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A vintage pattern

The muslin of the Burda top is thrown away. I'm not convinced that this will be a good top for me. This really is the last time I tried a top with a front with a twist or a knot. Pity, I like them so much.

Good, that meant 1 basket to fill, and this it is:
A Ralph Lauren pattern from 1986.

The pattern is a size 12, which is my size if I go by high bust measurement, but have to do an FBA (so glad I found the Pattern Review site last year, I did not know about taking high bust measurement before as starting point for a top).
I traced the pattern two weeks ago, and waited the arrival of the book Fitting Finesse from Nancy Zieman, that I bought on e-bay. I'd like to know more of adjusting pattern, and already have the book Fast Fit of Sandra Betzina. Then Nancy of Encue Creations showed Fitting Finesse on her blog, and I asked her if there was a different way of doing a FBA in this book. She kindly replied that there was a difference and that it was well worthwhile to have this book. Yesterday I received it, and she was right. Thanks Nancy.
So this is the result so far, after adding a dart to make more space in the front part. The pattern has no dart, so I added one.

Above are pictures of the further unadapted top.
Points that are OK:
  1. Enough space in front after adding dart
  2. Neckline is fine
  3. Back armhole is fine
  4. Length is good, this was with cut with seam allowance, so it will be a bit shorter if I don't increase the length of the pattern. No problem if it is a bit shorter.
Issues to solve:
  1. there is too much space on the front armhole
  2. the seam allowances of 5/8 inch are also added to this muslin, this will mean that you can see my bra too clearly after taking off 5/8 inch.
  3. I must cut off the seam allowance of the armhole, to know if I want a finished shoulder length as in my pictures, or if the line of the pattern is OK.
On the last picture I pinned away the width in the front armhole. Back to the book to see how I should


  1. I'll suggest another book to look at (you might be able to find in the library) - Fit for Real People - Palmer/Pletsch. Has a slash/spread technique for the full bust adjustment, which I tried for the first time last night (On a K. Ali Simplicity pattern, sleeveless top, sorry it's downstairs so I don't have the number - maybe 3805?). I've used the Nancy Zieman method before, and it does o.k. but I find I have extra fabric just above my bust, lower armhole level. I did get an oddly shaped armhole on the front piece with the Fit for Real People method - but made up it looks fine - no gap, and no extra fabric! I do wonder if the extra is because of needing to add 5 inches in the front (size 16 by high bust measurement, size 20 or 22 by full bust measurement...), and that the slide and pivot adds some extra fabric that I don't need ...

  2. To Anonymous: Thanks a lot for the suggestion of this book. As I'm in the Netherlands this book is in no library over here. And there are simply no Dutch books that cover these subjects, so I bought a few books by reading about them on the internet. Difficult because I simply don't know wheter the book I'm buying works for me (I bought a book on serging that I don't use). I'll remember this one and perhaps buy it sometime.


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