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am I using too much ease
personal fit question
rmusic1
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rmusic1
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Date: 9/28/12 3:19 PM

a brief history to this question. When I was a child and well in to my twenties I was very slim. Looking back I was too slim (I've put some weight on since) and didnt help matters by living in large jumpers and jeans.

Happily, in part due to dress making, I am much more interested in getting clothes that fit and flatter me.

I've always thought a sign of a talented dressmaker on pattern review was not just a beautiful garment, but also a beautiful fit. Otherwise you could get the first in a shop!

So, on to my question. My lovely blunt sister has just given me the feedback that I spend too much time thinking about comfort when dressmaking and the amount of ease I use makes me look pregnant (!)

OK, I will always be a rectangle in shape (can live with that) but wish to achieve a flattering silhouette. I'd greatly appreciate it if anyone can have a quick peruse of the reviews I've done so far and tell me if I need to reduce the amount of ease I use.

I don't want to make more clothes where I'm duplicating things I could improve on. I know individual patterns come with different levels of ease, it's more the item which I thought looked fine in the mirror might not be quite so well fitting as I think.....

Views gratefully received.

Marie367
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In reply to rmusic1 <<


Date: 9/28/12 4:09 PM

Garments should have a good fit and have some ease for comfort (unless you like skin tight garments). It sounds like your sister has some very different tastes in clothing than you do and she thinks you would look better in some different styles than what you normally wear. That may be true but it is reasonable to require that clothes be comfortable too. You say you are a rectangle. I was always tall and thin so always looked like a rectangle too. What has worked for me is wearing clothes that define a waistline. I think maybe you need to explore some styles and find some that are comfortable and make you look good. If you are not sure what styles you like, go to some department stores and try on some different things. I don't think ease in a pattern is the problem. I think maybe you just need to find some flattering styles that you like and make some outfits based on that style/styles. HTH

stirwatersblue
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stirwatersblue
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Date: 9/28/12 4:51 PM

There is a tricky balance between comfortable ease and proper fit. How much ease you like in your clothing IS a matter of personal preference... but the amount of ease in a specific garment is part of the design. So a design should have relatively the same amount of ease (and look more or less the same), no matter what size person is wearing it. Does that make sense? A garment is meant to look a certain way, with a certain amount of ease. You can decide that it has more or less ease than you LIKE, but if you veer too much from the pattern's recommended design ease, it won't fit as intended.

So... in some cases I kind of agree with your sister.

http://sewwherenext.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/p1030661.jpg?w=768&h=1024

And
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7231/7281615258_7f40e5eb9d.jpg

...do look like you have a little more room there than you need, and you could take the fit in a bit.

I would try taking a couple of those knit dresses down a size and see how you like the fit. If it turns out you're uncomfortable, you might try STARTING with styles that are less fitted to begin with.

BTW, I did think a lot of your garments were darling! The yellow shift dress with the big paisleys is so chic and beautiful, and the jean jacket you have on with your tablecloth skirt fits you really well.

You're a slim woman, but that doesn't necessarily mean you can't enjoy/wear/prefer a looser silhouette in your clothes. But I'd achieve that by choosing less fitted garments to begin with--not making a fitted garment looser, if that makes sense! :)

------
~Gem in the prairie

RMJ
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Date: 9/28/12 4:56 PM

I looked at the photos linked to a number of your reviews and think your clothes fit very nicely. There isn't too much ease, and you don't look pregnant. I personally find that comfort comes from correct fit.

Ruth

rmusic1
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rmusic1
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Date: 9/28/12 5:21 PM

thank you for the replies so far. In answer to your specific examples stirwatersblue:

The first dress in knit is my first attempt at using a knit fabric. It's funny you picked it, as I had been thinking of taking it in some more recently and tonight I did. I've taken in by about 2cm in total at each shoulder seam and took out a similar amount in a gentle curve at the waist on each side. It certainly feels and looks better now.

The second dress is actually being worn (and is for) a friend. I've since taken it in at the waist as she her figure is different than mine. What worked for me wasnt quite for her.

I try to go for a more tailored look as I know this suits me better. I like (and think it suits me) jackets with a defined waist, or at least a shaped back. Trousers with a flared bottom suit me too, and I like unfussy details, good quality natural fibres and strong colours. I avoid pastels as they would look awful with my colouring.

Its taken a long time for me to get more confident in picking a style to suit me. English rose colouring (the polite description for pale), slim build, and long arms and legs have all in past resulted in unhappy shopping experiences. They are all reasons that contributed towards me taking up dress making.

Thanks for the reassurances. I do really value my sister's judgement, but she does have a different style and taste to me so naturally not everything will be her cup of tea as they say.

I think the success of an item of clothing is partly someone's confidence in wearing it. So if you are happy in something it shows. The knit dress is now something I will be happier in knowing the shoulders will stay put! Thanks again.

GlButterfly

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Date: 9/28/12 7:00 PM

I agree with what RMJ said.

Is your sister about 20? If that's the case, then she might think that they are too large. They're not. Maybe some could use some tweaking, but you'll get there with more experience.

Thank your sister for her advice, but don't listen to it.

------
That's Gl = for Gloria, not G. I.

Miss Fairchild
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In reply to rmusic1 <<


Date: 9/28/12 9:15 PM

First, while I am sure you love your sister dearly, you need to realize she's looking at you through her filter, as in "what she sees or expects of you". I saw your reviews and there is nothing wrong with you nor the clothing you wear. If you want to slightly tweak something, I'd suggest you take a small nip in at the waistline to give you some shape. Your jacket was absolutely perfect; but if you wanted to, a small tad taken in at the waist would give you a slight curve.

Even rectangles have waistlines and if you've ever seen a Peggy Sagers webcast, she uses several live models who have just that shape. And she encourages you to take that little bit in at the waist.

As to your ease, whether or not you should, the choice is up to you. My most favorite pair of pants are a very baggy, linen pair, purple, and have an elastic waistband in the back. I don't give a hoot if someone says I'm not stylish (DH keeps his mouth shut.. ) as it's what I want to say about my personal fashion choices. I don't have the body I had when I was 20; that's a part of life! So why should I continue to beat myself up over something I can't control?

Right now, at this moment, physically give yourself a hug and tell yourself you're worth it.

------
"Play the cards you are dealt, but choose who is sitting at the table"..AARP magazine

SEE MY ETSY SHOP HERE: http://www.etsy.com/shop/AuntMaymesAttic
My blog: http://auntmaymesattic.wordpress.com/

rhetam
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Date: 9/29/12 7:10 PM

I agree, most of your garments don't have too much ease.
The seaming on your red dress
http://sewing.patternreview.com/review/pattern/53203
is very flattering. All those seams! That was quite a project for a first dress. Would you consider top or dress patterns with similar (but fewer, of course) seams???

------
Rheta

rmusic1
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rmusic1
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Date: 9/29/12 7:21 PM

you've helped all reassure me that I am on the right track with regards to fit.

In response to some of the questions. My sister is nearly 3 years younger than me and we have very different dress styles. She's also a different body shape and bone structure.

I just wanted to get some feedback as when one of your nearest and dearest gives you their view I think it is worth a quick check.

The last question was about my very first dress making project. I am someone who very much sews what I like and then learn any bits I dont know. It does land me with some time consuming projects and learning curves. But is also results in a good deal of satisfaction!

So yes, if I liked something enough I would go for something with lots of seams again.
vogue 8701 is on my list of things to tackle soon. I have fabric for both the dress and jacket so they will be matching. The jacket has (sigh) a LOT of pieces. But it will be worth it. I have been delaying as it will be made using checked fabric and I am a bit nervous of laying out all the pieces.

But after my recent shift dress success I think I shouldnt be quite so cautious. Anyway, thanks for the confidence boost one and all.

echolalia
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echolalia
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In reply to rmusic1 <<


Date: 9/29/12 7:32 PM

The jacket pattern is lovely - and it is not difficult to make. I altered the shaping at the front lower edge and shortened and cuffed the sleeve, but the basic construction was as stipulated. It took me only a couple of sessions - once I had the cutting out done!
It needs to be cut so that it fits at the waist with enough ease to allow ease of movement, so don't over fit it. I also used some small shoulder pads to lift the shoulder line and allow it to hang from the shoulders well.
I haven't made the dress yet.

Good luck with it.
janine

------
Janine, Launceston, Tasmania, AUS

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