MARY’S ORDER OF EVENTS

Mary Baxter is undoubtedly one of our Atlantic Sewing Guild’s most experienced fitting gurus.  She proves to us that there is no body quirk that can’t be adjusted for and she is unfailingly generous in helping us figure out where and how to work on our patterns.  Most of us aim for a great fit in our garment sewing, so we asked Mary if she would share a few thoughts on the order she uses to make well-fitting outfits.

A few ideas from Mary:

I have been asked in what order do I alter a pattern?  Before I answer that question, here’s one to answer first:

How to choose the right pattern size?

The majority of us work from a purchased pattern. Most pattern companies follow a standard body measurement and a minimum fitting ease added of: bust 2.5″, waist 1″, hip 2″.

Body measurements + ease (fitting ease & design ease) = fashion silhouette.

The finished garment measurements on the pattern clue you in as to how much ease is included in the garment. You can establish the amount of ease you prefer by measuring your favourite garments.

Fitting is easier if you chose the right sized pattern based on 3 measurements:

1. bust: patterns are typically designed for a B cup (with the exception of patterns that provide various bust sizes). If you are larger than the standard B cup and your bust measurement is larger by  2″ (or more)  than your upper chest measurement, then use the upper chest measurement. The upper chest reflects the body’s frame, a better fit will be achieved and the garment will hang nicely from the the shoulders.

2. waist: place the waist where you prefer to wear your pants or skirts and use this measurement.

3. hip: use measurement at the fullest part. This measurement is often a standard 7- 9″ below the  waist but may be higher if there is  a full tummy.

For a good fit, trust your measurements. Then compare your measurements to the pattern, make alterations and then fine tune when fitting.

A current, comprehensive measurement chart is an essential tool for fitting. Always trust your measurements and measure both sides of your body in case there is any asymmetry.  Fitting takes time but once you have determined your body shape/measurements, it becomes easier to make the pattern adjustments.106-measurement-chart-01

(One of our own members, Barbara Emodi has two excellent articles in past issues of Threads magazine. How to Take Measurements is in issue #106 and How To Measure a Pattern to Assess Fit is in #112.)

Pattern Adjustments

Keep the original pattern intact and start by copying (tracing) the main pieces of the pattern. (I will not be explaining how to go about the alterations. There are various methods and articles on-line or in sewing books that cover this process.)

I start the alteration process with the length, both front and back which includes:

1. shoulder to bust in front, shoulder to waist in back

2. bust to waist

3. waist to hip

4. hip to hem, front and back

5. sleeve, shoulder to elbow, elbow to wrist

Next, I adjust the width:

1. back ( narrow or broad)

2. high round back ( if your clothing pulls towards the back & off the shoulder)

3. shoulder ( narrow, wide and slope)

4. upper chest ( narrow or wide)

5. bust (possibly a large bust adjustment)

6. waist

7. tummy & hip

8. sleeve

After these adjustments are done, pin the darts and then the seams wrong sides together. Carefully try the pattern on to assess and refine.

Make a muslin

Take the fitting one step further: make a muslin out of fabric similar to the fashion fabric you will be using for your garment.  After the fit has been fine tuned you can either take the muslin apart and use it as a pattern or transfer the final adjustments from the muslin onto your paper pattern.  Then cut your altered pattern from your fashion fabric.

The alteration and fitting process takes time but the end result is a well fitted garment and a huge sense of satisfaction.

Thanks, Mary for a very helpful article!

Next Atlantic Sewing Guild meeting is  Tuesday, February 14, 7pm at St. Theresa’s, corner of Dublin & North Streets, Halifax

The Great Halifax Sewing Bee! April Meeting

ASG’s April meeting features The Great Halifax Sewing Bee, an evening inspired by the BBCTwo’s popular show, The Great British Sewing Bee. With three seasons under its belt, the British sewing show has a huge international fan-base. 

To pique your interest, I’ve provided links to two shows, the first from Series 1 (Season 1 in North American television speak) and and the second from Series 3. (You can find most episodes on the Internet by Googling The Great British Sewing Bee.)

Two women popular in the sewing world, Ann Rowley and Tilly Walnes (Tilly of Tilly and the Buttons), were contestants in Series 1.
Series 1, Episode One  

While every series/season has featured men sewists, Series 3 is outstanding for male representation.
Series 3, Episode One



From the spark of an idea to a full meeting’s program, the ASG Executive have worked hard to pull this event together. We hope our mini-adaption of the Great British Sewing Bee will make for a lively and entertaining evening. 

Please note: Due to time limitations, there will not be any Show and Tell, and the library will be closed, for this meeting only.

For all the posts related to this event, past and future, please click here.

National Sewing Circle Website

Beverly in the Guild wanted to share an online sewing resource with you all called the National Sewing Circle (nationalsewingcircle.com).

National Sewing Circle Screen Capture (click to enlarge)
National Sewing Circle Screen Capture (click to enlarge)

It is a site of sewing videos, with a blog, projects and things you can purchase. Some of the content is free, but some is for members only.

You can get a free newsletter emailed to you if you sign up that way, perhaps to find out more about things before deciding whether or not to commit to a membership.

For those of you looking for new online sewing resources, this site “seams” to be well worth a look! 🙂

Thank you, Beverly!

Welcome to the New ASG Online Library!

Hello ladies and gentle men,

I don’t know how excited you ever get about reading a blog post, or writing one, but I’m about as excited to write this one as I’ve ever been for a blog post… and this isn’t even my blog! 🙂

May I introduce to you our new Atlantic Sewing Guild online library!

That’s right. I said “library”. This is a free collection of books, magazines and other digital press content I have started to aggregate on the ISSUU site that is also available as an app for Apple and Android.

What is ISSUU, you ask?

In short, it’s Pinterest where the “pins” are digital “books”!

If that doesn’t raise any addiction concerns, let me just say now this is your first and only warning about it.

On ISSUU, you can find normally paper content in digital format, as well as digital only content. There’s over 15 million documents. It’s easy to read and scan through. Most of it is high quality such that you can zoom in quite a bit and not be limited to a tablet, phone or even desktop monitor screen rendition of the content. You can collect these documents in “stacks” the way you pin on “boards” on Pinterest, to organize them. You can “follow” people who collect documents as you do, or just some stacks they have, to have them find new documents you might be interested in. You can scan documents in to post, or find a digital copy somewhere to post. You can “Like” documents, comment on them and do other things as well. But that’s all for the account owners.

What I’m here to tell you about is the collection I started for us and all the content you can start going through already.

There are 15 stacks of books and magazines on various fashion and sewing related content. Some will take a while to read, while others you might just want to skim through. And if nothing is of interest to you, just wait. More will be added. Perhaps in the near future, we could get group contributors, a feature not yet available unlike on Pinterest, I don’t believe. I just discovered this site 24 hours ago and had the idea for this library to share with you and others who learn of it. It’s gotten big acclaim from sources such as TIME magazine and the Webby awards!

You do not need an ISSUU account to read any content or access our library. However, you will if you want to collect your own “books”, or follow our library and/or others’ to see what’s newly found and/or published, organize things in your own way, and so on. A free account can be had which has all the features a general reader might care for, but it is up to you if you want to sign up.

So without further delay, could someone please hand me the duck-billed scissors and I will cut this ribbon.

(snap, snap, snap photo-op)

Ladies and gentle men… our

ASG Fashion and Sewing Online Library

(there is now a link under the Library tab at upper right of our site to jump to our online library should you need to find it again in the future, or just bookmark it on your browser)

—————————————————————————————

Who wants to be our digital librarian?

This ISSUU site and library I started is a vast and wonderful resource. Unfortunately, I neither have the time nor the knowledge of all the good resources out there to try and track down (if it were on ISSUU, like Threads magazine is not) over time aside from a bit here and there.

So does anybody in the Guild want to take on this role? I’ll give first offer to our current librarians should they want to do this. Otherwise, email the ASG address and maybe we can set up an arrangement where more than one person can contribute.

Start your own organization’s online library

This idea to pool online resources for an organization can be repeated by others, of course. Specifically thinking of some of our Guild members who are in other “guilds” or organizations like quilting, lace, crochet, knitting, crafts, etc. they might want to start a similar library, or show someone this post and get them to start their own library (or find someone who can). Same goes for any readers of this post, too, of course.

I love it when I get an idea that can be spread and be useful to many others. 🙂

Enjoy!

Minh

Seamwork Magazine Resource

Mary wanted to share this online resource with members.

In their words, Seamwork is a new online pattern magazine bringing you two beautiful projects every month for just $6, along with articles, techniques, and creative ideas that make sewing a pleasure. This month’s feature is bras and lingerie.

This link will be added to our site under Patterns and Reviews, under the Links menu.

Thanks, Mary!

Big List of Online Canadian Fabric, Pattern and Notion Stores

Thanks to our member Kathleen for finding this huge list of online Canadian fabric, pattern and notion stores from The Finished Garment blog.

At the time of this writing, their list was last updated on January 6, 2015. I imagine they will update it as time goes by.

For your future reference, you can either bookmark the page the link above goes to. Or if you use our site, it is now an item in the drop down LINKS menu at upper right of our site. Click on the Canadian Online Stores choice and it will take you there!

22 Fashion Infographics You Might Want to Have

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope it will be a good sewing one for you!

First post of the year is this great post I found via Pinterest. The original article states you need these infographics in your life, but I think I can do without the harem pants one… being a guy. lol

They have some fantastic infographics, though, like this one below.

I hope you’ll like the rest (click on link above) as much!

Types of Textiles

Class and Learning Options Outside the Guild

Courtesy of research by Tory and Marcia…

Guild Classes

The Guild had just announced our classes for 2014-15. These two are guaranteed, plus other potential ones to be determined.

  1. Pocket Techniques, with Anneke Henderson (Oct 4, 2014)
  2. Making a Body Double, with Josée (Nov 15, 2014)

However, there are many other options for classes around the Halifax area, as well as online. There are also many other learning resources besides classes, where there is no interaction involved but just instructions. The following list of sewing related resources might interest you.

Local Classes (Halifax area)

You might consider these local options for classes in the Halifax Regional Municipality and Nova Scotia area:

Continental Classes

If you were willing to travel for some classes, treating it as either a serious trip or vacation, you might want to consider these options:

Online Classes and General Instructions

These sites offer classes and/or general instructions online:

There are also plenty of other YouTube channels you may want to search for to find instructional videos. For video instruction, you might actually be better off searching from the YouTube site, rather than using a search engine like Google, Yahoo or Bing.

Blogs

Blogs tend to be are more personally produced instruction, compared to business or professional like instruction, although some blogs are quite phenomenal. They also tend to be more a mish mash of topics and may not be as well organized to find specific items like sewing instruction videos. But those things can add a personal touch and connection business sites tend not to have, and be more entertaining with a real life touch to them. It really depends on what you like. Here are some Guild Members like a lot:

When you read blogs, be sure to look around, often on the side, for links to the authors’ favourite sites, blogs and such. Some will likely be related to sewing and they can serve as your lead to find out more of what is out there! If you liked the authors’ blog, chances are, you’ll like his/her taste for other enjoyable and/or useful blogs, too!

Share Your Favourite Sewing Resources with Us!

If you know of great class and/or instructional resources not mentioned here, please do let us know. We will update this post, as well as our Classes page on this site. Thank you.

The Shop Company Dress Forms and Mannequins

Fay W. of the Shop Company in New Jersey recently reached out to us to tell us about dress forms, mannequins, racks, display cases, among other fixtures and supplies they sell for sewing use, trade shows, displays and so on. They are “an online retailer that sells exceedingly competitively priced dress forms and mannequins”. They’ve worked primarily with shops in the past, but wanted to reach out to more sewers of the world and found us!

They also have a blog on topics related to products they sell.

I hope you will visit their site and see if what they have to offer is of interest to you and/or others you know. A link to their site and blog has been put in our site’s Links menu under Other Links.

Please note this is neither an endorsement nor review of The Shop Company and their products, merely an announcement to make our readers aware of a company selling products in which they may be interested.

The True Story of Coco Chanel on PBS

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Click to enlarge

Thursday night (Mar 27), 9 PM our time (Atlantic Standard Time), WGBH (PBS Boston). That would be Channel 4 on cable for some. Check your TV package for what it is on your TV.

From the Extraordinary Women series, they are featuring Coco Chanel and her real story, not the carefully crafted public image one.

Sounds like a fantastic story of an icon, but probably not the one you know unless you had done a lot of research!

And if that doesn’t satisfy you, Wallis Simpson and Agatha Christie follows!

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Click to enlarge

 

p.s. That quote is why you should always insist on getting the best things in life. 🙂