Video Transcript

00:00:04:21 – 00:00:20:07

Hi, I’m Maria. And in this video, I’m going to show you how I drafted this dress pattern. This is my Lina Dress pattern, and I’m going to show you how I drafted it, step by step, except with a slight difference. Instead of buttons just to the Empire line, I’m going to draft it with the buttons all the way down the front.

00:00:20:09 – 00:00:22:22

So let’s get started.

00:00:22:22 – 00:00:44:09

Hi, I’m Maria from dresspatternmaking.com, and I draft my own sewing patterns. I also write detail step by step tutorials covering pattern making theory and practice. I have devised my own unique system for drafting the bodice block that includes the upper bust measurement and the pants block that includes the thigh measurement. This means a better outcome for non-standard figures.

00:00:44:11 – 00:00:55:06

From now on, I’ll be writing more instructions for drafting garments, starting with dresses, then moving onto tops, jackets, pants, etc.. So welcome to my channel.

00:00:55:06 – 00:01:10:11

This is a flat drawing of my Lina dress, which shows the design lines. On the right hand side are the pattern pieces I’m going to end up with at the end of this video, there will be 13 pattern pieces. The dress has an empire line, which is a design line above the natural waist, often or usually just below the bust mound.

00:01:10:11 – 00:01:25:16

But I prefer mine just a little lower down. It has an armhole princess line in the bodice front and the bodice back. It has a back yoke and a center back pleat in the bodice piece below the yoke. The neckline is high, but not the same as the block. I’ve opened up the whole neckline two centimeters or three quarters of an inch.

00:01:25:16 – 00:01:40:19

So that is how much is cut off the original block. It has short sleeves with added fullness in both the sleeve head and the bicep. And there is elastic at the bicep. The skirt is an A-line panel skirt with the panel design lines matching up with or meeting the princess lines in the bodice. The skirt has plenty of ease in the hip.

00:01:40:23 – 00:01:57:15

I end up with a hem circumference about 220 centimeters, or about 86 inches. Now, the original dress shown in this image only has buttons to the Empire Line. But in this video I will draft the pattern with buttons in the skirt to sew buttons all the way down the front of the dress. The dress here is a completely different dress.

00:01:57:21 – 00:02:20:05

It has a different skirt, different bodice design lines, and a different sleeve. But the reason I’m showing it to you is because the dress has a similar silhouette, and the fabric is similar. Similar type of fabric and similar weight. So you can get an indication of how buttons down the full length of my Lina dress would look. So the external pattern pieces are indicated on the fashion flat, so are obvious, but the internal pattern pieces are not so obvious.

00:02:20:05 – 00:02:46:05

They don’t appear on that drawing. So I’m showing you the internal pattern pieces with shading. So the dress has a button facing from the shoulders down to the hem. I have drafted this as two pieces bodice facing and skirt facing and they are sewn together at the waist. I could have drafted this as one piece, but I prefer to draft it as two pieces as it’s easier to cut out the smaller pieces that are the same height as the skirt and the bodice pieces than one long piece.

00:02:46:07 – 00:03:02:19

So it makes the cutting layup easier, but it can also make a difference to the order of construction. There is no back facing, I’ve finished off the back neckline with bias strips. The sleeve has a facing to finish the hemming and to create a channel to hold the elastic and the skirt hem is also finished off with bias strips.

00:03:02:21 – 00:03:19:15

So here I’m showing you the join where the back bodice neckline, finished with bias, is sewn to the front neckline finished with a facing – that join. Now I first saw this on a ready to wear garment and it was finished the way I’m showing you here. So I used this finish on my Lina dress. However, it’s a little messy.

00:03:19:15 – 00:03:34:13

I don’t consider a very clean finish. Since then, I have found what I prefer. A way I prefer, a different way, to finish it off. So as shown in the two examples to the right, if I were to make this dress again, I would wrap the back shoulder with the front facing.

00:03:34:13 – 00:03:37:15

So now moving on to showing you how I drafted the pattern.

00:03:37:15 – 00:03:53:05

First outrace my block, making sure my center front line is at right angles to the waistline and transfer the markings I need, such as all the dart legs, the bust point on the bodice front. The dart points in the bodice back and the across chest lines. So this is what I end up with, and this is my starting point for drafting the bodice pattern pieces.

00:03:53:07 – 00:04:04:07

I want to point out that I’m using my sleeveless block and I always use my sleeveless block, even when I’m drafting a garment with sleeves. That’s because the ease that’s been removed will be added back in in the form of a center back pleat.

00:04:04:07 – 00:04:28:12

So now drafting the bodice pattern pieces. I’ll measure up from the waistline, at right angles to the waistline, for six centimeters. That’s about two and 3/8 of an inch and draw a straight line across both blocks. So these lines should be at right angles to the center front and center back lines. So that six centimeters is the placement I like, it’s about two and a half centimeters or one inch below my bust mound.

00:04:28:14 – 00:04:45:13

Now, on the dress, it may look lower than two and a half centimeters or one inch. And if you’re interested in why that is, I covered that in my contouring video. I’ll cut along that line and throw away the bottom section. The skirt will be drafted from this level, from the Empire Line down. So this is what I have now.

00:04:45:19 – 00:05:01:03

I’m going to make my waist darts larger because the measurement is larger than I want it to be here. I know that I want the Empire Line Measurement to be 85 centimeters that is 33 and 7/16 of an inch. So I make the necessary adjustments to the darts so that I end up with that amount that I want.

00:05:01:05 – 00:05:21:15

Remembering that this is the half pattern. So the information that will end up to be half of the amount shown here. I’ll write down these measurements for when I draft the skirt. Make a note of them. So from now on, only the amended waist dart will be shown. I’m going to open up the neckline for two centimeters. That’s three quarters of an inch all around from the shoulder line down the center front line.

00:05:21:20 – 00:05:36:09

Just doing the bodice front at the moment. I’ll cut that two centimeter strip off. But actually, before I do cut it, I really should check my contouring. Now the gape dart is so tiny, I’m not going to worry about it, So I’m going to cut that bit off. If you don’t know what I’m talking about with the gape dart and the contouring,

00:05:36:14 – 00:05:56:19

you need to watch my contouring video. I’m going to cut a little bit off the shoulder edge also, so I’m going to measure from the new neck point and measure for 9.25 centimeters, that’s 3 and 5/8 of an inch and make a mark. And then from there I’ll drawa bew armhole and cut that bit off and discard it. Now I’ll do the same to the back neckline, shoulder and armhole.

00:05:56:21 – 00:06:10:21

Now, I want to point out that it is probably more common when drafting a pattern to work on just the front first, finish the front pieces, then do the back. But for the purposes of this video, it is easier for me to move back and forth between the front and the back. So that’s what I will be doing.

00:06:10:23 – 00:06:33:12

So the back neckline, I will measure around for two centimeters or three quarters of an inch and cut that section off and I’m going to stay with the back here to do the shoulder and the armhole. I want to close the back shoulder dart and in the process create the back yoke piece. I’m going to draw a line from the middle of the shoulder dart and continue it down to the across back line and use this as my new dart.

00:06:33:14 – 00:06:51:14

I’m extending the dart down to this line because that is where I want my yoke line to be. Now, if you’ve done some dart manipulation, you may think this is not right. You just can’t extend past the dart point and increase the length of the dart. But I’ll show you in a bit what difference it makes and why, I think for me, it’s no big deal to increase the length of the dart.

00:06:51:19 – 00:07:13:09

So this shaded bit shows you the extra bit I’m going to be taking out of the bodice when I extend the shoulder dart. And this is a 2D representation of what the actual effect or outcome will be. I’m making it smaller across the back there, So you might think that it will be too small, but because the sleeve I’m using has added fullness and plenty of it, this will really make no difference.

00:07:13:11 – 00:07:29:12

If it was a fitted sleeve, it may be a problem. For me, it would be a problem, but I never draft fitted sleeves. So this is my new dart and I’m going to cut down that dart leg as shown and along the across back line, leaving a little hinge so that I can close that and secure it down with tape.

00:07:29:14 – 00:07:53:05

I’ll also chop off the little bit of the dart that sticking out from underneath when I’ve closed the dart. Now I’m going to bring in the front block. Now, if the front block shape isn’t cut out from paper, you can just fold the paper along the shoulder line to do this. So using the front shoulder line as the guide for the length of the shoulder for the back, and using it to check and create a smooth flow through line from the front to the back of the armhole.

00:07:53:07 – 00:08:13:01

I’m going to draw that line. The shoulder lengths now match and there is a smooth flow through line. I will cut off that extra bit and throw it away. So now I can cut along the across back line to separate the back into two pieces. I have my yoke and I will add a notch on both pieces to help when sewing.

00:08:13:03 – 00:08:33:03

Now, moving back to the front bodice, I will draw a curved line from the armhole through the bust point and down through the dart leg to the Empire Line. I’ll cut along that line and separate that into two pieces. I’ll cut off the dart value from the side piece and throw it away. I’m going to do something which you’re not supposed to do, but I’m going to do it.

00:08:33:05 – 00:08:54:13

I’m supposed to leave a hinge, but I’m not going to do that. I cut along both the dart leg lines and throw away the dart value and stick together the two pieces. I will then smooth out the sharp dart point and throw that away. Now I need to measure the adjoining seam lines, so the bodice front seam line is in blue and the bodice side seam line is in orange.

00:08:54:13 – 00:09:12:20

I need to measure them because they need to match. Now the side piece needs to be matched with a center front line because that one didn’t change. That’s the correct one. I need to open up the side pattern piece at the bust point and add three quarters of a centimeter or 5/16 of an inch. Now I’ll add some notches to help

00:09:12:20 – 00:09:40:10

sew these seams together. First I’ll add three notches to the center front piece, the first notch at the bust point, the second two and a half centimeters or one inch below the first notch and the third notch, two and a half centimeters or one inch above the first notch. Then I’ll take the side piece and match it up at the armhole and start walking it down, putting notches on the side piece in the process of walking it down, finishing at the Empire Line, making sure that the lengths match as well as transferring those notches.

00:09:40:12 – 00:09:58:16

So the side piece is actually finished. It just needs seam allowance added later on. Now I’m going to add a button placket to the center front bodice. I’ll measure out one and a half centimeters, that’s a 5/8 of an inch, from the center front line. I’ll measure out at the top and the bottom, make marks and draw a vertical line to join those points.

00:09:58:18 – 00:10:15:07

So that’s my button placket. Usually you’re supposed to mark the buttonholes and the buttons on the packet. I actually never mark it on the pattern, to transfer it onto the fabric. I always just mark these directly on the fabric. But this is where you would normally mark the buttonholes and buttons. So that’s the front piece. It’s finished except for seam allowance.

00:10:15:13 – 00:10:30:21

Now the lower back pattern pieces, below the yoke. I’ll draw a curved line from the across chest line through the dart point and down the dart leg to the Empire Line. I’ll cut along that line to separate those pieces. But before I do that, I’ll add a couple of notches on both pattern pieces to help align them when sewing.

00:10:31:02 – 00:10:47:00

Then I’ll cut along that line to separate the pieces and then cut off the dart value and throw that bit away. The last thing to do for the center back piece is to add the pleat, I’ll measure out two centimeters, that’s three quarters of an inch, from the top and the bottom, then draw a vertical line to join those points.

00:10:47:02 – 00:11:04:15

On the original center back line, I’m going to measure down from the top and up from the Empire Line for six centimetersm that’s two and 3/8 of an inch, and mark that they are pleats. So on the fabric, I will be sewing those pleats down for six centimeters or two 3/8 of an inch down from the top and up from the bottom for that amount.

00:11:04:17 – 00:11:22:01

Now, although I draft half patterns to begin with, for the final patterns that I place on the fabric, I always create full pieces as I never cut on the fold. So these back pieces are now full pieces. Now, in real life, I don’t draft patterns by hand anymore. I would draft these on the computer and print out the half patterns.

00:11:22:03 – 00:11:48:20

Then I trace the pattern pieces on to Vilene or Trace & Toile and trace the half pattern, flip the half pattern over and trace the other half on to the Vilene / Trace & Toile. I’ve added one centimeter seam allowance to the back pieces, drawing the grain line in the middle, I’ll write in the pattern name, which is my Gael bodice and the pattern piece, so: Yoke Bacj Bodice, etc. I will add one centimeter seam allowance to the back side pieces, drawing the grainline in the middle.

00:11:49:00 – 00:12:12:02

So I measuring at the Empire Line waist and at the half point drawing the grain line at right angles to the waist line, adding one centimeter seam allowance to the center front piece because I add one centimeter seam allowance to all the pattern pieces and I’ll put the grain line on the center front line. For the side front pieces, adding the one centimeter seam allowance again and putting the grain line in the middle as per the side back pieces.

00:12:12:07 – 00:12:31:01

So when I’m adding the seam allowance, it should be squared down from the waist line. So not following the side seam line below the waist line, it should be squared down from the waist line. Here are some close ups to show you what I mean. It makes it easier when sewing it to the skirt. Now there is another pattern piece, but it can be created from the center front piece.

00:12:31:04 – 00:12:48:20

This is the facing. I will measure out for six centimeters or two and 3/8 of an inch. I measure along the shoulder line, down the neckline and down the center front and trace or cut that out, maybe trace the whole center front and then cut that piece out from it to create the facing piece. Now, giving that the center front already has seam allowance on that,

00:12:48:20 – 00:13:06:16

this will have the seam allowance included. And I create both pieces for everything. I don’t create one piece and then use it twice and I don’t cut on the fold. Now the facing needs to be interfaced. Truth be told, I don’t write that on any of the pattern pieces. I know that. But if you need reminding, you would need to write down on your pattern pieces.

00:13:06:17 – 00:13:25:22

What I absolutely do do is write pattern piece numbers on the pattern pieces in large font, especially for layout. I always run through the numbers to make sure I’m not missing anything, that no pattern pieces have fallen on the floor. That’s happened before and I had no fabric left over for one pattern piece. So the bodice pattern pieces are finished.

00:13:25:22 – 00:13:46:17

So my Lina Dress is actually made up of three elements: a bodice, a skirt and a sleeve. It’s actually made up of my Gael bodice, my Magnolia skirt and my Celestina sleeve. This is the system I use, and it works for me because I use the different elements again in different dresses. For example, the skirt in this dress is the same as the skirt in my Lina Dress,

00:13:46:17 – 00:13:55:21

the Magnolia skirt I’ll be drafting next. This denim dress, though, has a different bodice and a different sleeve. Again, this is my system and it works for me.

00:13:56:04 – 00:14:16:08

The Magnolia skirt is a panel skirt that falls from the Empire Line. And these are the final five pattern pieces. I’m going to end up with. The measurements that I’m going to need to draft this skirt are: the Empire Line measurement of the bodice block for each of the pattern pieces. So the side front, the center back, the side back. The center back measurement, of course, exclude the pleat value because the pleat will be closed.

00:14:16:12 – 00:14:37:16

The other measurements I need are the body hip circumference and two vertical measurements, which are the Empire Line to hip and the skirt length from the Empire Line Waist down. Now I’m going to draw a very long line for the Empire waistline because I’m going to be showing you all the skirts side by side. Now, if I was drafting this by hand, I would do each skirt individually because I wouldn’t have paper big enough to do this all at once.

00:14:37:21 – 00:14:53:17

And even if I did, I wouldn’t have the table or bench space to work with a piece of paper that big. So for the purposes of this video, I’ll be showing all the skirt pieces together on the screen at once. And therefore the Empire Line waistline I have drawn is very long. Before marking the Empire Line waist measurements,

00:14:53:17 – 00:15:16:04

I’ll first draw some guidelines for the vertical measurements. I will measure down from the Empire Line waist with 28 centimeters, that’s 11 inches, for my empire line to hip. Now, how I got my empire line to hip measurement is taking my waist to hip and adding the six centimeters or two and 3/8 of an inch that I cut off from my bodice when drafting the Gaek bodice. A that depth, I’ll draw a line parallel to the waist.

00:15:16:05 – 00:15:38:00

Then I’ll measure down from the empire waist for the skirt length. So my skirt length is 63 centimeters or 24 and 13/16 of an inch. I’ll draw another parallel line and mark it my skirt length. Now I’ll mark the empire waist measurements on that guideline. So for example, A to B is the measurement for the side front pattern piece, 12.75 centimeters.

00:15:38:00 – 00:16:04:06

That’s five inches. I’ll mark that measurement on the empire waistline. So that is point A to B, Then I’ll draw vertical lines down from A and B, they must be at right angles to that empire waistline, I’ll draw those lines down to the hem. These are just guidelines. But basically I have drawn three sides of a rectangle. Then I’ll repeat that with the measurements for the center front, the center back and the side back. In the middle of the side front, I’m going to draw the grainline.

00:16:04:11 – 00:16:26:11

Usually you draw the grainline at the end, when finishing off the pattern pieces, but given that I want a line in the middle here to help me draft the pattern, particularly the curve of the hem, then I’m going to draw the grainline. Now might as well kill two birds with one stone. Now, unlike the other three pattern pieces, the center front grain line isn’t in the middle of the pattern piece, and I don’t need a line in the middle of this pattern piece.

00:16:26:11 – 00:16:44:07

But since I’m marking the grainline on the others, I’ll mark it here as well. I will mark the grainline in the middle of the center back and the side that pattern pieces. There is actually one more guideline measurement I forgot to draw earlier, and that is a line four centimeters or one and 9/16 of an inch down from the empire waistline.

00:16:44:08 – 00:17:03:02

So I’ll measure down from the empire waistline for that amount and draw a line parallel to the waistline. This is because each panel has a four centimeter square at the top. So the side seam angle doesn’t start directly from the Empire Line. It start four centimeters down shown by the pink shaded rectangle. Now, I need to do my first calculation.

00:17:03:02 – 00:17:31:14

This calculation is to determine the side seam angle or the flare that is added to each panel. I will take my hip measurement and multiply it by 130%. This is because that’s the amount of these I want – 30% of the hip measurement. So my hip times 130% is 140 centimeters or 55 and 1/8 of an inch. Currently, the hip measurement is the same as the Empire Line waist, so 85 centimeters, the waist and the hip are exactly the same at the moment.

00:17:31:20 – 00:17:51:05

So I need an additional 55 centimeters or 21 and 5/8 of an inch at the hip line, in total across all of the panels. So 55 centimeters or 21 and 5/8 of an inch divided by 12 is four and a half centimeters or 1 and 3/4 of an inch. Why divided by 12? There are 12 places where flare is added to this six panel skirt.

00:17:51:08 – 00:18:06:16

So I need to add four and a half centimeters or one and three quarter inches to each of those 12 places. I will measure out from the side front at the hip for that amount. Then draw a line from the line four centimeters below the waist line to touch the green arrow, where I’ve marked how much I want to add to the hip.

00:18:06:18 – 00:18:27:05

Then I’ll draw the side seam line, remembering that the first four centimeters are squared down. So if I’m drawing the line from the four centimeter mark, I of course have to take that into account. So to make the necessary adjustment to the length measurement. Then I repeat that on the other side of the panel, the same four and a half centimeters or one and three quarter of an inch is added and the side seam is drawn.

00:18:27:08 – 00:18:44:17

So now I’m showing you the outline of the side front skirt pattern piece, with a hem curve drawn to touch the bottom of the grainline arrow. After I finish drafting all the pattern pieces, I will finesse the hem curve, but at the moment I will just draw what I consider a reasonable curve. This is my side front pattern piece.

00:18:44:19 – 00:19:01:11

I do need to add notches. I will add notches at the four centimeter line and the hip line for all pattern pieces. Now when I do the truing, the 1 notch at the hip will change for some pattern pieces. But at the moment when I do these four pattern pieces, I’ll put just 1 notch at the hip line.

00:19:01:17 – 00:19:25:13

So moving on to the center front pattern piece, I will measure out from the center front hip line for four and a half centimeters or one and three quarters of an inch and place a mark and repeating the process of drawing in the side seam line to touch that mark. Of course, using the side seam length measurement. But given that I’m starting to draw the side same from four centimeters below the Empire Line, then it will be the side seam length, minus four centimeters.

00:19:25:15 – 00:19:41:15

The center front piece also needs an extension for the buttons. So now I’ll add that button placard. I will measure out from the center front line for one and a half centimeters or 5/8 of an inch, doing that at both the top and the bottom of the center front line, then drawing a vertical line to join those two marks.

00:19:41:17 – 00:20:07:17

Now, this is the shape of the center front pattern piece. I’ll add the same notches, 1 at the four centimeter depth mark and 1 at the hip, then repeating the whole process for the center back pattern piece and repeating it all again for the side back pattern piece. So now I’m going to true these pattern pieces. I’ll check that the side seam lengths match, check the hem curve and also make changes to the notches.

00:20:07:19 – 00:20:28:02

I’m going to move the side front piece so that the side seam lines up with the center front side seam. Now if I was drafting this on paper, since I still haven’t added the seam allowance, I don’t want to cut out the shape yet, in which case I could fold along this side seam line and I would fold it as shown. The top four centimeters is not an issue,

00:20:28:02 – 00:20:47:04

I’m not checking that part, I’m just checking them from the four centimeter notch downwards. So match them up at the side seams, checking that the side seam lengths match and fixing the hem curve, getting a better flow through. Same with the side back and center back – I’ll match them up from the top notch, checking the length and checking the hem curve flow through.

00:20:47:10 – 00:21:11:12

I’ll stick those together temporarily with Scotch tape and move the side back to match up with the side front. Again, checking the flow through as a whole and while I’m at it, I’ll finalize notches. I’ll leave just 1 notch between the center front and the side front at the hip. I’ll add a notch to both sides of the side front and side back hip, and I’ll end up with 3 notches between the side back and the center back.

00:21:11:12 – 00:21:33:14

So this is the final look of the curve and the final notches. So a few things left to do. I’m going to add seam allowance – 1 centimeter on all seams. That’s what I prefer and I still need the skirt facing for the button placket. I’ll line up the bodice facing with the skirt to get the width of the facing and I’ll trace of that section from the skirt.

00:21:33:16 – 00:21:52:19

So that is all that’s required for the facing pattern piece. It’s already got a seam allowance included. So my final pieces will be labeled and I’ll write cutting instructions. However, what I’m showing you on screen are the pattern pieces that I print out. But these are not the pattern pieces that I lay out on my fabric, and that’s because it says they’re cut 2

00:21:52:19 – 00:22:13:11

and I never cut on fold. And I never use one pattern piece to cut twice. I always create all pattern pieces to lay out on the fabric. So this is what I actually would have. These are for my final pattern pieces that I put on my fabric. And the TSU means ‘This Side Up’. Now, I actually haven’t marked my buttons on my skirt.

00:22:13:13 – 00:22:33:11

I never actually mark buttons on the pattern. I always mark them directly onto the fabric – buttons and button holes. And that’s because I’m never sure of what buttons I’m going to use, therefore how many buttons I have. For example, I might have only 16 of a certain button, I might have 17, I might have 18, and I’m not sure which buttons I’m going to use and how many I have.

00:22:33:13 – 00:22:47:11

So usually I even choose the buttons afterwards and mark the layout directly on the fabric. So these are my Magnolia skirt final pattern pieces as I would print them out and these are my pattern pieces that I lay out on my fabric.

00:22:47:11 – 00:23:05:15

So now, drafting my Celestina sleeve. I will start with my fitted sleeve block that has two inches ease in the bicep. Now I am adding a sleeve to this garment, even though I drafted the bodice pattern pieces with my sleeveless block. But this is not a problem because there is enough ease in the bodice for adding a sleeve,

00:23:05:16 – 00:23:30:02

since I added a pleat in the center back. And there is plenty of ease, or there will be plenty of ease, in the sleeve pattern to allow for arm movement , with the higher smaller armhole of the sleeveless bodice block. The end result is.. it makes no difference. So first I’ll trace around my block from 5 centimeters or 2 inches below the bicep line, around the sleeve head, and down the other side, transferring the shoulder mark and front and back notches as well.

00:23:30:04 – 00:23:47:22

So using a ruler, I will then draw a line across the bicep so that I have a horizontal line that I can then use to square up a line to meet the shoulder point. I will also draw another line connecting the open ends of the bicep. I will then cut along the vertical line so that it separates into two pieces.

00:23:47:23 – 00:24:07:23

I’m going to add fullness and that fullness will be added evenly throughout the piece from top to bottom. I will draw a horizontal line on some other paper and then place those two pieces on that new paper, matching the bicep line with the line that I’ve just drawn. I’ll stick those pieces down securely with Scotch tape. Now I am adding seven centimeters or two and a half inches ease.

00:24:07:23 – 00:24:27:10

So I will measure that out the top in the bottom and draw a line in the middle, smack bang in the middle of that section I’ve just opened up. So the top of that line that I’m drawing is the new shoulder point. And that actual line will end up being the grainline. So this is what I have now and I want to redraw the sleeve head curve. In separating the pieces,

00:24:27:10 – 00:24:49:21

the sleeve head has become a little squarer, so I’ll shave off some of the top of the front and back to restore it to something closer to the original curve. So this is showing you what I want to remove. Using a French Curve ruler. I’ll remove a bit from the top of the back ending up at the shoulder mark and doing the same on the front side, cutting a little off the top of the front sleeve head.

00:24:49:23 – 00:25:08:04

So this is what my final curve looks like. I will notch the top, that’s the shoulder point., I will also notch where the fullness was added. Then I’ll measure up from the base of the bicep for two centimeters or three quarters of an inch and draw a curved line from the underarm point to that point. But I’ll keep the last little bit at the underarm squared off,

00:25:08:04 – 00:25:31:13

so when I join the seams there, I don’t have a little pointy bit. Then I’ll add my one centimeter seam allowance. I will now create the facing piece using this completed sleeve, keeping in mind that the seam allowance is already included. So I will measure up 5 centimeters or 2 inches from the base. So this means that the final facing will be three centimeters because there’s one centimeter seam allowance.

00:25:31:15 – 00:25:49:23

And then at the top I will turn back the facing down for a clean finish. So the final width of the facing will be 3 centimeters. I’ll put 2 notches at the back. And this will help make sure that I am attaching the facing the correct way because the sleeve is not symmetrical. While I have them both together,

00:25:50:00 – 00:26:08:09

I’ll put in the grainline on the facing piece as well as the sleeve. I must mention that in the Lina Dress the arrow would be only in one direction because the fabric has a nap. But I use the sleeve pattern in other dresses and I just remember to keep all the pattern pieces in one direction if I’m using it on fabric with a nap.

00:26:08:15 – 00:26:32:14

There are a lot of rules that are essential in a factory setting, in a garment manufacturing situation where the people in the factory aren’t going to guess what you want. You’ve got to tell them exactly what you want. When you’re drafting your own patterns, I think a lot of these things can slide, and certainly for me they do, because, for example, I know I always know that if there’s an nap then I’ve got to place them all in one direction. And finally I’ll label the pattern with a pattern name.

00:26:32:14 – 00:26:50:00

And here I have written on these pieces cut 2, but I only label that for printing it out because I would create all the pieces for cutting. I always cut on one layer, never on the fold. So these are actually my final pattern pieces that I lay on the fabric.

00:26:50:10 – 00:27:09:19

So when I finished drafting the pattern and I have all my pattern pieces, I do a fabric layout plan to see how much fabric I need, if I plan to buy the fabric or if I already have the fabric to see if I have enough or too much, etc. I never cut on fold. I always with one layer, I always create full pattern pieces and all the pieces.

00:27:09:19 – 00:27:30:15

So if there’s two bodice side pieces, I create two bodice side pieces, I don’t create one and use it twice. I also first lay it out in sections and before doing the actual pinning and cutting, I will cut the fabric into those sections. So in the end I will only have one of those sections on my cutting table when I’m pinning and cutting out the fabric. That is just so much easier.

00:27:30:15 – 00:27:48:22

I never pin pattern pieces on to 3 meters or 3 yards of fabric at the one time. Never, never, never do that. I have plenty of fabric here and I will have a lot of bias strips that I can make with the leftover section in the bottom right hand side. I will have a lot of bias, but I can use that over time on other things.

00:27:49:00 – 00:28:06:09

Now, very important here. This fabric has a nap on it. It has a direction. So all the pieces have to be placed in the same direction. If the fabric didn’t have a map, I could probably get away with 2.1 meters. Is that right? Yes, Or just over two yards. But but it does have a map and that always takes up more fabric.

00:28:06:09 – 00:28:25:15

Now. This is how I constructed this dress. I had to think this through when drafting the pattern because I prefer to sew the sleeve in the flat rather than the round. Now, there are other ways or different orders that this can be done in. But this is the way that I prefer. I’m also serging or overlocking seams as I go along, but I’m not going into that level of detail here.

00:28:25:16 – 00:28:54:00

I’m just doing the order. So firstly, the center back pleat then the bodice princess lines front and back, then the back yoke attached to the lower part of the back bodice. I then put the bias on the back neckline, I assemble the front and back skirts, sewing together the inner panels, not the side seams yet. Next, the waist seams joining the front skirt to the front bodice and the back skirt to the back bodice. Then attaching the bodice placket and the skirt placket at the waist seam. The button

00:28:54:04 – 00:29:15:03

needs interfacing on it either before or after the waist seam is joined, but definitely before attaching it to the dress. So then sewing the placket onto the dress from the shoulders down the neckline, and then down the front of the dress. Then under-stitching before turning the facing back under. The shoulder seams. Then I prep the sleeve with two lines of gathering stitches

00:29:15:03 – 00:29:39:00

and sew the sleeves on in the flat, then sew down the side seams. Then sew the facing onto the sleeve and put the elastic in, Then hemming the skirt. I stitch the facing down with a line of top stitching and I do that at one centimeter or 5/8 of an inch around the neckline, but then at three centimeters, which is I think 1 and 1/8 or one and a quarter inches down the center front.

00:29:39:00 – 00:29:51:18

And that’s because I want the buttons to be in between the edge of the placket and the line of stitching. So I want the buttons to be in between those two. So then the buttonholes and the buttons to finish the dress off.

00:29:51:18 – 00:30:14:19

For those of you who watched my first pattern video The Waratah Dress, if I want to do a quick comparison of the two dresses, the Waratah and the Lina. They have a similar silhouette, but each of the elements, the bodice skirt and sleeve, are different. As far as the bodice goes, it’s a bit obvious – the crossover bodice of the Waratah and the high neckline with the buttons on the Lina dress are obviously different – but the underlying shape and fit are the same.

00:30:14:21 – 00:30:35:00

They have the same armhole princess line with the exact same amount of ease and the same measurement at the Empire Line. Now the sleeves are the exact same basic pattern, but the Lina has an extra pattern piece, the sleeve facing, to hold the elastic and bring the sleeve back to the arm. So gathering it at the bicep does give it a slightly different look.

00:30:35:02 – 00:31:00:15

Now, the skirts, even though both have the same amount of ease in the hip and basically the same hem circumference, they do look quite different. And there are two main differences. One is that the panel skirts do, by their very nature add vertical design lines within the skirt. And with those lines meeting the princess lines in the bodice, it can give the dress a more slimming effect, but probably more so with plain non print fabric, where those lines are more obvious.

00:31:00:17 – 00:31:16:15

But the real difference, those vertical design lines in the skirt make is the drape of the skirt, and that is because of the grainline. The grainline is forcing the fabric to hang in a particular way. You can see on the right hand side in the Lina dress how it drapes in the middle where the design lines are.

00:31:16:19 – 00:31:36:00

So the hem of the Lina dress seems narrower or smaller, even though the hem measurement is similar in the two dresses. Now here the difference is accentuated because this Waratah dress in this slide is made of linen. Whereas the Lina dress is made of a drapier viscose. But here they are, both viscose, rayon, and you can still see the difference in the drape of the skirt.

00:31:36:00 – 00:31:52:04

So I’m going to talk about the grain line for a bit. Not so much about the grain line on the patent piece and how you lay it out on the fabric, but more so the drape of the garment, how the grainline affects the drape of the garment, because as I showed you earlier, the basic A-line skirt drapes differently to the panel skirt.

00:31:52:06 – 00:32:12:10

And this is because of where the straight grain ends up in the final skirt and how it acts in the final garment together with the adjoining fabric pieces and their grain lines. So the drape is an outcome of the grainline doing what it does, which is doing its best to be boss and taking charge. If it’s cut correctly, it wants to hang straight.

00:32:12:12 – 00:32:26:22

So on the left is the back pattern piece of the basic A-line skirt, my Gardenia skirt used in my Waratah Dress on the right are the three pieces of the Magnolia, A-line panel skirt that make up the full back skirt from side to side seam.

00:32:26:22 – 00:32:41:01

The grainline is drawn down the middle of each of these pattern pieces. With the gardenia skirt, the grain line is drawn on the center back line, and with the Magnolia skirt, it’s drawn down the middle of each of the three pieces squared down from a straight waistline.

00:32:41:01 – 00:33:00:10

Now, when you think about the grainline, many people will think about this as one line in the middle of the pattern. And that’s the way that I used to think about it. That’s fine as far as cutting out the fabric goes, you don’t want a wonky grain line in your skirt. You want to align the pattern grain line with a lengthwise grain in the fabric so that the drape is balanced.

00:33:00:12 – 00:33:20:14

But if you want to be able to imagine how a dress will drape before even sewing it up, it is helpful to imagine the lengthwise thread throughout the whole pattern piece or the fabric piece, not just kind of in one spot in the fabric. So here is the lengthwise thread throughout the Gardenia skirt and throughout the Magnolia skirt.

00:33:20:16 – 00:33:41:04

So compare how the edges of the 2 skirts, the fabric at the side seam, and the grainlines – compare how they are different, And you might be able to, if not immediately over time, see how that’s going to affect the drape. So in the gardenia skirt, the unshaded bits of the boss threads, they want to hang straight because they are hanging the whole length of the skirt.

00:33:41:06 – 00:34:02:17

They are from the waist, they’re supported from the waist and they will generally win. But the weight of the side sections, which are not supported from the waist will push or collapse down and their weight will push the lengthwise grain inwards towards the hem. And there will be some fluting happening where the straight grain and the collapsing fabric is having a disagreement or a push and pull.

00:34:02:17 – 00:34:22:21

There will be that fluting. Now compare that to the Magnolia skirt. The side pieces have some straight grain hanging the whole length of the skirt. So different parts of the magnolia skirt will be collapsing, being unsupported, and the fluting will be different. I’m hoping that this 2D representations will give you some indication of what I’m talking about.

00:34:22:23 – 00:34:41:13

Now, both of these skirts have the same amount of ease in the hip and very similar hem circumference, but actually another difference that magnolia skirt will end up with more ease between the waist and the hip. And maybe contrary to what you might expect, more ease, there can be more flattering as well as more comfortable compared to the basic A-line skirt.

00:34:41:18 – 00:34:56:19

So again, it’s helpful to imagine the grain throughout the patent piece or the fabric piece and try to visualize the sections that are unsupported and will want to collapse or fold in and the effect of the final hang and look of the skirt.

00:34:56:19 – 00:35:18:23

This is the next pattern video that I’ll be doing my Jasah Dress. It has a skirt with pleats in the Empire Line and it is much less A-line, much squarer than the first two dresses. It’s got to sleeve with a flounce and a V-neck. In this version it has buttons only to the Empire Line, but these two versions have buttons all the way down the front to different lengths.

00:35:19:01 – 00:35:26:22

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