This post has been in draft for some time. Seriously….weeks. Day to day life and family matters have been pretty hectic to say the least. In any case, FINALLY I have a toile that I can turn into a block with which to begin drafting some designs! Hurrah!! That aspect of things I will now have to put on hold until the new year, due to Christmas gift sewing. I’m guessing though that anyone who may be following these posts will be in the same position, so it seems to me that starting the drafting process fresh in January is the best option. So this will be the last Draftalong post until the New Year.
When I last posted, I had adapted my pattern to take out a big tuck as part 1 of a sway back alteration, but had yet to test the results on my final toile. Well, here it is….(I’m not quite sure why I look like I’m striking a body builder pose on the right,btw! Heurgh!!))
See the difference?! Excess fabric gone and the additional ease at the side seams is alowing it to fall comfortably over my hips. The image on the left shows the excess fabric pinned out in a horizontal tuck in the small of my back on the original toile, and the very slight snugness on my hips. The one on the right is the final toile, cut using the newly altered pattern . No more fabric pooling…….
Apart from the tuck itself, there were a couple of other elements to finalising my toile. In my previous post, I incorrectly assumed that I needn’t square off the hem after I had taken the tuck out of the pattern. I assumed the “distorted” hem was all part of the “optical illusion” to correct the sway back. Hmmmm. Not so apparently. I did indeed need to square off the hem from the CB to the side seam. You can see the distorting effect of the tuck on the hem in the left hand picture; and the “wedge” added on below the dotted line in the right hand picture….
In addition, I added a CB seam to this toile on the advice of my tutor. “Just in case” further alterations were needed. Good job too, because the tuck on it’s own wasn’t quite sufficient. In order to get the back to sit just right, I ended up taking out a tapered vertical “tuck” along the CB seam of the toile,to remove the last bit of excess fabric. It tapers to nothing at the neckline, with it’s widest point at the hem. Essentially, taking in the CB seam at an angle. Were I being truly conscientious or aiming for a totally accurate fitted toile, then the new CB seam would be curved inward at the small of my back. But I was happy to keep it simple and opted for a straight tapered CB seam as opposed to a curved one.
The overall shape of this toile is exactly what I’d envisaged as a basis for future designs. I will never want to make a top more fitted than this. It just wouldn’t suit my shape. So for me, a simple, semi fitted, boxy shape that I can add some design details to, and manipulate shape wise, is just perfect.
One final tweak I’ll make is to lengthen the bust darts. I shortened them a bit tooooo much on this toile, trying to avoid the pointy bust look. But where they are now, they’re not providing quite the right amount of fullness. (Ohhhhh, NIPPLES to it!) I’m pretty sure just lengthening them will sort out any remaining drag lines on the bust….
Sooo, here is my block. Traced onto card from my final pattern. Without seam allowances. Ready to start playing with designs in the New Year. Here’s a round up of the main adjustments I’ve made to my toile to get it to this point:
- Assessing the initial fit issues
- Moved the bust dart
- Enlarging the bust dart Pt 1
- Enlarging the bust dart Pt 2
- Sway Back Adjustment Part 1
- and finally this post….
I’ve been sketching out some ideas as well as perusing the ones in the book that got me started on this draftalong in the first place. (Epic journey that it has become! 32 posts so far! What planet was I on, thinking I could have this done and dusted withing a few weeks??!)
I fancy starting off with experimenting with collars (Peter Pan, Sailor?) and maybe some pintucks, pleats, gathers etc. How about you? What design details would you try first if you were drafting a pattern to your own design?