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