I knew it

Guess what, I am a non-standard body shape.  Oh My God!

Hah.  My point actually is that until this week I had been dithering about where to begin with my mission to learn to fit garments to my oddball body shape.  I have an ad hoc idea about my quirky bits (!) but haven’t a particularly clear picture of what I might need to alter around.  Frankly its all been rather overwhelming.

Well, the kick in the pants to get on with it has been from Lena who’s blog I discovered not so long ago.  She is very kindly offering a free bodice block plus free jersey lessons to folk who subscribe to her newsletters.  Hey, wow I’m in (you have until January 31st to be in too).

Bodice Block from thesewingspace.com

I have the size 12 block which I need to alter to fit and it sounds like (with some advice from Lena) I will need to work on adjustments for ….. (deep breath) small bust, short back, sway back, wide back and square/wide shoulders.  That’s just for my top half and there are bound to be others.  By crikey!

Are you an odd ball body shape too?  I should re-phrase – do you have many alterations you need to be mindful of when you sew a blouse/dress for yourself?

T’will be brilliant when I can pull out the already fitted block and create something just for me.  I will, probably concurrently, also go the route of trial and error with muslins for patterns that take my fancy, but at least I can apply to that what I learn on the block.

Oh, and then I wanna do all that too for my lower half.

I want it ALL.

Ed: added pretty pictures to boring words!

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10 Responses to I knew it

  1. Tanit-Isis says:

    You know, I never thought I was terribly oddly proportioned until I started sewing… but my alterations list just keeps getting longer. Petite the bodice. Lengthen sleeves (and pantlegs). Swayback adjustment. Square shoulder adjustment. Small bust adjustment (sometimes). I really need to get a more general bodice block for me…

    • Isn’t this fun? We’re all describing ourselves as oddly shaped….. I wanna know whether there are many folk out there, other than those pesky fit models, who more often than not don’t have to do alterations out of the envelope. D’ya reckon they exist?? :o)

  2. Rosy says:

    Well! This shows that each of us is simply unique and unrepeatable … I see it. My “crime” are many, broad shoulders, oversized waist, ass completely flat, but sewing is wonderful to know to adjust that.
    I’ve “built” a basic pattern adjusted to my body on heavy paper, so when I start a new piece, I begin to make changes from this basic pattern.

    • Hi Rosy and happy new year. I dream of having a basic pattern built just as you have. Oh how wonderful. I have decided to work on a trousers block asap too – oh I am going to be busy finding out what my ‘crimes’ are too.

  3. Me too…full bust adjustment, low waist, small back, sloping shoulders with one slightly lower than the other….and that´s jsut the top half! Will have to check out the blog you mention, thanks for that 🙂

    • Hi Tanya. Man, I have gotta look up small back adjustments, along with many others and my book will surely have it. Maybe I need it? So much to learn…I am so excited. And welcome to the the band of mis-fits! We are in excellent company :o), as you can see above!!!

  4. I have a long list too: long back, full bust are musts and frequently narrow shoulders, forward shoulders, and my back is weirdly narrower than my front.

    Having your own bodice block sounds great but so far I’ve chickened out of all the work involved. Hope yours goes well and tell us all about it!

  5. Isn’t everybody a non-standard body shape?? Well, except for fitting models whose job it is to be exactly proportioned. As far as my fitting issues, I KNOW I have: small bust, large rib cage (thanks to 12 years competitive swimming), long torso and relatively low waist, sway back, straight hip, tilted pelvis (long back rise and short front rise), and saddlebags. I also have relatively short, stout legs but they don’t really affect my sewing unless I’m trying to fit something tight around my calves.

    I get around adjusting for my small bustline by sewing a smaller size and avoiding princess seams — gathers in particular are my friend. Long torso is easily corrected by cutting at the waistline and adding an inch or two to the pattern. With skirts, I look for darts in back but not in front and I sometimes sew a smaller size in the front (i.e., size 10 front with size 12 back). I’ll also correct slight hem discrepancies by taking up a deeper hem in the front. I’m still working on pants fitting, although I know to add at least a half inch to every center back seam or it will pull on my back waistband.

    When I used to go shopping and clothes didn’t fit, I assumed it was my fault for having a hopelessly nonstandard body. Now I look at it like a seamstress — what’s missing here? Is this one of the usual fitting issues for me or something different? It’s really helped me to get a lot less frustrated.

    • Oh thank god we are not exactly proportioned because life would be rather boring, and how wonderful that you are as non-standard as I am! Admittedly I don’t even know what a tilted pelvis is, I need to look it up, but then I have a book full of variously worded types of non-standard thingies each with a couple of ways to alter to, um, accommodate them. Its going to be a very interesting process getting on with fitting this ‘ere block, and I can’t wait to start.

      Thank you for the tips on fitting for a small bust – I will try that for sure and I guess I will have to come to terms with (i.e. practice) a bunch of stuff. I can probably reverse the long torso tips to cater for my short one – I’ve already done it with knit tops, depending on the top! I am going to have to re-read your comments too – lots to take in. Thank you so much.

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