Category Archives: Classes

Bias and Bustiers: Draping Class Update

Please rest assured, this hasn’t (permanently) turned into a women’s sewing blog.  I have a shirtmaking project in the works that I plan a big blog series about – if you want to see the sneak preview I’ve been posting pictures on my Instagram feed, @lineofselvage.

In the meantime, here’s an update on my progress in the Fashion Draping course I’m taking at City College of San Francisco.  Since the midterm, we’ve done projects including draping flared skirts, dartless torsos, fitted torsos, and draping with knits. But two projects stand out.

Bustier

A bustier is a strapless bodice top that fits very closely to the body (though you can add a strap to it once draped).  It is different from a corset in that the bustier sits right on the body, while a corset is actually smaller than the body.

Ideally, the shaping in a bustier is accomplished by seams.  Each seam provides a place where the fabric can be sculpted and shaped over the body.  One requirement is that a seam of some sort crosses the bust point, or the apex of the bust.  This allows for shaping of the bust area.

We use draping tape to mark the style lines of the design.  Each line becomes a seam in the bustier, and is also part of the design.  Everyone was encouraged to make their own original design; mine had many style lines and curves.

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The Blue Plaid Shacket, Part 4: Pockets and Cuffs

Sorry to keep everyone in suspense with the shacket project!

I’ve been busy with some other non-sewing related projects. One of them is to assemble an application for dual Italy/America citizenship. To be recognized as an Italian citizen, I have to put together an astounding array of documents, including birth, marriage, death and naturalization certificates for my ancestors up through my grandparents. I’ve been working with my sister on this project, and although it is fun, it is a lot of effort.

Plus, I’ve been doing some other sewing stuff not related to this project (more below). Anyway, here’s a status update.

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Make My Hoodie, Part 2

In this conclusion to the Make My Hoodie series, we’ll look at fit, some samples I made, as well as pattern alterations to make this hoodie even more beginner-friendly than it already is.

Fit

The thing that made me most curious about MakeMyPattern was the fit.  How well would a computer-generated pattern fit me out of the box?

The answer: pretty well for the first attempt, well enough that I’m inclined to stick with it.  Here’s some self-timer fashion photos of my first sample.

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Make My Hoodie, Part 1

Though I like the challenge of working on intricate shirt projects, I also love to make more casual wear, especially hoodies.

For the fall, I’ve started a hoodie making project with several goals in mind. The first, of course is to make hoodies. The second is to try out MakeMyPattern.com, a free online service that drafts patterns for you based on your measurements, and provides them as a print/cut/tape PDF download.

And the third is to develop a hoodie pattern I can use in a course to teach beginning sewists. The Sips N’ Sews studio offers a bootcamp course to complete newbies.  It teaches basic machine operation, measurements, fabric, and patterns. The students leave the class ready to work on their first project. I think a hoodie can be an ideal first project for a new sewist. And the MakeMyPattern.com hoodie is ideal in several respects:

  • It is free, so students don’t have to spend extra money on a commercial pattern.
  • It is drafted to the student’s measurements, so this makes an end-run around finding the proper size for a commercial pattern.
  • It is a pullover, rather than a zip-front, so there are no zippers for a newbie sewist to cope with.
  • It has raglan sleeves, so attaching sleeves means sewing six nearly straight-line seams.
  • Sweatshirt fleece is a relatively stable knit fabric, so it won’t pose too many difficulties to a beginning student.

The only difficult parts are attaching the hood to the neckline, and attaching cuffs and waistband which are made from rib knit. Constructing the hood does requires sewing around curves, but this is not as challenging as attaching a sleeve to an armscye and there is no easing involved. Continue reading