Wednesday, November 11, 2009

custom jacket pattern

OK, I wish I had more time.
Ten weeks of kitchen renovations and cooking outdoors takes a toll on time to blog.
A big project that involves administration, buying, cutting and sewing at the same time takes a toll on the time to blog.
What else? well how about sewing tests - I do the sewing tests for prospective employees which involves cutting bodices and then guiding the candidates through an afternoon of sewing, instructing, correcting, taking notes and rating their performance for management. More time.

Add in a private client and I have barely time to function.

Oh well,
I have had the pattern made for a while and have had a fitting in a mock-up and I am at the point of correcting the pattern and cutting in the real fabric, but I still haven't had time to sit down and write something intelligent to explain the pattern making process for this gent. It is generally so much easier to do than describe how to do things! but I am going to try with the few lucid thoughts I have available right now.

The back is a fairly standard shape-FYI: this version of the pattern doesn't have any seam allowance on the shoulders or armhole-I'll explain later.

There are many ways of approaching the front to accommodate this man's shape- I know- and this is just one way of thinking about it.

I have drafted the front, raising the neck point and shoulder equally above where they normally would be. How much? Well, I use the nape to CF waist measurement I took on the client. I rough in the normal front shoulder line in the draft to start.

The natural waist on my pattern is about 1 inch to 1 1/2 inches below the drafted waist line. I measure the back neck, then place that amount on the natural waist at CF and measure up the full amount to the position of the neck point. This gives the extra length in the front which is needed. I construct the new shoulder line in parallel to the "normal". I continue with the gorge line and lapel from there.
I don't however, need all the extra armhole size, and I can remove some of the excess now in the armhole by darting into the gorge line, as well as down through the body as I close out the excess in the armhole.
I measured the waist of the pattern and decided that I still needed to add width for his belly, so I cut open the pattern from hem to mid lapel and added more.

The problem with dealing with a belly is, as you add width where you need it, you gain an excess of fabric below the belly which needs to be reduced- hence the dart into the pocket. I cut into the pattern at the pocket line, then took out the excess (determined by eye) at the hem, thus opening up the pocket line into a rather large dart. (Plaids would not be good here)
I knew from fitting one of his own jackets on him, that I could pin out a good inch at the pocket to correct the hang of the jacket, and I have at least that in the pattern above. It may prove to be too big a dart for its length, but I will leave it for now.

I think I may have been a bit generous with the front length, (and I was proved correct in the fitting) but I went forward into the toile thinking that it is much easier to pin out excess, rather than either guessing how much more is needed or undoing the shoulders to drop them at the fitting.

Next, the toile.

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