So after all the alterations and redrawings of my Colette meringue skirt pattern, I finally got a start on my first ever muslin. This was a very new experience. Doing domestic science (sewing and cooking) at school way back in the late 60's no one ever told any of us that you could actually alter a pattern or garment for a better fit. How to make bias binding they did in spades, but alterations were never mentioned aside from in the pattern there was often a line saying 'alteration line, make adjustments here' and only usually refered to lengthening or shortening.
So if alterations didnt exist you can bet your bottom dollar that we were never told to make a mock up muslin before starting.
Anyway, I spent a bit of time on ebay looking for some cheap fabric to make a wearable muslin, after all if you are going to all the trouble of fitting and adjusting, you might as well end up with something for all your hard work. Eager now to get started, and looking at all the muslins being posted for the Sew-along I hunted around in my stash and found a bit of red polycotton that in a previous life was probably a sheet or a table cloth. OK not a wearable muslin but enough to get me started.
And another first for me, I actually sewed along the seam allowance line instead of the 3/8 inch mark I usually sew along (worried about fit again).
I did have a few problems. I had read on another blog that it was important to mark the front and the back as they are slightly different. With my tailors chalk I marked a big F on the front piece. I sewed my seam, I pressed my skirt with my steam iron, I looked for the big chalked F. It had gone, washed away by the steam. And not knowing front from back did cause difficulties when it came to the waist band.
Talking of waist bands, I had followed the tutorial for adding one to the letter, so how come when I came to sew it onto my skirt it was too short? I still havent fathomed it out, my only thought is that when you extend the dart back onto the waistband the dart widens out as it is extended and instead it should be drawn straight up. This still isnt right as you need to cut and join the band on the angle in order to get the curve. In the end I moved the cut bit back to add back a bit and recut out the band. It seemed to work.
With bated breath I tried it on.
It was TOO BIG!!!!!!!!
I carefully measured myself again. I looked at the size chart. Then I looked at the finished garment size. I puzzled.
I have now concluded its not the size chart in the back of the book I should be going by, but the finished garment size because there is obviously a great deal of ease in these Colette patterns (that sounds good but I have no idea what it means) and by cutting out a size 18 and NOT altering it, it might just be the correct size.
Oh and I havent altered the length as that seems to be ok.