Friday, November 16, 2012

The B5814 Bodice Muslin!

Now may be the time to mention: Butterick 5814 is not a modest dress. (That's an understatement.) I don't wear a lot of really low-cut garments, so this muslin took some getting used to. I made sure to press under the seam allowances at the top, so I could really see the actual neckline, and then I showed Jeff the results.

Me: Is this too, um, revealing?
Jeff: Nope!

Men are so predicable sometimes.

But let's back up. I did have to make a couple adjustments to the muslin. When I first put it on, it looked like this. (Please excuse the cell phone photo.)

As you can see, the sleeves would not stay up at all. The fix for this took a couple steps. First, taking in the raglan sleeve seam on the front. See where it's pinned below?

On the pattern, I just shaved off 1/4" on that seam--on the bodice pieces and the front side of the sleeve. The revisions are in orange marker below.


The next adjustment I made was to add a seam to the top of the sleeve, so that I could curve it to fit my shoulder curve. See the red arrow in the photo below? That's how I want the top of my sleeve to curve.

This involved splitting the sleeve pattern piece into a front and back, drawing a new curved seamline, and then adding a seam allowance.


Here's how the new sleeve front piece looks.

When I pinned these changes on the muslin, the sleeves stayed up easily. Yay!

Other than that, I'm very happy with the fit.

I also checked the skirt measurements on the pattern tissue to make sure the amount of ease was correct for me.

I've also been working on a tutorial for adding a 3/4 length sleeve!


P.S. Several of you have been asking about the right bra to wear with this dress. In the photos I'm wearing a low-cut bra with wide-set straps, but they kept peeking out a bit. I would suggest either adding bra carriers to the sleeves, or wearing a strapless, waist-length bustier bra.



47 comments:

  1. Hi looks great. Any chance you could do a tutorial on how to put 3/4 sleeves into the Colette crepe dress? Thanks

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  2. Very revealing but lovely lines, very worthy of any potential Joan or Marilyn out there. The bodice actually makes for a very nice looking top too.

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  3. You look very vavavavoomish! Seriously. I love the fit on you.

    3/4 sleeves on the Crepe would be a great dress, I think. I'm already going to make it in a light wool for winter. Now I reall want those sleeves!

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  4. Yay about the longer sleeves! I love this dress but hate my upper arms, and would seriously love to be able to add 3/4 sleeves to it. Thanks so much for the walk-thru on how to adjust pattern. You rock. For so many reasons.

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  5. That is lovely!I could see why you were wondering if it was too revealing but it shows your tattoos beautifully!

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    1. Funny, I was thinking your tattoos make it LESS revealing.

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  6. Looks really good so far! The neckline might be low-cut but looks absolutely fabulous with your tattoos!

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  7. I hope I got enough extra fabric for my dress to add the longer sleeves. I guess it won't be ready for this year's Christmas party, but it will give me lots of time to fix it up for next year. For a second, I wondered if you showed the fitting to my husband. He fits squarely into the predictable man hole.

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  8. I passed up buying this dress because of the sleeve length (got your coat pattern though!). And I have to laugh about the low cut reaction. I bought a rather inexpensive low cut knit dress for a vacation this past year (which I never ended up wearing for vacation). It was adorable with kimono sleeves. Much later I planned to wear it out with my guy and asked the same thing you did. He had to pick his jaw up off the floor. This is a man who see's me change every day. Flash a little cleavage and they go all funny in the head. It's pretty cute though, those kinds of reactions.

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  9. LOVE LOVE LOVE the 3/4 length sleeve. Please, please spend some time teaching us how to make that alteration.

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  10. Those 3/4 length sleeves are really nice!

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  11. This looks amazing, I'm really looking forward to seeing the finished piece. And I love the way it frames your tattoos!

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  12. I love the look , and the 3/4 sleeve -- but would there be a way to raise the neckline at all?

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  13. The changes you made for a better fit look good!!! I vote yes on the 3/4 sleeves tutorial.

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  14. I'm with Jeff on this one! The neckline looks really gah-mazing! Revealing, yes, but just the right amount. And it frames your tattoos Gorgeously.

    I also vote yes on a 3/4 sleeve tutorial. (Partly because I'm hoping I might adapt the technique to work with the sheath bodice in your book!)

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    1. I totally agree, I don't think there is necessarily a certain point where something becomes "slutty." You need to know how to pull off a look, for example if you purposely tie up your shirt to show stomach, that looks kind of off, but Gertie puts a lot of thought into pulling off her looks correctly. I wish I could know how to make anything look good, lol

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  15. If you have a garment with a fitted bodice that has BOTH a V-front AND a V-back, you ARE going to have problems with the sleeve caps staying up on your shoulders! I would recommend using one's BRA STRAPS as an adjunct to keeping the sleeve caps in place on the shoulders! Doing this also helps keep the bra straps out of sight; this is done by making little "chain loops" to fasten around the strap. They also sell them pre-made, as I am sure everybody already knows! It takes a bit of tinkering to get them right, but I have always found the result satisfactory. One really needs a bra with this dress anyway, so might as well put the straps to good use!

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  16. I was going to mention the same thing as Sufiya: No amount of tinkering can make the shoulder straps or sleeves in a design like this stay up on their own. If I remember your introduction do this dress correctly, that fitted bodice is going to be boned, making it effectively a strapless dress with decorative 'sleeves' put on.
    You can alter it so they stay up when you're standing straight but they will slide down when you start doing such crazy things as moving your arms about and, especially, sitting down.
    I've done wedding dress alterations for while and we would suggest to customers to stick those sleeves on using lingerie tape (a transparent, double sided adhesive made for the very purpose of sticking cloth to skin), but in this case, Sufiya's suggestion could work very well.

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  17. Gertie, you look fantastic! Yep, agreeing with Jeff here, and really - they showcase your tattoos beautifull!

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  18. I'm just asking this out of curiosity, not out of criticism, but why are you having to make so many alterations to a pattern that you designed yourself? Shouldn't those tweaks (like adding a shoulder seam) be part of the pattern as written? Please excuse my lack of knowledge on pattern making, I'm genuinely curious!!

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    1. I was wondering the same thing

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    2. It's because I draft and fit the original pattern to a size 10, which is Butterick's sample size. When I make it the first time for myself, it's just like anyone else making a pattern for the first time--I might have to make tweaks for fit, proportion, etc.

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    3. Thanks for this answer. I didn't get it either!
      Also, I don't have any tattoos, but I think yours look amazing in that low neck line :0)

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  19. It looks cute so far! I was wondering if the criss-cross would make boobs look uneven, but it doesn't! It's hard to tell on the small busted model on the envelope.

    An unrelated question.... What is that foot you are using to sew the casing channels on the peasant dress? Do I need it to make that dress? I an really interested in taking that course.

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    1. It'a blind hem foot and it helps to get an even edgestitch. It's not necessary, just helpful.

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    2. Oh! Thanks Gertie! I have a blind hem foot, but it doesn't have a roller thingie on it. Yours looks cooler.

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  20. Sorry for the double post! Can you please delete one? ...and this one too? Lol. What a dork!

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  21. The bodice is awsome, and it looks nice in both short and longer sleeves. There is a sleeve quite smaller than the other, though. Check it out. Curously, it happens the same in your book cover's dress. I hope I'm not being negative... since it is a muslin fit, and it has still an easy solution.
    The dress is going to be gorgeous on you!

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    1. Thanks! I think the sleeve thing is because of the way I'm standing/the perspective of the photos.

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  22. Wow! Nicely done! I passed the pattern up when it was on sale at my local fabric store because the line art and photos didn't do it justice (plus, I'm not sure how to go about a FBA with this cut - pivot and slide as usual?), but next time it's on sale, I'm picking it up!

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    1. I also passed on it because I wasn't sure about the FBA. I'd love to make it but afraid it will end in ill fitting disappointment!

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    2. I passed too because of the FBA. It's a lovely dress, but the FBA would be awfully complicated. It looks like you would have to do two different methods for each side of the bodice. For one side, I would probably add volume to the folds and gathers, but it looks as if the other side has a dart of some kind which might need some variation of the traditional method. I think this is just not a style for full busted people. Plus, the bra difficulties would get expensive.

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  23. That is a sexy neckline - if you got, flaunt it :) I don't think it's too revealing, I mean it is low, but still remains classy and elegant.

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  24. Hi Gertie! I like following you through your fitting alterations, and I would enjoy seeing the 3/4 length sleeve alteration. One quick question - could you have made the cap sleeves fit without the added seam by just folding that area out (kind of like a dart that goes all the way across and therefore folds itself out)? Thanks for the tips!

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  25. I really love the look of the 3/4 sleeve....really pretty. And of course your hubby would say the front isn't too low.....my husband is the same lol. Pop on a push up bra and his eyes would be as big as saucers! Heehee ;)

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  26. Loving the 3/4 sleeve on this dress!

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  27. When should you put the extra work in for making a muslin, and if real muslin is not available what is the best cheap fabric to use?

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    1. You can use an old sheet.

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  28. Very inspiring! I can't wait to get near a sewing machine again soon. :)

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  29. Wow this dress is so amazing
    Yes PLEASE do a 3/4 sleeve tutorial!

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  30. This looks amazing with your tattoos!! I love sewing blogs.. Im a new sewer and blogs are so much fun:)
    trying to start one up...

    http://becstiches.blogspot.com.au/

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  31. Looks like some hard work, but very well done!

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  32. Aren't they just? My husband would say its not too revealing even if my actual boobs were showing! I have found a better question is "would you like other men to see me in this?"

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  33. Hi! My name is Carina and I live in Brazil. I ordered and just received your dress pattern. I would appreciate a lot if you could post your tutorial for 3/4 sleeves as I would like to make a winter version for a wedding.... Love your blog and your new hair is awesome! xoxo, Carina

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Thanks for your comments; I read each and every one! xo Gertie

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