Sunday, November 28, 2010

Further Blue Book thoughts

I was going to title this "final thoughts" but that sounds:
a) too morbid and b) too final- there are always more thoughts.

On the left I have pinned out the excess length along the neckline. It is about 1" (2.5cm). That amount would need to be shrunk in to get the neckline to lay flat against the body. It does create a full chest which is the fashion of the day. I have concerns about being able to shrink that much in with the fabrics we usually are given to work with.

On the right, I have unpinned that dart and smoothed the neckline flat to show you what happens then at the shoulder. This of course throws all the excess fabric from the neckline into the armhole-(sorry, no picture). Not the best look either.

As I have said, I don't use this draft as a basis for my work but I wanted to show what results you can expect to get from it.
I think it is important to understand the mechanics of a draft and then you can make an informed choice about what you would want to use for a project. You may want to use it as is or you may want to adapt or modify it to work for you.

Further, thoughts/modifying options:

This basic draft is shown without a front chest dart, and I think that is a nice period look, but some of that excess in the front neckline could be transferred to a chest dart, which would be acceptable (front darts are indicated in the "novelty vest" section).
You could move the neck point closer to the centre front line, reducing the length along the front edge and opening up the armhole a bit. That would mean less shrinking required in the neck and maybe requiring a little shrinking in the armhole.
Or you could use a bit of both.

Whether you choose to use one draft or another, my purpose in teaching is to look at different systems of drafting, analyse their merits and deficiencies, and to look at the styles of the day.
I try to teach a bit about the mechanics of the drafts so that the student can understand and develop their own framework for drafting and apply it when interpreting costume designs.

On top of all this, just in case you think we've been merrily drafting away just for drafting sake, we've been drafting different period styles for our fitting volunteers and making up toiles and trying them on real live people.
I can't thank them enough for doing this- coming in and being measured and fit, standing there patiently while we fit and discuss their body shape and how to make the alterations required.
Thanks to Steve, Kon, Blake and Matty.

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