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Class Reviews > Make a Bodice Muslin, from Shannon Gifford

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Posted by: Jenadina
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Member since: 3/20/06
Reviews written: 2
Sewing skills:Advanced Beginner
Favored by: 1 people
classes reviewed: 1
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Posted on: 5/7/09 3:54 PM
Rating: starstarstar
Review Rating: Very Helpful by 19 people   
Web site/URL: Make a Bodice Muslin
This class is a combination of flat pattern and muslin fitting. There were 11 lessons, plus some bonus material, as follows:

Introduction: The "why" of making a muslin.
Lesson 1 -- materials and preparation: This is pretty self-explanatory; you will learn what supplies you need and take the measurements necessary for this class.

Bonus -- shoulders and neck template: This ALONE would have been worth the price of admission for me. I have a non-standard shoulder slope and now I know how to adjust my patterns to conform...and have no more slippage of shoulder seams! Best of all, we traced these templates off onto cardboard so they are permanent and reusable. Shannon teaches us how to make use of the template even when the neckline of the pattern is dramatically different (the templates are jewel-necked).

Lesson 2 -- measurements and what to do with them: This was the flat-pattern alteration section, where we actually make use of our template, alter for size adjustments, fix armscye issues if necessary after other adjustments, and move bust points if needed.

Bonus -- How to do a full-bust adjustment: I didn't need this section, but it does include FBAs in both darted and princess-seamed styles.

Lesson 3 -- putting the muslin together: Now that the (small amount) of math is done, we're on to the next step. Shannon gives us detailed instructions on putting our muslin together to get ready for fitting.

Lesson 4 -- fitting, part 1 (shoulders and neck): Detailed instructions on fitting the shoulders and neck, including raising or lowering necklines as desired.

Lesson 5 -- fitting, part 2 (the back): Here are the side seam and back alterations. I found Shannon's help invaluable for this step, as I don't have the 2 mirrors needed to do this alteration myself and my husband didn't have time to help me. I uploaded a photo to the class gallery, and Shannon was able to tell me exactly where to take the necessary tuck based on my photo. No more back wrinkles!

Bonus -- how to rotate a dart: exactly what it says :)

Lesson 6 -- fitting, part 3 (the front): Shannon talks about fitting both darted and princess-seamed styles. We (if necessary) move/adjust/add darts in the darted blouse section, and learn how to adjust princess seams in the princess-seamed blouse section. We also learn to to adjust the waist length when it's off and true-up the hem level.

Lesson 7 -- fitting, part 4 (the sleeve): First we measure the arm, then adjust the paper sleeve pattern. Next we'll cut and stitch the sleeve and baste it into the bodice to check the fit. We "read the wrinkles" and make corrections on the muslin.

Lesson 8 -- transferring markings and correcting the pattern: Now we are ready to correct our pattern. Shannon gives us step-by-step instructions for how to do so, including correcting grainlines and facings. Next we mark all pattern pieces and use this new, corrected pattern to make a second muslin to double-check our fit.

Lesson 9 -- second muslin, a look at style: We take a look at design lines, and can change things to be more flattering, such as pocket placement or collar style.

Lesson 10 -- second muslin, add construction details: Now, if you like, is the time to play. Add a design detail you fell in love with in RTW, such as an interesting collar or cuff treatment. Change the style lines completely. Play! Have fun!

Lesson 11 -- final things: A small final note from Shannon

Bonus -- repositioning the sleeve seam
Bonus -- adjusting shoulder width
Bonus -- making custom shoulder pads
Bonus -- what to do with a curved back seam

I loved this class. Shannon Gifford is an excellent and patient teacher who is always ready to help if we need clarification or advice. Shannon does teach us how to "read the wrinkles," so to speak, so we are not ending the class reliant on someone else for help with fitting. I mention this because I was nervous that I would end up with a perfect blouse muslin from this class, but be unable to transfer that knowledge to other projects. I am glad to find that this is not the case.

One thing I would recommend is using gingham, at least for the first muslin, so that Shannon can just tell you to take a tuck 2 checks deep or whatever the case may be. I think it makes things easier for everyone!

I whole-heartedly recommend this class and plan to take most of Shannon's other classes as well.

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8 Comments
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ryan's mom said...
I, too, loved this class. In fact, I took it twice, learning double the info the second time around.
5/8/09 6:59 AM
Mufffet said...
Absolutely.
5/8/09 1:00 PM
LoriU said...
Thank you so much for the review! I almost signed up, now I'll know it's a good one for next time!
5/8/09 9:59 PM
nancy2001 said...
Sounds like a great class.
5/10/09 7:14 PM
Miss Fairchild said...
I loved this class, too. After many years of frustration trying to fit a bodice with no help from a fitting buddy, Shannon became my ''fitting buddy'' and it was well worth it! Try her patternmaking class; that's an eye opener...
5/14/09 6:21 PM
grandmasewnsew said...
Thank you for posting this. May I ask if your able to save the information to use in the future? I would probably need to do this a few times before really "getting it" and on a few different fabrics. Also, do you have a dummy of some type that you use too or just fit it on yourself?
5/15/09 9:50 AM
Jenadina said...
I was able to save the information. All class lessons were in PDF format, which I both saved AND printed. I'm going to have them bound to keep as a book. I myself do not have any sort of mannequin, though Shannon went over turning a fitting shell into a dressmaker's dummy, which is something I'm going to do soon!
5/15/09 12:49 PM
grandmasewnsew said...
Jenadina, thanks again. The class looks like one I should take.
5/15/09 3:23 PM
 
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