Wearing History - Test Pattern, Part I
Today's project was to determine A) what view to make and B) what alterations needed to be made to the pattern to "make it work" for my shape/size. The largest size the pattern goes to is a 22, with measurements of 40-34-43 and mine vary considerably from those. I will be giving my edits to the pattern in both inches and centimeters, though, because I like working with cm because they can be much more precise (for me). Centimeters will appear in brackets [like so].
My measurements are 43-36-44 [109 / 91,5 / 111,75] (on a good day when I'm standing tall) and I'm a whopping 5'2" tall, so I will need to shorten the whole skirt by a good 1.5" [3,8]. The garment has a total of 7.25" [18,3] ease in the bust and 3/4"  in the waist/hip area for the largest size as drafted. I am not changing the bodice at all because the wearing ease that is built in will accomodate my chest just fine with a good 3" [7,6] to spare. The bodice lower edge is gathered to the waist, so it will not be *as* full on me, but that is OK. Another reason I'm NOT GOING THERE with changes to the bodice is that the sleeves are a bit more complicated to alter and I typically do not succeed with sleeve alterations. In fact, I typically have to go down a sleeve size or two to get them to fit right and not have me look like I'm wearing my mother's clothes to dress up in.
I added 5/8" [1,7] to each side seam of the waist which gives a bit more ease than the original pattern and accomodates my 2" larger waist. To the hip area, I added 7/8" [2,2] to accomodate my 1" larger hips and give a little more wiggle room. I tend to have a long stride, so I don't want to pop any seams if I have to dart after one of my children. I know that "ladies who dressed" didn't run after their children, but they didn't have my kids, either!
So far, I am very happy with the quality of the pattern received. I like the fact that it came on ONE continuous sheet of heavy duty paper. Typically, I either trace all my patterns or run them through the large format copier at Kinko's (spendy!!!) so that I can make my personalized edits. This saves me a HUGE amount of time and expense. The pattern has an MSRP of $22, but if I were to take a 99¢ "Big Four" pattern to Kinko's to copy onto the same type paper, it could EASILY run me the same price - if not more. So for value, Wearing History gets 4 ✂ out of a possible 4. Anything that saves me time and gas money is a win. One improvement I would make if at all possible is to have a "finished garment" measurement for the bust/waist/hip or an idea of "garment ease". This might not be possible, but it would have saved me a good 30 minutes or more because I had to measure each pattern piece about eleventy times to make sure I got it right. Having that info handy to begin with would be less frustrating. However, since not every pattern available provides this info, I'm not counting off for it. :-D I might like a scootch more room between the skirt pieces and the ones directly next to them as my teeny alteration would run right into the piece directly adjacent, but again, NOT a ding against the pattern. If I were smaller around, this would SO not be an issue. And really, copying two pieces is not a deal breaker since I'm used to SO much more effort to get a usable pattern.
Next up will be the muslin attempt and fit concerns. After I find the fabric I intend to use for it...