To start the New Year I was going to share some awesome free vintage patterns from my collection and other places around the internet–which by the way I am still going to do.
But, then I thought about the big content splash around the web in-terms of relevant content having to do with improving your dressmaking skills with respect to measuring, alterations and pattern grading of vintage sewing patterns. These sites use vintage techniques when possible–I have gone through many sewing books dating back to the late 1800’s some things are the same now as it was then, what may be different; but the tools needed for many techniques are being refined.
They’ve been in our sewing books all along–but we were not paying attention –didn’t have time, so we stopped finishing seams except with the standard manufactured serger and we’re enjoying getting back to the basic–the quality..
Thinking about what I just wrote–I want couture quality in my sewing that I make for myself and others and on the way there
Remember, vintage techniques used quality finishings
While I consider myself a skillful dressmaker, it’s definitely an area that I find the most interesting and challenging and to fine tune my skills, I sort out blogs that you may or may not know about.
I also have to give credit to Pinterest which has led me to some great resources and Chrome’s translation extensions open the door worldwide sources.
Now while I love sewing up a true vintage treasure and as you know I sell them too, I’ve discovered a gap in the market place–a niche.
So the question is, what if you could buy the vintage pattern of you wanted in the size you needed, requiring minimal alterations? What would it be?
So let’s start there, look at these really great vintage summer designs, I want to know which one you like the best. Taking the poll and commenting — I want to thank you in advance, its appreciated.
When we’re thinking about vintage sizing and wondering why 50’s and 60’s models looked so slim and trim in our personal collections of vintage patterns and magazines–let us not forget–women of that era worn girdles and corsets to make their bodies fit the shape of many styles.
As a matter of fact, I can remember being told to wear a girdle as a girl and on occasion today I still wear firm under-garments to make sure that my lumps and bumps are inc check.
I can’t remember the last time I even wore a pair of pantyhose–I wear stocking with garters and garter belts or the ones with the lace bands.
Now you might ask how does that feel in the summer–well be sure to select your under-garments based on materials suitable for the season. Like cotton bra’s and slips for instance.
Enough rambling checkout this article from Jennifer Valentine | The Body Beautiful, she takes on the subject with an eloquence that I find interesting.
Next and most important step as you know is your body measurements–this is not a task you can do alone and have accurate measurements, I believe as the next blog author that fitting problems can be eliminated before the begin by doing this first step correctly.
The next post by Marina of Frabjous Couture is just what the doctor ordered, Hip Circumference and Fit for the figure with a tummy/belly or handle-bars or other mid-section imperfections, this is the first of a series of articles on the subject and she leaves us with some homework.
Next we’ll explore a couple of blog contributor’s with something to say about the Bust Adjustment and essential for almost everyone –wait let me just say, ready-made patterns just like shoes come in an average size the standard B cup, well a lot of women either have bust that are slimmer or fuller so how do you make a great fitting bodice.
Since bust adjustments are the most commonly asked question, I’ll devote several different resources to the subject.
Small Bust Adjustments
First we’re going to tackle Small Bust Adjustments which is more difficult to find articles about the subject, but Shannon has taken on the subject with a blog post titled “My Cup Does Not Runneth Over“, take a read if you need to adjust down instead of up.
As you’ll see with this next post on Slapdash Sewist, she takes an approach that most of us use, and that is working at the process until we get the bodice or top to fit the way we want it to. But her pictures are great and easy to follow when it comes to making bust adjustments for small bust sizes.
Everybody’s familiar with Gertie, well she does a “Small Bust Adjustment Tutorial” for a pattern from her book “Gerties New Book for Better Sewing” and Colette Patterns, I think you’ll find it most useful.
For Us Full Busted Ladies With C, D, E, F and G Cups
In this next post from Sincerely Yours, I really like the point that Kate makes about the “Full Bust Adjustment” as a milestone event in the sewing life of any heavy chested woman. The book she recommends is Palmer/Pletsch Fit for Real People an excellent resource for your sewing library.
Back in the day I was 5’/7.5″, the perfect size 12 for my life before age 40, then a perfect size 14 after until my early 50’s. Now in my late 50’s I find that my hips are still a 44″ but my protruding stomach is a nightmare caused by fibroid tumors, gallstones and now ulcers. This next resources would have been a great resource for me.
Another FBA resource is courtesy of Pink Chalk Studios, in her post she shares her experience from a fitting class at Pacific Fabrics in Bremerton, WA learning the Palmer/Pletsch method of fitting for unique shapes. I wanted to visit that Pacific Fabrics in Bremwnton and didn’t have a chance.
Bra fittings were an annual event during my adolescents, and I continue that tradition today with my daughter and grandaughter. By the way my granddaughter graduates from High School this June, anyway, you will know your true size.
Finally Sew LA Blog, gives a great run-down on Full Bust Adjustment techniques with measurements and all.
Enjoy these Fitting Tutorials and Resources.
Since we’re on the theme of vintage dressmaking–knits were on the rage in the forties and fifties and are still one of the most expensive custom couture fashions today, enjoy these beauties and share an outfit when you knit or crochet one of the patterns. Download this “Free Vintage Pattern eBooks” and enjoy your weekend.