Other Interests

Making Muslins Vogue 1385

This post should be called "Building Patience". I have had too many garments that I have sewn and not liked the fit. Then, I discovered that really good sewers make a muslin, or a test garment that undergoes many fitting sessions to get the proper fit.

1. You should make it out of similar, but cheaper fabric than the fashion fabric.

  • I bought 5 meters of real muslin $12.99 per meter when it was on sale for 50% off. Then I washed it. Apparently, if you are going to use the muslin, you shouldn't wash it. Oh, well. But, when sewers talk about making a muslin, it is a euphemism for "TEST GARMENT". (But, you can use muslin--now, I'm just getting complicated.)
2. Draw your pattern based on your real size (you may start with a size 14 at the shoulders, then move to a 16 in the waist, and an 18 at the hips). Be honest.

  • I have found that I should start with a 14 and still do a narrow shoulder adjustment, keep the 14 for the bust and also include a full bust adjustment (FBA) of anywhere to 1/2" to 1.5" depending on the type of fabric. I also include a bigger tummy adjustment, and flat derriere adjustment. Being honest requires a glass of wine--not 2 glasses, or your tummy adjustment will need to be bigger.
  • You might also include 1 extra inch at the sides for insurance, but you will feel SOOOO good, when you need to cut these off.
3.  You need a fit buddy, preferably NOT your husband. Unless he is a tailor, he just doesn't get it. 

  • My husband tries really hard, and is very good at measuring things like roof trusses. Bless him, he is very complimentary, but I really don't like hearing him say, you need to more fabric here, and here. It isn't his fault, but it annoys me hearing it from him. Now, if it was my best fit buddy friend, I'd be appreciative. That is just the way it is.

4. Sometimes, you luck out and a muslin works out perfectly. So, if you have choses a cheaper fabric that you like, it is a bonus! Like this one below!  It is Sandra Betzina's Vogue 1385. and the fabric is a woven denim like material that is mostly cotton with a slight stretch, maybe 5%. The only thing I will change is that I won't put interfacing on the next front facing, which goes around the neck and includes the darts to give it that 'tulip' neckline. I think the next fabric I choose will be a little lighter, as this can be a jacket or a blouse. It fits quite well, although I might just add a 3/4 inch Full Bust adjustment. I'm very happy with this muslin, and the fabric was 3 meters for the price of one, and I love the colours. I have enough to make a skirt to go with the plain turquoise fabric for the next blouse.

What do you think? My sewing teacher and friend, Diana inspired the class with her two versions of this blouse. You can see them here.