Wednesday, February 27, 2013

THANK YOU Ruth ! ! ! ! !

Last night, I went through my closet and tried on some skirts and pants that I'd been avoiding because they were too tight and I'm happy to report that they fit again including a smaller pair of jeans. Since mid January, I've lost 7.2 pounds and gained muscle from running. I'm still enjoying it which I find strange but wonderful. 

Did you read the articles that ParisGrrl linked to on fitting RTW jeans? They were interesting and well done with really useful illustrations. One big take-away for me was that all the women had wrinkles of some kind under the butt. Apparently - and confirmed by Debbie's comment yesterday - it's normal and necessary and something for me to get over. With that in mind, a pair of well fitted, high quality, RTW jeans could do the job and I could focus on sewing other garments. It's not that I can't sew jeans. I can. But - if I can find ones that fit and flatter - my time might be better invested elsewhere like with...




... fun blouses. A search for blouses turned up a lot of knit tops, a finding that corresponded with the lack of women wearing blouses this past weekend. I wanted to check collar widths and design details and liked the look of this blouse from workchic.com.

A friend and I are leaving early tomorrow morning to go to SewExpo in Puyallup, Washington, USA. I'm looking forward to Marcy Tilton's and Katherine Tilton's talk and - if we have time - to some snoop shopping but only after fabric shopping. Marcy wrote in her last newsletter that they are bringing LOTS of fabric and she has incredibly yummy fabric. Some might be coming home with me.

Ruth wrote - If I were you, the first adjustment I would make would be a sloping shoulder adjustment. Then make the others. It's a lot less fiddly than the narrow back adjustment and would solve that excess fabric problem immediately.

In the eighties, I wore shoulder pads but then "everyone" wore shoulder pads in the eighties. They were in style. While I've always known my shoulders are narrow, I've never once thought of myself as having sloping shoulders possibly because my entire shoulder is never visible since I've had long hair worn down most of my life. When Ruth wrote to try the sloping shoulder adjustment first my immediate reaction was I tried that as part of the narrow back adjustment but then I thought about what she really said. She had suggested to make the shoulder adjustment FIRST and then the others. I hadn't tried that and I know that which adjustments you make in which order makes a tremendous difference so... I tried it... with pins.




Above is the blue muslin made with a narrow shoulder adjustment merged into the existing armhole. Below is the same muslin with a 1/2" tuck pinned at the shoulder tapered to the neck. What a tremendous difference AND the bonus of making these two alterations this way is that I can cut out the front and back pieces as drafted but not the sleeve piece and then sew the front and back sections together before fitting the angle of the shoulder seam. Once that's determined, I can adjust the pattern's sleeve cap to accommodate, cut out the sleeves, and continue sewing. The before cutting adjustments would be minimal and simple - mainly width and length.




THANK YOU Ruth ! ! ! This is SO SO SO easy compared to all the pattern altering gyrations I've been doing for the past several years. If you lived anywhere near me, you'd get a great big HUG and I'd be treating you to lunch with wine and dessert and a happy celebration for all the time and effort and energy and frustration you have saved me and the increased joy of sewing you have gifted me with. You have no idea - or maybe you do - how incredibly thankful I am to have a solution that could work this easily. I still need to test it with a "real" garment, no pins, but it looks like it will work. I am beyond thrilled especially because - if true - and I believe it is - doing this alteration this way will make every garment in my future so much more doable. I am tap dancing happy.

Today I have a list of things to do plus packing and I really want to test the sloping shoulder theory which means sewing beats cleaning. If I have time, I have two postings in mind to write for Thursday and Friday and will schedule them to auto post. If you see them, I had time. If not, I didn't. I won't be able to respond to any comments until Sunday. I'm travelling wireless - a hard copy book, a journal, my knitting, no computer.

Talk soon - Myrna

Grateful - Ruth and sloping shoulder adjustments

19 comments:

  1. Hooray for easy adjustments! And, for knowledgeable sewing buddies! I hope you have a great time at the sewing expo. You'll have to do a show and tell posting when you get back home!

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    1. I'm definitely excited about how easy this alteration would be. I don't know Ruth other than that she reads my blog and is part of the on-line sewing community - the wonderful, helpful, encouraging, aren't we lucky to have each other on-line sewing community. It would be fun if she actually lived near me.

      I am packing my camera. I hear SewExpo is quite amazing so hopefully there's lots to share when I get home.

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  2. Glad the shoulder adjustment worked so well. This is one that Peggy Sagers has shown on her free webcasts several times and I'm always amazed at that that one adjustment can accomplish. Enjoy your trip; wish I could go to Washington, too. Maybe one of these days. It's a "fur piece" from Texas.

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    1. It goes to show that I need to be more open minded than I thought I was about possibilities. Because I didn't think that I had sloping shoulders I've never considered this alteration and yet - in retrospect - there are several things I've attempted to do that pointed to the possibility PLUS - thinking back - I realize that when I had my fitting shell fitted, we didn't include the sleeves which I've since learned is a critical element to include. A little late but still good learning and not too late. Moving on now.

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  3. Congrats on the fitting. Amazing how simplest is best in so many things.

    I'm heading to sew expo too--an annual trek for me. It is great to see Marcy's fabrics in person--and I always stop to admire the Japanese fabrics at Kasuri's booth. The shows are inspiring, to say nothing of a welcome chance to sit down! Btw, it's worth it to pack a bit of lunch food since fairground food is--typical fairground food.

    Elle

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    1. I'm so excited to have such a simple and manageable answer. Today has been busy so I haven't had time to test the idea. It'll tickle all weekend I'm sure.

      How fun that you're going to Sew Expo too. Maybe you'll see me and say hi. Thanks for the advice on food. Not sure how that'll work since we can't pack food across the border but I'll keep it in mind.

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  4. Blogs sure are awesome information sharing resources! Yay!

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    1. Definitely. I love the way they connect us. I was envious of the Toronto meet-up. If it hadn't been so expensive to fly across the country, I'd have been there.

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    2. Hopefully, next time, you'll be able to find a really good deal on a ticket!

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    3. YES - there were a couple vendors at the Puyallup Sew Expo that were from Toronto. One where I had to back away from the fabric it was so expensive. Obviously it's worth it for them to travel this far BUT... obviously there are yummy things for me to see and do in Toronto - LOL.

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  5. Glad to hear you found an easy solution to your excess shoulder fabric problem. Have a blast at Puyallup!

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    1. I was just reading the Fast Fit about sloping shoulders. The first paragraph says... A dead giveaway for sloping shoulders is the appearance of diagonal wrinkles near the armholes... Somehow that made me think front armhole not back but it doesn't differentiate and of course now, after the fact, I see that those front wrinkles are not a narrow chest. Wish I'd clued in sooner. So thankful Ruth spoke up. I'll let you know how Puyallup goes. Should be fun.

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  6. Enjoy your trip and bring home lots of nice things to sew with.

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    1. Thanks. I will. I plan to look for a souvenier piece of fabric - something I couldn't normally afford - and for a possible deal on an iron since mine just packed it in.

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  7. Have a great time, Myrna - I look forward to reading all about it.

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    1. And what a difference the sloping shoulder adjustment makes!

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    2. A tremendous difference. And thank you - I will have a good time and tell you all about it.

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  8. It did that for me too, Myrna! I was so glad when I found that alteration. And it makes you looks taller and slimmer and more streamlined straight away, doesn't it? And I didn't think I had sloping shoulders either because of course my actual collar bone doesn't slope. My son says I have "great lats"!

    Anyway, I won't waffle on, but yes, it's a great alteration.

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    1. It's amazing. I'm so totally thrilled. I'd cut out a blouse just before I left on my trip and thought about it constantly while I was gone. Can't wait to see how it works. Thanks again for sharing.

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Thanks for commenting. I appreciate the feedback and the creative conversation.