Thursday, May 30, 2013

Am I *THAT* Daring?

I think I might be :)

For most of us home sewers (not!), it's unlikely that you will always be able to cut out a pattern (Especially the Big 4 patterns) straight from the envelope, and have it be a nicely fitting garment. Now, of course, the idea of "nicely fitted" is highly subjective. For me, I prefer most garments to have near minimal ease. I don't wear a lot of loose fitting, flowy tops - it turns me into a square. I don't wear a lot of loosely fitting bottoms because it turns me into a stump. I look best in clothes that skim my body.

I've had relatively good luck sewing tops in that I've often just needed to adjust for a narrow/small neckline - never knew I had this...but have often had problems with RTW clothes gaping at the neck, and now I know why!

I've learned why I don't like wearing skirts -- my waist to hip to thigh ratio is all skewed. I don't hate my body, but my proportions apparently aren't what they *should* be :) If it fits in the waist and thighs, it's baggy through the hips. If it fits my hips, I am squeezed in at the waist and the thighs are tight. I've had utter confusion from non-sewers when I've said I need a bigger waist size than hips.

Your waist is bigger than your hips!?!? Well, no. But the ratio isn't as small as the 'ideal' body. I think my actual waist is something like 34" and my hips a scant 42" and my hips don't sit where they're *supposed* to, and this make skirt (and pants) fitting silly and fiddly. Hmmph!

I think I'd do well with circle skirts even though I've totally avoided them. I always viewed them as completely retro and figured they were supposed to be long. But you can make a 1/4 or 1/2 or even full circle skirt above the knee! I think that that style does a good job at balancing out my disproportionate hips. I love pencil skirts but really...they aren't best for my body type. And hemlines...I have to (MUST!!) have skirts hit *just* about the knee. I have big, muscular legs and too short just makes me look squat where too far below the knee turns me into a stump - UNLESS it's full length. Whew. So many rules. I can rock full, ankle length dresses but have never tried a skirt. I'm sure it'd be fine.
I was pleasantly surprised by how flattering this full skirt was.
See how my hips are NOT where the hip line for the skirt is? Do you see my very slopey left shoulder??

Super slopey left shoulder...Do you also see how this length of skirt is NOT right for me?

Ok, this skirt is short but the peplum gives me AWESOME waist definition to balance it!

So, now that I've gotten a whole bunch of random, 'I'm so exited' sewing out of the way, I'm ready to focus on my fit issues and get some good, solid, as-professional-as-my-skills-will-allow garments done. For me, this means pants (I have 2 pair of slacks and 2 pair of jeans that are work appropriate), blazers/cardigans (I LOVE BLAZERS and CARDIS! In an unnatural way!) and pretty tops that will help me to feel feminine without making me look too dainty/delicate. I also want dresses and going out tops for dates with Mr. Smith.

The Palmer/Alto book, Fit For Real People, is like mini-gospel in the world of garment making home-sewists. Tons of great information that WORKS from what I've read. So, where does my title of the post factor in? Well, Lauren of Rosie Wednesday, posted HERE about her Body Graph.

It's basically a life-sized tracing of your body, with all it's lovely "differences" on display! This will help you to really visualize your fit issues and know where you need to make adjustments.

I think doing this will help me get Lilly to my actual proportions and make her an essential tool in my quest for good fit!


  1. Our body types are fairly similar. I have the same problem with the waist/hip ratio. I try to wear things that are more tailored, avoiding anything too baggy. I find that fuller skirts or dresses that are fitted at the waist with fuller skirts give me a bit more waist definition.

    I am short in the waist (I usually shorten the waist on patterns about 3/8" to 1/2") but have long legs so I do experience the same thing with skirts not lining up with my hips...another reason why I go with fuller skirts.

    Good to know that I'm not the only one out here with the same fitting issues...

    1. I'm so glad I found you! :) I have been looking for other sewers that have a similar build as me. I really liked your Collette FO's and love the Lisette dress!! I've been waiting for the right fabric to make that one.

  2. Very few people can fit RTW off the rack or sew an outfit straight from the pattern. Thank God for dvds, blogs, you tube, and books to gain fitting skills. I love the maxi dress and the peplum outfit. I think you've accomplished well. You've identified your fitting challenges. I know mine but I tend to sew the same type of outfits--long tunics and tapered pants. I'm working on new looks and getting excited about creating a summer wardrobe. That's the advantage sewists have-to be able to customize what works for them. Don't give up--the goal is worthy.

    1. Thank you! I agree - Thank God! SO many awesome resources are available. I'm going to keep at it for sure.

  3. Hi, Lots of people have a similar shape to you - it's just pattern companies go on a statistical average (and I'm right out in the end of the bell curve myself, lol's so nothing fits). Your peplum looks fantastic and gives that hip curve illusion.

    Do you have a follow button - I can't find one.

    1. Thanks!! I added a follow button too. Can't believe I missed that when setting up/altering my layout.

  4. Well, I think you've made some lovely clothes, beautifully suited to your figure. I LOVE the maxi dress on you, looks really fresh and summery; and the hot pink skirt with the black peplum top is just gorgeous. REALLY love this outfit!

  5. ditto what Carolyn said. And, I want to say that yor style sense is wonderful :-)


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