Friday, February 22, 2013

LC vs Sure-fit Designs

I did not want to put Louise's name in the title because I don't want this post to come up in a search.  It isn't really that her patterns are bad -- they are just like all the other patterns where I am concerned.  They don't fit MY body.

You will recall that I went to the class in Tulsa, and my project was Relax-A-Little.

That look is totally me, and so is the name of it.  I always dress casual and comfortable.  I'm not into collars, but that is because they never feel good on me.  They always cause some kind of issue. 

So here is Muslin #1 of Relax-A-Little:

Notice how the collar falls backward on me.  I'm not doing a thing but standing there.  I promise I didn't push it backwards on my neck.  Notice how the front is hiked up over the waist of my jeans.  It should cover that up.
Here is the back of the shirt which has a double-sided yoke on it.  That means the inside of the yoke shows the right side of the fabric and is totally finished at the seams.

The double layer yoke makes the yoke heavier than the front, and that causes the back to pull backward also -- I think.

The back looks fine except for the fact it is pulling down at my neck.

I HATE this didn't turn out because I LOVE this fabric.
And here is the REAL STORY in photo format!   I guess I could just say I WANTED my hem to resemble a ski slope.

I noticed that some of Louise's blouses pulled up in the front of her body also.  Blouses she made -- her pattern -- that she was wearing in class.  I, of course, being the student didn't say anything.  Louise did say several times that most of us OVER-fit our clothes.  I thought hers could use another round back slash or two.

She also said that we were NOT to put any of our "usual" corrections in HER patterns because they were probably not necessary.

I would either have to stuff a pillow up the back of that shirt, or start over. 

Obviously, I couldn't finish Muslin #1 with all those problems, so I started Muslin #2.  It was from a soft woven fabric that I thought would make a nice lightweight jacket.  I began by making adjustments to the paper pattern pieces.  I'm not sure now what exactly I did, but whatever it was, I must have been in a coma while doing it.

Here is Muslin #2:

Check out those bust darts on Muslin #2!

They point straight up to the apex of my NOSE!

Of course, this is pulling to the back also.  Any further up and the darts would have been pointing down to my rear end over my shoulder!

Here is the back of Muslin #2.  Notice how the yoke is darker than the rest because it is a double thickness of fabric.  The neckline SHOULD be up by my hair.

And here on the left you can see how the blouse is hiking up in the front and the bust dart is way off.

I decided after looking at this that I needed a larger Full Bust Adjustment.  I have NEVER used over 5/8" additional width for a bust adjustment.  In this pattern, I used a whole inch.

Phylly's "Dolly Parton" boobs didn't even require that much in this pattern!!!

Again, you can see how it is falling backwards on me and the hem in the front is hiked way up. 

Here is another thing I didn't like about this pattern as it was.

The yoke line was way up on the top of my shoulder.  I suppose it is okay if it is up there, but you can't even see it from the front of the blouse. 

This lovely number is now going to the junk yard with Muslin #1. 

After these two failures, I borrowed Phylly's paper pattern, and I drew off a whole new set for myself.  The first pattern pieces were wadded up and tossed.  There was so much tape on them, I could have made another dress form out of them.

I decided to make only ONE yoke layer.
I added a HIGH upper round correction.
I added a whole inch full bust adjustment.
I moved the bust darts down so they pointed where they were supposed to.
I shortened the front shoulder seam by 5/8", and I lengthened the back shoulder seam by 5/8".
I changed the neckline and made a facing for it.

So, are you ready???  Here is Muslin #3.  I have been wearing it all day, and I really like it.  It is so comfortable.

Notice the yoke line.  It is forward on my shoulder so you can see it.  The bust darts are right.  It isn't pulling backward on my neck.

And FOR SURE notice this!  Where the front crosses over, the dots are sort of matched up.  I worked real hard on that.

The garment hangs down in the front to the same length as the back.   My jeans are huge.  They are a size 16, and I wear a 12 now.  They were the only white jeans I had though.


And here is my blouse "Phylly-Style" with a shirt underneath it.  I didn't have a single long sleeve white tee shirt in my closet.  I couldn't believe it.  Notice how the white shirt hangs down longer on my right side.  That is because I didn't make it, and it hasn't been sewn up higher on my low shoulder.  I need to do that.  I knew Phylly wouldn't care, so I wore it anyway.

And so you want to know what any of this has to do with Sure-fit Designs.  What it has to do with Sure-fit Designs is that I had to make THREE muslins of the Relax-A-Little pattern before I got it right.  With Sure-fit Designs, the fit is right to start with -- or, at least, very close.

Here is my PLEAT blouse.  This was made with my Sure-fit Designs Dress Kit.  It is a beautiful blouse, and it fits me perfect.  The only problem is the neckline is cut too wide.  I have fixed that in the paper so I won't do that again.  I have a strapless bra SOMEwhere.

The fabric is from Peggy at Silhouette Patterns.  All gone, I'm sure.  I love it.  Black and white and any other color are my favorite.  Don't you love my mug from Margaret?  I have to remind myself to wash it.

 Now, to me, THAT is perfect fit!

I just wish I could make any style I want with SFD.  I know it is possible, but I just stand and stare, and I'm afraid to start drawing lines.  What I need to do is use SFD and make it the same style as the shirt above.  If it wasn't for the collar, I would be a lot braver.

I've got to go!  My hubby is on his way.  I have to make it look like I keep the house perfect all the time.  My fabric is still all over the living room.

BTW, if the pictures and words seem all messed up, it is a Blogger problem.  I keep putting them where I want them, but Blogger decides where it wants them to be.  Sorry if it is confusing.

Happy sewing, my friends.  And if you don't sew, you should.  It is really a wonderful skill.

Hugs, Joy


  1. Joy,
    I am in envy of the SFD blouse - the fabric is stunning and the fit is spot on!

    Have you tried Glenda's way of adapting commercial patterns?

    I am in the process of making my muslin with the SFD Dress. I am so excited to finally be working with the system.

    While I was waiting to hear from Glenda re: my pics of my pattern, I laid down my bodice then it topped with a commercial pattern I have been wanting to do. I could easily see where to make corrections (dart, length, shoulder, etc.) Once I have made the SFD muslin dress I will be attempting the commercial conversion. I will keep you posted. It will probably be next week as it is a busy church weekend.

    Also, I LOVE the first muslin fabric too!

    Bless you,

    Debora from NM

  2. I have given up on LC's patterns. One of my sewing friends has noticed that patterns often seem to follow the body style of the designer. Neither you nor I look anything like Louise! So I also use SFD and am happy with them. It is not hard to fit design details from other patterns on your SFD blueprint pattern. Just make a "pattern sandwich" with SFD on the bottom, the new pattern on top, and over it all your tracing paper.

  3. I think your friend is right, Carole. So far I've been pleased with Louise's patterns. The pattern Joy has been struggling with was one of the easiest I've made in the last five years since I returned to sewing. I did a 3/4" FBA and that was it. No round back and no swayback adjustment. Her new pants pattern was great for me, too. I normally do at least an inch and a half FBA; of course, that is better than the 3" I used to do before losing weight.

    I love my SFD system, too, but I must admit that I struggle with using it to re-draw other patterns. I think I look at my big busted SFD pattern and the regular pattern and just freak out. There is so much difference and I don't know where to begin. I keep meaning to talk to Glenda about it, but never do take the time to sit Down and write her. So Glenda, if you are reading this, I can't figure out what to do because my patterns look so weird compared to regular patterns.

    Joy, I'm so glad you finally got RAL to fit you like you like.

    Hugs, Phylly

  4. I. too have been having great luck w/ CLD patterns, though I must take them in to fit myself b/c they do run large on me~ I have not have to do alterations as you have done but you have done very well for yourself! Why can't you use existing patterns and fit them via SF?? I would think that this would be easy to do???? Perhaps add length and of course fit it the way you fit using SF???? Plus I would think that SF is designed to do just that,,,,( use it on patterns you desire to work with??) Otherwise one is confined to using only SF patterns for life (when you might want to go with a different look??)
    I do not have rounded back nor bust issues( as in a teeny bust LOL!) Not sure, but I do end up taking in CLD patterns, and am anxious to get the new pattern ( pants) b/c they are more fitted and I would like to add that to my sewing repetoire! I think everyone has fitting issues that are unique to their body,,,,,but,,,,,yes those patterns normally fit me right off and do look good on me and I always receive compliments when wearing them ( those and The Sewing Workshop patterns b/c they are a bit edgy and fun ,,,,, and again , more high end looking) I have no problem using lovely (and expensive fabrics) for a that look( which I always get using CLD patterns and of course fabulous fabulous fabric!)
    I am so so sorry that it did not work out for you~ Louise is a great teacher, you were blessed to see her, I am hoping to take a class from here someday soon as she is a talented seamstress, teacher and a leader in the industry ,there is so much for me to learn!!!! FOr now I must be content to watch her DVD's until I can get away!
    PS I saw your pants fit you so well Phylly on a a sewing website, they looked fabulous on you!!!!!!!! Mahvelous,,,

    So sorry it did not work out for you Joy,,

  5. PS, I really do like the collar on you,maybe once you get everything worked out try the collar again?? It makes the pattern ( I think), it is simple, and very cute, very relaxed and BTW I love your fabric for the collared blouse, too bad it did not fit b/c that is really cute fabric
    lovely fabric~

  6. I love your SF result and the fabric is just lovely.
    I think the other pattern doesn't suit your body type.
    I use my SF to copy a style that I like - getting good at rotating darts.
    I wrote a review on PR yesterday re a sundress made using SF

    in Sunny NZ - :)

  7. When I look at your collar issue with CLD looks like you might have a forward shoulder adjustment to make....when the neckline has an inclination to favor the back of the neckline, that is usually the problem, it also looks like an upper round back correction could help with a better fit for you.

    In CLD patterns, I use a sm. in the neckline thru mid armscye and morph to a med. as the patterns are generously sized. The pants fit me so well, there are no alterations except for a small adjustment to the front crotch area.

    Enjoy your blog and applaud your persistence in getting a great fit!!

  8. Your sure fit is a winner for SURE! Muslin #3 is a great fit too, but I don't know if I would ever have enough patience to make THREE muslins!
    I bet we'll be seeing more sure fit patterns for SURE!


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Hugs, Joy