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Altering the neckline on a princess-seam bodice
Pattern Drafting
mippy
mippy
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Date: 5/29/12 5:18 PM

Hi! I have a pattern for a princess seam bodice where the seams go right up into the shoulders. I would like to alter the round neckline into a sweetheart, and this looks to me like a case of jut changing the neckline on the front panel - right?

I've looked through my patterns with a sweetheart neckline and the princess seam seems to curve over the bust into the armscye rather than going straight up - like this

So is there a structural reason for this, or is this style designed for certain fabrics rather than the woven cotton I plan to use? Is it going to be impossible to change the neckline of my existing pattern in this way? I would need someone to show me how to alter the curve-into-arm type, so I was wondering whether I could crack on with altering my round collar neckline pattern or whether it would end in disaster!

mippy
mippy
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Date: 5/29/12 5:22 PM

Sorry, should have said - the existing round-neck pattern was drafted to my exact measurements, so it already fits perfectly!

DolphinDancer30

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Date: 5/29/12 5:41 PM

If I understand you correctly:
1. Trace a copy of the center pattern section.

2. Fold your copy in half (center front). Keep the copy folded until the last step.

3. Hold your folded pattern copy to your body and make a mark on the lowest point for your new neckline at the center front.

4. Make a mark at the shoulder seam for the widest point of the new neckline.

5. Draw or trace your desired neckline on the folded pattern copy, being sure not to go beyond the two marks you made. Using a pencil is good at this point--it may take several attempts to get a pleasing shape.

6. Hold the pattern up to your body and see if you like the drawn neckline.

7. Once you're happy with the new neckline, cut the FOLDED copy on the new neckline (leaving a seam allowance, if you use them).

8. You may need to adjust the center back piece so the neckline meets at the shoulder seams.

Miss Fairchild
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In reply to mippy <<


Date: 5/30/12 7:49 AM

Quote:
So is there a structural reason for this,

No. Other than to make one look slimmer. I read in a book that the princess seam coming off the shoulder makes one look thinner because it's a line dividing the body. But Lutterloh uses this bust princess on all its patterns including the plus size, so maybe I read wrong.

Quote:
or is this style designed for certain fabrics rather than the woven cotton I plan to use?[QUOTE]
No. Lutterloh uses this design all the time and they have a broad range of fabric choices...yours.

[quote] Is it going to be impossible to change the neckline of my existing pattern in this way?

No. Dolphindancer has the best directions I've seen.

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Nancy K
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In reply to Miss Fairchild <<


Date: 5/30/12 9:44 PM

The shoulder princess is a design decision. Both types of princess seams are easier to fit to a larger bust than darts, but both are variations on darts which are built into the seams. The shoulder princess tends to less curved than the armhole princess. Vertical lines are always slimming making the shoulder princess a bit more slimming than the armhole type.

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DolphinDancer30

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Date: 5/31/12 12:24 PM

I agree with Nancy K. If you're busty, the neckline on the pattern illustration will really emphasize the bust. Think a big expanse of unbroken fabric from your chin to the waist. Changing the neckline will visually break up that space. You could leave the armhole princess seaming and change the neckline--scoop, boat, vee, or sweetheart neckline will be more flattering.

If you want the neckline pictured and you're busty, it would be better to change it to a shoulder princess.

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