and I just don’t know about it? I’m wondering because I noticed some extra fullness in the upper back. I was able to pinch about 1 3/4″ at the top. I’d already made my short waist and swayback adjustment. Is there such thing as having a short upper back? Is it possible that this is also causing the gaping at the front neckline?
I had the same issue with this dress and ended up redrawing the top of the back bodice and it worked perfectly. I’m just wondering if doing the same thing when I have sleeves is going to make the back too tight.
So many questions!!
When I went down to cut out my S2444 muslin, I went ahead and cut out muslins for Simplicity 1913 and Burda 7739. And now I’m going to sit here and watch Frasier and mark them all so that tomorrow morning when I’m ready to Accomplish Great Things, I’ll be able to dive right in.
Hmmm. . . such a dry post, sorry! But, it helps me to write everything down and attempt to think logically about what my next step should be.
Good luck with your weekend endeavors! What are you working on?
(And any wisdom you have to share about CB seams or tight sleeves would be muchly appreciated!)