Sunday, September 15, 2013

Fall For Cotton: Butterick 7238 muslin

I finally got myself in gear and put together the muslin for my Fall For Cotton dress. As a reminder, this is the plan...
I'm making the view on the far right, with the vintage ladies print as the main fabric and a solid black cotton for the contrast. I traced and tissue fit the pattern, and made a 1/2 inch FBA, which I rotated into the gathered section, and shortened the back bodice about an inch. Then I made a bodice muslin. (Warning: unflattering muslin pictures ahead.)
Here's how the bodice fits. There is basically zero ease at the bust, which I'm OK with, but the bodice is all bunchy and looks too long below the bust. It looks the same in back, so I was thinking I'd need to shorten the bodice all around. At this point, something told me I should attach the skirt and see what happens. Generally I don't bother checking the fit of a full, gathered skirt, but I'm glad I did this time.
The weight of the skirt pulls the bunchyness out of the bodice completely and I am really thrilled with the fit as it is! If I had shortened the bodice, I think I would have felt it was too short. I'm really glad I stuck that skirt on there! It made a big difference!
I think that wrinkle on my left is just me standing weird. I really like the fit in back as well. I can't believe how little altering this dress needed to be pretty nearly perfect. Woo-hoo!! On to the fashion fabric!

12 comments:

  1. This is gonna look sooooo cute when it's made up. Can't wait to see it. And Wooo Hoo for not accidentally shortening the bodice.

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  2. I've discovered the skirts making a huge difference on my mockups of vintage patterns as well - I did the same thing the first time and tried to skip it but my gut told me not to. Yay for good sewing instincts!

    Your muslin looks great! That is always so satisfying because mockups are often ugly even if they fit correctly.

    I can't wait to see it in the fabric you picked! =)

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  3. Good call on attaching the skirt muslin. I wonder if your left shoulder might be a bit lower than your right causing the wrinkling or if it was just the way you are standing? It's just an observation.

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    1. Oh! I think you're on to something there! I'm going to try a little shoulder pad on that side and see if it helps. Thanks!!

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  4. I love the neckline of this dress!! It's looking really nice!

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  5. Oh! Finally! A peak at your sewing room. I can't wait to see this beauty made up!

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  6. This looks beautiful on you. May I ask you a question? Do you always make a muslin version of the garment before you make the real garment? I have never made a garment but my 15yo daughter wants to start learning to sew her own garments. So we are starting a journey of learning. Thank you for your blog and response if you can.

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    1. That's wonderful! 15 is a perfect age to start garment sewing. She's young enough to be fearless, and she probably doesn't have a lot of fit challenges.

      I don't muslin every single garment I sew, but I do test check every new pattern in some way before I cut. Some patterns I measure flat, if they're simple and basic with few pieces. For almost every garment, I do test the garment tissue by pinning or sewing it together to make sure it generally fits in all of the areas I typically need to alter. There is a wonderful book (you may have heard of it) that I highly recommend to anyone who want to make garments that fit well. It is Palmer/Alto's Fit For Real People. It's a pretty common sewing book, so many libraries have it. It goes through the process of fitting the pattern to your body and how to alter the pattern to fit. It can get a little detailed, but the methods become second nature with practice. The book only discusses the tissue fitting method, which I always use, but since fabric and paper look different, if the garment is really closely fitted, or I feel I can't get a good enough approximation with the tissue for some reason, I then make a muslin, after I make the alterations that I needed in the tissue fitting stage. For this dress, the bodice has a pretty close fit, and I wanted to make sure it was perfect before I cut. The construction order for this dress is a little unusual too, so the muslin was my chance to practice before I tried with my nice fabric. The fabric sometimes makes a difference, too. If my fabric was particularly expensive, or I can't replace it if I mess up, I'll make a muslin to be sure I don't ruin my good fabric. Every seamstress has a different muslin philosophy though, and I think it's something that evolves with time. I never used to make muslins, but I messed up enough nice fabric that I make them more often now, but some seamstresses make one with every garment. I think it just has to do with your comfort level. When you feel ready, go for it!

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  7. So looking forward to seeing this all done, that fabric is beyond delightful and the pattern has such nifty details! Thanks for posting about adding the skirt to the muslin, I too tend to just muslin bodices and I think I may now know the reason they are occasionally a tad too short in the waist. I always figured it was a waste to add the skirt as well, but I won't think that so much now! The fit of this looks really good, only I can tell that it's pulling a little across the bust and drawing too much of my attention there. If it were me I'd add just a little bit of ease in there. Otherwise, it looks pretty perfect!

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  8. Cool bodice design! I would suggest just a little more ease in the bust, maybe just 1/4-1/2". I think you'll appreciate it if you're ever carrying something or have to pick something up quickly. That said, I think the fit is incredible for a first muslin and that pattern on you is adorable!

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  9. I love the neckline details. I can't wait to see this dress finished!

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