Friday, October 28, 2011


Just popping by to let you know I am still working on those ballet costumes!
Just to prove it, here's a nice gusset in a ballet sleeve. It is basically the same concept as my regular grown on gusset for a two piece sleeve, just with more range of motion. I had a great talk with my colleague Evan before I started this project as he has oodles of experience cutting for ballet. I took his advice to heart and I have been very happy with the results. Thanks Evan!

In case you were wondering, the under sleeve gusset is basically as high as the top of the sleeve head

Now we just have to get the two extra costumes done that were added and soon they will be ready to be shipped.
I'll be back soon.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

jeans draft back

So I finished the draft of the jeans back.
On the second page the instructions continue for the front and then into the instructions for the back before you get to the section headed "underside".
Why did they do that?
Hard to know, so the instructions 17 from 4... and 18 from 4... and locate 19 should really be in the underside section. Never mind.
One thing I thought odd was to use 1/4 waist size to locate point 18. Can't say I've seen that before and they don't explain it so carry on anyway and find 19 in order to develop your seat angle.

I think the rest of the instructions are OK to follow and this is what I ended up with.
So what is strange?
No dart. Not even an indication of a dart and with an 8 inch waist to hip difference I expected something.
The other thing I find odd is the look of the height and angle of point 21. It looks short and trucated and the angle where it intersects the waistline is not at 90 degrees. More about this in a minute.

I measured the pattern at the hip level, using a line 1/6 scale up from the crotch or fork line on the fronts and across the hip on the back(dash line) and measured the pattern at 19 7/8 inch, which is slightly less that the actual hip measurement, so no ease.
In the description it says "the main thing to be considered in the preparation of the draft of jean is to cut to fit the figure closely at hips seat and upper legs without being uncomfortable."
I guess that means no ease.

I measured the waist and came to 16 1/2 inches on the half which gives a waist of 33 inches. The back waist is 8 1/2 inches and perhaps that half inch is to be eased into the waist band to act as the missing dart. Maybe you should fold out the 1/2 inch to shape the yoke? Well they don't mention doing anything with it at all.

If the waist is eased that will hollow out the back waist line (that is what happens when you ease a line in, it hollows out) so that the intersection of CB and back waist line are closer to a 90 degree angle.

If you don't have a 90 degree angle at the CB your CB seam forms a hollow vee at the waist line.
So what to do? You could raise the back waist so that it intersects the CB run at a 90 degree angle which gives more coverage over the seat when bending (orange line).You could hollow out the waistline a bit as you ease it in and leave the CB run as is. I guess that would depend on fitting it on someone to see if it worked. I would cut on the extra myself, as it is easier to remove fabric you don't want than to wish you had it afterwards.

I make the same point regarding the CF which also should meet the waist line at a 90 degree angle otherwise the waistline vees there too.

Lastly I cut out the fronts and marked the seam allowances and laid the inseams together to see the seam run. (Looks ok if you can decide what line they mean for you to use as CF)

I also line up the side seams which again, don't run smoothly into each other which begs the question of how to handle that when sewing and if you follow the given line, will it sit nicely on the body, or should those seams also be trued up so they run together more harmoniously?

So, interesting. Can you tell where all the shaping needed for an eight inch waist to hip difference has gone?
A little in the CF, a lot in the side seams, if you put the pattern together at the hip area you can see the large dart takeout, the rest in the CB which isn't really as much as I imagined for a pair of jeans. I'm not sure how I feel about this- I'd likely shift things around a bit.

I would have expected a CB line a bit more angled in a pair of jeans, it puts the CB more on the bias and allows the bias to mould around the seat a bit. They also don't mention the size of the thigh which is a measurement that is useful in closely fitted jeans. The thigh size and the CB line angle and length are all related, and affect one another.

I think that if I was going to try these out, I'd cut a toile in denim and leave ample inlays or seam allowances in the areas of concern.

I'm off to do my fittings tomorrow, so I may not surface for a few days. I'd love to read your thoughts on this draft, especially if you have tried it out.

Monday, October 10, 2011

jeans draft front

So I have drafted the fronts of the jeans, as instructed.
Beginning with the crotch or "fork line", at "0".
0-1 is the rise , less the waistband which I decided was 1 and 1/2 inches deep.
the instructions progress logically until you get to
"draw the fly seam"
Looking at the illustration of the draft makes this instruction confusing.
So I left it for a moment and went to the next few instructions
0-8 to find the hip point
9 from 7 to get the waist point
11 is 1 inch above the fork line and 1/2 inch from the fly seam grow on fly at point 10-11.

Ok so this is irritating.
There is 1/2 inch seam allowance allowed, so you can see the dotted line inside the lower area of the fly line that is drawn from 6 indicating the seam allowance. At 11 it turns abruptly into the solid line from 11 to 10.
10 is 1/2 inch in from 7 so one assumes that is seam allowance.
Then you see the fly line from 6 running into a point above 11 in a small dotted line, that seems to run into the line 10- 11 as well.
It makes it very confusing to determine where the centre front line is if you didn't want a grow on fly.
The abrupt angle formed at 11 isn't pleasing to me either.

I am very opinionated about drafts and I think they should be clear.
This one doesn't get any marks for clarity.

What else can I say at this point? I think that there will need to be some truing up of angles at some point, but I will draft the back next ( I think there is something odd going on there as well), so I'll go onward and try to make sense of it all at the end.

Friday, October 7, 2011

reading the draft

Well, the first thing to notice on the first page of the draft is the rise, and the difference between the waist and hip measurement.

First, the rise.
Obviously in comparison to the last draft I talked about, the rise on the jeans pattern is much shorter. The rise on the trousers was 13 inches and the jeans rise is 10 1/2 inches.
Jeans generally sit below the natural waist. How much below is a style decision.
That makes sense.

The next thing that caught my eye was the difference between the waist measurement of 32 inches and the hip at 40 inches.
This seems odd. That is an 8 inch difference. That is about the standard difference for women.

The last pair we looked at had a difference of 6 inches, and since jeans sit lower than the natural waist, where the body is generally bigger, I would have expected a smaller difference not a greater one.

Which begs the question: What is a standard difference?
The number we have for this draft in metric are: waist 81.28cm and hip 101.6cm (20cm difference)

I checked in Metric pattern cutting for menswear which is close to the era we are dealing with.

The chart for regular mature figures:
natural waist of 82 cm, hip 100cm, (18cm difference)
trouser waist (4cm below natural waist) 85 cm

For Athletic figures:
natural waist 83cm, hip 102cm, (19cm difference)
trouser waist 86cm (4cm below natural waist)

So, what to think? It could be based on a real measurement rather than a standard. It indicates to me that there will be some accomodation in the draft for a large seat.

carrying on,
there is a 1/2 inch seam allowance allowed throughout the draft.
That is a change from the previous standard of 1/4 inch. Keep that in mind.

Next step is to start drafting.

jeans draft 1970

I am waiting for ballet fittings, so I thought it would be interesting to look at another draft for trousers.
This draft for jeans comes from the Tailor and Cutter of 1970. Again, thanks to the Cutter and Tailor forum for the following draft.
I preread this and I have noticed some odd things. But for now, I will post the draft here and have a read through it for yourself.
Drafting and thoughts to follow.