Thursday, March 28, 2013

Having a fit....

Two posts in two days!!  I have been silent lately.  Usually silence means I can't think of anything to write about.  But this time around the fact is that I have been pretty productive and haven't been able to find the time to post about everything.  So I'll try to take it one bite at a time.

This bite will be about fit.  When spring starts threatening to appear, I tend to get frustrated about the way clothes fit.  I suspect it has a lot to do with shedding winter layers and the fact that warm weather clothes really show the lack of fit in garment lines.  This year I decided to be pro-active and signed up to take a sloper class at Haberman's.  So every Monday morning for the past 3 weeks, and the coming 5 weeks, I drive over to Royal Oak and spend 3 hours with 8 other classmates working on my sloper. 
This is my homework for Monday.  We are starting on the sleeve pattern. 

It has been a very enlightening experience.  For years I've been unhappy with the way most commercial jackets fit me.  The front looks fine, but when I look at the back in the mirror there are these folds of fabric hanging down from my shoulder blades.  The commercial jackets that fit me best have princess seams plus waistline darts in the back.  I always thought it was because I have broad shoulders.....NOT!  It turns out that I have a narrow back.  Who knew?!  I'd never even heard that someone could have a narrow back until last week.  This week Gwen, the instructor, helped me take out the 1 5/8" from the back bodice (multiply that by 2 for what had to come out of the whole back!)
 So this is my chopped up back pattern.  Gwen tells me that we will have to work out the back armhole in the muslin.  Stay tuned.

My long term objective is to weave yardage and make some vests and jackets that fit well.  (You'll have to stay tuned even longer for that!)

Who knows when the "narrow back" situation has presented itself.  I suspect that it has something to do with years of yoga ("slide your shoulder blades down your back and lift your chest"...an oft heard yoga cue)  All of the other pattern alterations I can attribute to time....and gravity.  But the fact that so many of our clothes are knits certainly make it possible to ignore the problem.  Even so knits look better if they fit well too, hence this new addition (edition?) to my library:


I have a lot of knitting books (check my library on Ravelry to verify) and several how to design knitwear books.  I love Montse Stanley and Deborah Newton's works on this topic.  But this is the first book I've seen for hand knitters that thoroughly covers the topic of drafting a knitting pattern to fit and flatter.  Melissa Leapman has a new book titled Knitting the Perfect Fit that is nice, but not nearly as comprehensive as Sally's new book.

Armed with my new information about my fit issues, a sloper pattern, and the information from Sally's book I should be able to create a new wardrobe for the top half of myself!

I'm not making any commitments to take the pants fitting class......yet.  (I'm pretty sure that the narrow back issue does not extend below the waist...ahem.)

1 comment:

  1. Wow, you're a veritable blogging whirlwind! I'm so envious of both your sloper class and proximity to Haberman's. I have ordered from them on line a few times and it sure look likes a super fabric store. Once you have a well fitting sloper the sewing world so to speak, is your oyster! At least when it comes to toppers.

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