An FBA in process
Last night was a bust for sewing as Jack and I got home late from a friend’s house for dinner (and, truth be told, I had two glasses of wine…). But the previous night I was able to work on my FBA and here’s the rundown. Using Steph’s FBA tutorial, I slashed and spread my dartless empire bodice of B5523. My aim here is for a lot of shaping as I don’t want a muu muu dress in the end. I want to create room for the bust, but keep the dress close-fitting in all other areas (except the skirt of course), specifically the upper bodice/shoulders and empire waist.
If you will recall I cut a sz 14 initially which ended up still too small in the bust, but huge everywhere else. This time I cut a sz 12 and added a 3 inch FBA (1.5 inches for each side), changing the pattern from a B cup to a D cup. I added darts where there were none so I could retain the close fit after the FBA. An FBA adds some length (from top to bottom) to the pattern, but after basting the bodice together, I think need at least 1/2 an inch more in length to really get the fit I want. If I make this again, I will add that in the next iteration.
Here’s the cut up version of the pattern piece:
And here’s the retraced pattern piece. I wanted to trace it again to get a clean copy.
Since the original pattern piece is dartless, I guesstimated the dart placement. I think I might adjust their placement tonight by putting the waist dart directly under the bust point and moving the side dart 1/2 inch more away from the bust point. I think the dart ends are to0 close to the bust point and therefore really noticeable, especially in a solid color and in a doubleknit fabric.
Luckily, I just basted my darts on this second make of B5523, so it will be quick work to adjust those before constructing the rest of the dress. I hope to finish most of it tonight. Boy, do I wish I had a coverstitch machine already so I could use it on the hems. *sigh*
I should note here that one thing I didn’t realize is that there is no need to true up the side seam or the armhole. For the side seam, once you sew up the dart, the side should revert to its original shape. My friend Claudine said that the resulting distortion of the armhole is needed for the pattern to work when sewn up. And sure enough both happened. I sure do wish sometimes that I had a mind capable of thinking in 3D. Oh well…
One more note, most tutorials don’t have you put in a waist dart if one was not there to begin with, which ends up increasing the width of the pattern thereby requiring you to increase the width of the skirt of the dress. I really didn’t want to increase the width at all because I wanted as close a fitting dress as I could manage. So that’s why I added in the waist dart.
Overall, I am super pleased with how my first real FBA turned out. I think the fit it is spot on. All I really need to do is fine tune the dart placements. What do you think?
Incidentally, since I’ve worn my NL6067 several times now, I have determined that the upper bodice is a little to0 blousy or loose. I probably could have gone down a size in the dress pattern and made an FBA in the bodice and the fit would have been better. Don’t get me wrong, I still love the dress and will still wear it (and proudly). But I am constantly learning so I will always have realizations (epiphanies, if you will) after the fact. Hopefully I will learn from them and do better next time.
In other sewing news, I found out that my friend tried on the first version I made of this dress and not only did it fit her perfectly, but she loved it! A win-win situation. All I have to do is hem it for her and we both get new dresses.
Happy sewing everyone!