Fitted Dress Block Tag

My women's fitted block is drafted past the waist, down to the hip level.  It's currently available as a pdf download here.  Although most drafting systems for a women's bodice blocks stop at the waist, it's essential for modern or commercial pattern making to have a bodice block that is fitted to the hip line and ready for both shirt and dress pattern making.  The addition of length past the hip line to the knee level renders this basic fitted block into a dress block.  Drop your centre front and centre back line and side seams straight down to your knee level and square across for the hemline.  Check the hip curve of your dress block, at the hipline, to make sure it has a clean curve after you have added the extra length to the knee level.

Back in the land of blogging and I've made a #FirstSample of the Vivienne Drape Dress.  Many of my pattern puzzles start with my Women's Fitted Dress Block (PDF available) and every student builds a pattern plan for the development of this special design.  All-in-all I think it turned out ok.  I will be moving the dip in the waistline a little closer to the centre front (CF) and taking the cut lines for the drape with it.  Checkout the revised pattern plan below.

How many times have you experienced this; fabric pooling at the back waist in your dresses and shirts?  Well, I have the Pattern Fix for that!  Unfortunately, there is little we can do to save the sample, but we can do the pattern alteration to make sure it doesn't happen again.

This weeks design follows a current trend for large cross-over tucks as seen in a couple of recent #PatternPuzzles.   I know that I am really pushing the envelope with this style.  To get the drape right in the front and make sure the tucks are holding everything in place will be quite a challenge. This is probably a good opportunity to remind everyone that these puzzles are ideas only, with guidelines for making the pattern. The proof is in the testing and that's a creative and technical journey from a well-fitted dress block through pattern making knowledge in the desire of beautiful creations.

The designs used in last Saturdays #PatternPuzzle conversation are the surplus design developments from the Layered Shirt post of a few weeks ago.  They have been lying around on the work table all that time and I didn't have the heart to throw them out.  Then I realised, that was because I really wanted these two tops for myself.  They were just the kind of thing I needed in my wardrobe.  Saved from the shredder, these designs are similar but different enough to entice you to make both.  I will be dealing with them in two separate posts to make sure I cover all the detail. :)

The post is a little late this week as I am totally distracted by work that is going on in the backend of the website, setting up a members area.  We have been working out the best content to make it both attractive and useful to fans and hope to open that members area very soon.  Now back to the #PatternPuzzle that was such fun on Saturday with fans working getting to the answers super-fast.  Then overnight, while I was asleep so many added sketches and photos and in one case an amazing mini-toile.

This week I've showcased #PatternInsights, where I share the light bulb moments in my pattern making career.  In this shirt pattern development, I'm sharing two pattern making moves that early in my career caused me some anxiety.  Anxiety caused by a lack of information and training.  Thank heaven for my hero Natalie Bray!  I am sharing the pattern moves needed to turn my basic fitted (dress) block into a loose-fit block and a basic set of moves to draft a gauntlet placket for a classic shirt sleeve.

The vintage inspiration for this weeks #PatternPuzzle has come from a pattern I found on the So Vintage Patterns website.  Unfortunately, this particular one has been sold but they have a mountain of great vintage patterns for all eras.  I was attracted by the asymmetrically-set,  diagonal seams with gathered drape.  But not so much the button decoration.  By adding the extra seams I believe I have made it easier to construct as they eliminate the corner seams.  I have also reworked the back view from the original design to carry the front diagonal seams through to the back dress.

Once again I am attracted to the loose-fit silhouette that is such a staple in most fashion ranges at the moment.  And somehow I think it may also indicate a desire to bring my own wardrobe up-to-date.  This cocoon shaped, gathered drape shirt would behave at its best if you were to cut it in a light, drapey woven such as silk satin or a crepe de chine.  The gathered drape flows out of the neckline, over the shoulders into a slightly restricted armhole.  This is the one feature of the design that will most likely require tweaking in the first toile.  The shirt design also features a Hi-Lo hemline and a concealed button front with two-piece shirt collar.  This design can be made as either a tunic length or dress length according to personal taste.
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