CS1201: Fitting Day 2

Warning! Long Post. Many Pix!

I made few changes to the tissue. I was fairly sure I was seeing way to much ease and trimmed all the additional I’d added along the  seam allowances.  While I’m pretty sure the CB needed more length above the cross back, I’m not sure how much.  I added 1/2, could have used at least a smidge more.  Instead of cutting up my original tracing,  I traced the updated back tissue and made a 3/4″ RBA using these instructions from Fit For Art. I”m sure I’ve seen other instructions which rotate the added width at CB to the shoulder dart but this is OK. It has the advantage of  keeping the shoulders and shoulder dart as Connie drafted.

I placed the front tissue back on top of the now disassembled, starched and pressed pieces.  Trimmed the excess and all the frayed edges. Then copied the front darts and the guide lines.  I made a few extra guidelines above the center front and above the tummy.  The back,  I cut  from fresh fabric.  I opted not use a CB seam this time.  The first time I was concerned about not enough cross width. Now I don’t think that’s an issue but I did mark the center back as well as the darts and guide lines and the few extra horizontal lines above the center back.

 I serge finished the neckline, armscye and the hemlines.  I also serge finished the 1″ CF seam allowance.  I’m hoping that helps keep the area from stretching.  I need to know if I’m creating the pooching from my alterations or heavy handling.  All the darts and seams have been basted with water-soluble thread.  When I know I’ll probably be ripping seams, I prefer having WST.   Hoping I’d fixed the cross back bowing with these few changes,I did my first try on and pix.

I’m happy to report that most of the bowing has been removed with just the RBA:


This is judgement call, and mine can be questioned. I don’t have mad fitting skills.  Fitting frustrates me because I can’t read the lines. Expert advice rarely helps.   The best solutions have come from  internet ‘friends’.  So I think this is improved. But I don’t think the increase from 1/2″ to 3/4″ made a big difference. I was hoping the line would be perfectly straight.  Since it’s not and because the final fit on Day  1 included the armscye darts where todays muslin did not, the next step was working on the gaping armscyes.

I will share some Day 2 first fit pics

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Note that the back neck is not pooching at all. It’s nicely hugging my neck.  Fixed no doubt by extending the RBA across the back instead of stopping at the dart. Since this is a sloper for a garment and not a moulage, I think the cross back width is correct. There are some drag lines below the cross back. I don’t think they reach the cross back, more shoulder-blade area. The back is also lacking flare and ripples at the hem. all 3 according to Fit for Art indicators for an RBA.   I need to fix the gaping armscye but at the same time, I’m wondering if I need to remove at or above the waist, the 3/4″ length added at the cross back?

I’ve worn fronts worse than this. It’s still gaping/pooching at the zipper (CF), though not as badly as end of Day 1. When I extended the back, did that also release the front pooching?  The apex is a little lower than I prefer but I’m leaving that until later. I need to correct some front arm gaping. Once again, this is a blouse WITH sleeves sloper. They, the armscyes should not be tight. Suzy Furrer even said to leave the armscye dart unsewn on a blouse with sleeves because it would be more comfortable to wear. Besides, once the sleeve is inserted, nobody can peek inside.  Initially, I’m more concerned about the deep drag lines forming diagonally from apex almost to the side seam. I can increase the seam allowance depth. I’m not sure I want to. Once again, this is to be a blouse.  Blouses are not normally skin-tight. From years of Peggy Sagers’ lectures, I know I like 1-2″ bust ease.  Also as in Day 1, the front waist is slightly rising. Another problem to be left until the upper bodice is fit. It’s entirely possible that changing the shoulder slope and fixing those bust drag lines will improve the waist guide line position.

One, I think, minor notation. I stitched the back darts 1/2″ and front darts 1/8″  deep vs the 1/4 and 1/2 Connie drafted. I know from experience that my back darts need to be deeper than the front, but I also saw that during Round 1.

I knew I needed to be able to see if correcting something on the front created issues in the back or side and vice versa.The succeeding fittings were, necessarily, multiple small changes and consumed the rest of the day. (My sewing sessions are usually 3-4 hours).

Next fitting I intended to add 1/4″ darts high on the armscye that might later be smoothed up to the shoulder seam.  I didn’t want to mess with the shoulder length. It was perfect for me.  I’d also intended to increase the side seam depth 1/8″ for this fitting; but as I thought about the pix, I changed my mind. I created a 3/8″ front armscye dart but  did nothing to the back. Instead the side seams were stitched to the full depth Connie drafted, 1″.  The hem felt a little tight in back but loose in front.  Up at the tummy, the front was too tight it’s seen in the pic through the drag lines that suddenly develop for the first time below my tum tum.

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The underarm feels fine. Hugs my body without being tight and I don’t think I’m seeing any new wrinkles at the armscye. I’ve not added a back armscye/shoulder dart and the back armscye sticks up a bit as always:


Now this is a back that looks slightly, an itty bit, too wide.


Like I should use the 5/8″ SA instead of the 1/4″ for which I adapted my tissue. However I’m more concerned by the waist where another pooch has made its appearance.


Next fitting? Let out the side seams  about an inch above the waist to the hip (which also happens to be the bottom edge/hem).  I may want to offset the front side seam at the hem — later. For now, too much ease is tolerable.  I also need to add the 1/4″ back armscye dart.

Both actions (back armscye dart and narrower side seams) improved the look and feel. Surprising  the side view was also improved but the front about the same.  Contemplating some advice received recently , I added a 3/8 tuck at the center back between the darts which then tapered to nothing at the side seam. You have to see this back NOW!


There are some lines above that are new. I”m not sure that’s a fitting issue or a sewing issue.  I do find that these changes are best when done to the tissue. For one thing, I make the same change on both sides. Even though it’s not patently obvious, one side of that fisheye dart is higher than the other.  Pretty sure that pulled the fabrics off grain and is responsible for most of the drag lines.  The back fisheye dart even slightly improved the side but not the front


In for a penny in for a pound, eh? I extended the fish eye dart. It starts below the bust dart increased to 3/8″ at the side seam; continues across the back at 3/8″ to the other side seam and then tapes to nothing beneath the other bust dart.

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Looks better in the mirror. For one thing, my front view is slightly turned so that the right side, the lower shoulder, is prominent.  In the side view I think the drag lines are coming from the side seam not the tummy. Think also I have the issue of the grain being off. More importantly,  I think the dart is at the wrong place on the front.  I think this really needs to be above the apex.  I  don’t like the bust guide line hovering just below my personal apex.

That concludes 3 days of working with CS1201. 1 day of prep; 2 days fitting. I don’t mind spending the time when I feel like I’m making progress.  It’s helpful that I’m working with something that feels familiar.   Right now, I need to think about the changes and results and decide what to do next.  You know, I’m really thinking of new fabric that’s not been pressed, stretched and steamed.  Yes, new fabric to go with a newly modified tissue.



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