Sunday, April 19, 2015

Top with 4 shoulder pleats

As I’ve mentioned before I’m working on pattern drafting. Till now I’ve worked on tops, dresses, jackets and skirts that I wanted to wear to get a better fitting result than with commercial patterns. In general it worked really well (the color-block dress from January was such a project).
I want to explore possibilities a bit more and are working on drafts that not necessarily will end up as garments that I make in fabric and are worn by me.
This is a draft described in the book Patternmaking for Fashion Design by Helen Joseph-Armstrong. This is a textbook for students with many illustrations and ideas. It also describes how to draft a sloper, but I use my own sloper drafted with another system. In the end slopers are more or less the same. The instructions from the book do not work for me because it’s not metric. I’m fine with instructions like 5/8, 3/8 of an inch, making a complete draft with a non-metric system was too confusing (I tried).
IMG_1263 IMG_1264
This muslin was made with the basic block drafted with my measurements which has a waist, bust and shoulder dart. I do want to get an idea of what will work and what not. I like the detail of the shoulder darts. For a summer top the neckline needs to be different, lower and wider. That will mean that I have to reconsider the draft: either the smallest dart is omitted, or the darts must be closer together. For the moment I see this as a practise run, not sure whether I will make it to a wearable garment.
(nb: the dressform is not like me, so defenitely not showing the fit correctly).


  1. I'm impressed! I've been working with my sewing teacher on dart manipulation. The concept is easy, but making something attractive and wearable is a challenge. Thanks for the inspiration! - Brenda

  2. Nice details. I have been Suzie Furrer's Craftsy classes and I find the imperial measurements confusing…and a pain to convert. So far I have only done a skirt. But it is fun.

  3. That must be frustrating when imperial measurements are used. Though I wasn't raised with metric, it is so logical that I can use it.
    i can relate to your interest in pattern-making - I am sure I'll explore it too, when I have more time. That's the nice thing about sewing - there is always more to learn.

  4. Even in muslin, this is very lovely.

  5. I've also been working on designing with my blocks. Getting a wearable style has proved very difficult. I have a number of books, online classes and live classes (metric). I don't really mind whether I use metric or imperial - I don't convert, just use as is. I really like the style you have created here - many of Joseph-Armstrong's designs look great but I've only tried a couple so far.

  6. I like those shoulder darts and think your pattern drafting is going well.

  7. If you took the line of the innermost darts and used that as the drafting line for a V-neckline, I think it would be beautiful and work for summer.