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Message Board > Fitting Woes > Portfolio dress poofy in back ( Moderated by CarolynGM, Deepika)

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Portfolio dress poofy in back
Gyount
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Subject: Portfolio dress poofy in back--updated with completed pics Date: 9/8/12 3:30 PM

I made a muslin of the Lisette Portfolio in the size 12 and got an overall decentish fit, but decided it was a bit snugger than I wanted. I was getting a bit of extra fabric "poofage" in the back, just above my rear. My theory was that the poof was caused by its being too snug on my butt/hips, so I thought sizing up would fix it. Although I think the 14 fits better overall, it looks worse because the over-the-rear poof got worse instead of better which makes me suspect this wasn't caused by being too tight after all. What is the fix for this? I'm just an advanced beginner and don't know anything about adjustments... I am hourglass shaped and starting to think this pattern wasn't a good choice for me. Thanks for any advice!
-- Edited on 9/19/12 8:42 PM --

meleliza
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In reply to Gyount <<


Date: 9/9/12 9:39 AM

I havent actually tried this one because I suspected that such a loose fitting baggy design wouldn't flatter my hourglass figure. Also, it seems difficult to alter. Although I like the Lisette patterns in general and find them reliable and well drafted, not every pattern will work for every body. I often get lots of poof at the center back of patterns because my low back is narrow and because it has a deep inward curve. This may be called a sway back, it became much more pronounced after three children. On many patterns, you can alter for this by removing width/length from the center back seam, waist seam or by taking in larger back darts. However, it's a difficult fix for loose fitting clothes. A lightweight dray fabric may help, or some elastic or shirring in the back. If you post some pictures, it will be easier for people to help. Stand straight up when you do. I'm interested to see what others suggest.

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Melanie

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In reply to Gyount <<


Date: 9/9/12 10:13 AM

Perhaps short waisted in the back and it's the extra lenght at CB that pools at back waist. I get this on store bought garments too. You try to pin it in, fish eye dart to nothing at side seams.

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Janome10001, Babylock ESG3, Brother ULT 2001, White 634D serger, Pfaff 1472, Singer featherweight, Singer 14T957Dc, Bernina FunLock 009DCC coverlock, Brother PQ1500S, Janome CP900.

JTink
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In reply to Gyount <<


Date: 9/9/12 11:55 AM

Can you post a picture? You might need a small sway back adjustment.

Gyount
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Date: 9/9/12 12:28 PM

Thanks for the replies. I took some pics of both dresses and have uploaded them to flickr. Here's one of the size 14 back http://www.flickr.com/photos/ginayount/7962609720/ and here's what it looked like in the finished 12 http://www.flickr.com/photos/ginayount/7962611442/. There's a bunch of other views if you click around those two. Looking at the pics, I almost think the size of the 12 looks better after all, but I definitely think it's too tight in the bust--there's a big wrinkle on the side of the bust (http://www.flickr.com/photos/ginayount/7962616888/), which I assume is due to being too small. Maybe I just don't like/am not used to the look of the less-figure fitting dress? I admit, I don't have many (any?) tunic-style dresses or tops.
-- Edited on 9/9/12 5:12 PM --

nicegirl
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Date: 9/9/12 7:01 PM

Yup, that's a swayback. This photo is the giveaway. Luckily, the dress has a center back seam. You need to take length out (shaped like a dart) at the center back of the pattern piece at the fullness--for me, this is generally right at the marked waist--probably at least an inch at CB tapering to nothing at the side seam. Add this length back at the hem. You can see on one of my projects, below, that I need a *huge* swayback adjustment. It seems crazy, but it really works.



Plan to do this for every project for the rest of your life.

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http://theslapdashsewist.blogspot.com
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2007: purchased 115+, sewed 105+
So close to parity, yet so far

Trying again in 2008
Yards purchased: 133
Yards sewn: Somewhere around 95

2009? I give up

meleliza
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Date: 9/10/12 9:55 AM

Yes, that puddle of fabric in your lower back is definitely a sway back. I have that too. The worst part is that now you see it, you can *never* not see it! And suddenly, every garment in your closet will seem poorly fitted as will every ready to wear thing you try. I find I'm willing to overlook it on tshirts, though.

On the upside, I feel like the sway back makes me look thinner, since it narrows my profile at the high waist. And the adjustment isn't always complicated. If you have a waist seam or center back seam, it's actually easy. It's just tricky to make those loose fitting things look nice.

Which brings me back to the portfolio. This is a loose fitting pullover style. I'm looking at the pattern now and see that is does have a center back seam, so you could make an adjustment to the existing garment. Taking up a little width may help, though ideally you would also take up length in the flat pattern stage. Keep in mind that as you fit it more closely you may have some trouble getting it over your head. If so, you could use a zip instead of the button closure.

There a project runway dress pattern that has similar pockets and looks like this but is much more fitted, and I think, more flattering for a curvy figure. In fact, I saw something like that in denim in a recent Boden cataloge.

------
Melanie

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Date: 9/10/12 10:43 AM

From your photos it looks like the sway back puddle of fabric is caused by too much fabric length in the upper back (see how the back neckline sags?) rather than from the curvature of your back waist. Grab the back neckline and pull it up slightly... does the puddle of fabric go away?

If so, try this sway back alteration. It's a bit more complicated, but the bonus is that you can use it on patterns with no center back seam! It's also known as an "erect upper back" alteration.

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Date: 9/10/12 4:57 PM

That dress looks adorable on you! Your fabric choices are inspired. I agree with your re-assessment of the fit, though--the 12 definitely fits you better. You could do an FBA for the bust issue, or just dart out those wrinkles, or just add a teensy bit more ease at the side seams AND darts.

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~Gem in the prairie

Gyount
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Date: 9/10/12 10:23 PM

Thank you so much for the replies! I checked out the links y'all provided, and I can see it's totally a textbook swayback issue, with the horizontal wrinkles in the tighter version and pooling in the looser one. And you're right that I'll never be able to unsee it--today I wore a RTW dress that looked fine to me previously, but now I see a tiny bit of pooling. I've got to think its gotten worse (post-kids?) because I certainly would have noticed it on tighter fitting dresses before... Unless I've just managed to avoid styles that would be more prone to this.

So is there any salvaging the 14? Is belting my best bet? And does the 14 look too baggy overall? I'm getting mixed opinions on which one looks better. I want to salvage that one since it has my Aviary 2 fabric.I will try letting out the seams at the bust and darts on the 12 to see if I can get rid of the wrinkles....

My second foray into sewing for myself isn't going so well. Maybe I will stick to children's clothes. :((

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