Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Sew What You See Part II- Fit and Finish

In part I of this post we discussed the concept of seeing shapes in our sewing. Now we need to take those shapes and adjust them to fit. One of the best places to look to find a garment to copy is your own closet. Look through your favorite clothing items and try to recreate those that fit you best. Get out a measuring tape and measure the width and length of those items you feel most comfortable in. Then compare the measurements of the garment you are making to those that you just measured. Make sure you make adjustments for seam allowances. Be careful to include both side seams, the hem, waistband if any, and any other seams, darts etc.

Now to take your garment from homemade to professional look at the details - the finishing items on the garment you are copying. Did they top stitch, use decorative stitching, press seams certain ways? Turn the garment inside out to see how the inside looks and sew yours to match theirs as closely as possible.

In the photo on the left you'll see how they top stitched 1/4 inch above the seam line where they attached the ruffle.

The photo on the right shows a slightly gathered elastic waistband with an invisible zipper and hook and eye closure on the left side of the skirt. You'll be amazed at what a difference these small finishing touches make. Not only will you have a garment that has the same fit it will also have the same look.

In part III- we'll talk about sewing a particular design element from what you see.

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