If you don’t sew for yourself because nothing ever fits, you’re missing out on the joys of a handmade wardrobe! It doesn’t have to be hard and a few quick tips will make a world of difference. Grab a tape measure and your common sense. You can do this!
Give Yourself the Keys
A few basic measurements are the beginning to a better fit. While this may not take you to couture level, you can quickly adjust any pattern to fit your body. Remember, there’s nothing wrong with you, it’s the patterns! They don’t fit any of us and they’re not sized like the ready to wear items you buy in the store. Remember, we’re not talking about a precise fit here, but you can make it better! To begin, start with these four key measurements: full bust, high bust, waist, full hip, and arm circumference. Write them down and make sure you find a safe place to keep them. Be honest! This is just for you and no one else will know. Others just get to enjoy the beautiful clothes you’ll be making!
You’re in Charge
There are so many beautiful designs available in today’s patterns! But often we think we can’t wear a particular pattern because it looks too tight, too loose, or we don’t like the sleeves or another element of the design. Remember: You’re in charge of that pattern and how it’s going to look when you’re done. Be fearless! Using your measurements, you can change the cut of a sleeve, the fit of the body, or the way the neckline sits. The most important thing about a design is that you love the garment after it’s sewn. Spend a little time and do what it takes to enjoy sewing for yourself. That’s the real common sense secret to creating a handmade wardrobe you love and can wear proudly!
About the Author: Annette Millard loves to encourage others to make sewing easy, stress-free and fabulous! She has sewn her own clothing, taught sewing, and worked in the sewing industry for most of her life and loves what she does. Her blog, The Sewfull Life, provides helpful tips, tutorials, and project reviews. Visit Annette on her blog at www.sewfullife.com and be sure to say hello at the Sewing & Stitchery Expo in one of her three classes!
7 Easy Tips For a Better Fit
Tip #1: Don’t go by another sewist’s experience fitting a pattern! Because we are all wonderfully unique, it’s doubtful that you are the same exact size and like the same exact fit!
Tip #2: Use your pattern to find the body measurements and finished measurements before you cut! Consider how much extra room (ease) you like in your garments and keep that in mind when you choose your size(s).
Tip #3: You don’t have to use just one size of the pattern! Find the right size for your measurements and go with that. I often use two to three sizes when I’m sewing.
Tip #4: Assemble your tools and don’t be afraid of the pattern. You’ll need a dressmaker’s curve, a sturdy tape measure, a straight ruler, and a variety of marking tools.
Tip #5: Banish too tight sleeves! Compare your arm circumference to the pattern sleeve and make the proper adjustments if needed. You’ll want more ease for a woven fabric than a knit, so keep that in mind.
Tip #6: Don’t just hope it’s the right length! Measure, measure, measure. Before you do any cutting, determine the length you want, compare it to the pattern, and make your adjustments.
Tip #7: Sign up for my Common Sense Fitting class at the 2019 Sewing & Stitchery Expo. You’ll learn more valuable tips and take home a measurement chart and handout and see how easy it is to make adjustments to your patterns. I can hardly wait to hear about your success! Visit www.sewexpo.com to learn more about purchasing class tickets.