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Altering Fashion Pattern: Princess Bust

Lesson 15 from: Tailored to Fit: The Palmer/Pletsch Tissue Fitting Method

Pati Palmer, Marta Alto

Altering Fashion Pattern: Princess Bust

Lesson 15 from: Tailored to Fit: The Palmer/Pletsch Tissue Fitting Method

Pati Palmer, Marta Alto

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Lesson Info

15. Altering Fashion Pattern: Princess Bust

Lesson Info

Altering Fashion Pattern: Princess Bust

So for nancy, we're going to use a princess style pattern and there are princess that comes from the shoulder straight down over the best and there are princess that come from the arm hole over the best line if you are really full bested the shoulder princess style is a little bit easier to fit so that's what we're going to show the pattern we're going to use is this particular mccall's pattern six seven six, which has both princes and shoulder princes in our home princess in it and I've made it up in a stretch cotton the back is also a princess line from the shoulder and this is the shoulder princess and the stretch cotton is nice because you can get a little more snugly if you want to and get a little bit more fitted blouse and still be able to move your arms when you're driving etcetera so this is what we're going to be doing on nancy so nancy a little bit more way start with the back I think they're getting that right our students start with the fact we give you a quiz and on answe...

r and nancy has a broad back remember so we look and sure enough, the center back isn't coming to our centre back, so when you do a broad back adjustment on dh, she also had a high round and you can see the neckline is almost five eighths of an inch low, so we need to raise that by based on this pattern. So I'm going to do those two things first, and then we'll come back to the front. The shoulder princes is nice too, because you can actually shape it in deeper or let it out of here. We need to sort of mould it to your shape and it can be that out here so you could get a little more room across the front if you need it, not just adding two decides it's very subtle and your fabric it's fabulous. By the way, this pattern has a broad back alteration line going through the shoulder down to the him and because it's hard to get a line going all the way and bypass the seam, this line is actually bent, so it comes up to a point and then it angles over to the shoulder and that's. Ok, so if you have a pattern for shoulder princess that doesn't have a line drawn, finding a place we can go straight through is kind of hard. So that's, why it's okay to bend the line this cuts all the way through this out of the way I am the amount to add you have there is a personal preference about it too as well the fabric preference because my stretch cotton you know, I can go like this and I could have minimal these across the back, but if you're using something firm and, well, the heavier and you knew you were going to need to, you know, driver do something where you needed more reaching room just at another quarter inch or so to whatever would be the amount you actually need. And that gives you a little more ease across the back and it it's personal. You may have to make it again and see if you want to change it, make it once tried on see how it is. How much is nancy? I'm adding five eight so easy when its just two straight edges then you have one piece that goes top to bottom. But when it curves, you have to have a couple pieces. You do remember what we said about where the broad back is due. This a nancy again it's here at the crease of the arm and that's where you test the broad back and usually the tape that's taping the arm hole will sort of fall into the crease. And so and you can do this on herself with the rear view mirror where you could have somebody and this is where the husband could probably handle this you just say, okay, I got it here how far from my centre back or take a picture one of those things but that's what you're looking at just this area and that's also where the fullest part of the shoulder blades are this is not brought back up here a lot of people think sleep arm hold arm hole sleep to sleeve but this's shoulders this is broader narrow shoulders just a reminder you can have narrow shoulders and a broad back most kind something like coat is made with a lot more ease across the back, the sleeves, the shoulders the front because unless they show it in the catalog over a sleeveless dress or something very non bulky they have added extra e's in general that's the case I don't not so sure I can always say with the are doing because I'm not there reading their minds, but generally that has been the case they showed us a winter coat in a heavy wool it's bigger so don't make it smaller because you need that camera overlap the side, pat the side back and the centre back pieces pin them together for the high round and I'm going to do the high round up higher than it's marked on the pattern again future designs we do from the calls we may consider just not having that alteration line on the pattern and have you draw it and will tell you that the guide sheet because with the multi size patterns we can ever get it where we want it exactly um however if you have a scene at the center back and it curves a little bit center back the seam of curves that really is okay but if you have if it's on the fold if you cut at the seam line at the center back of straight over and it won't go into the arm hole it will go into the shoulder usually um and then it works this is no distortion yeah, this is a hold so there's no distortion from the seam down I debated about really struggled with that on this pattern because I thought well we're telling everybody we have altercation lines printed on palmer pledge patterns but you have to draw this one and it was really a dilemmas I'm easing myself into which way to go so I put the tissue on the side back in the tissue under the center back piece sure it's going on the way there any time you have a two piece back you need to do it this way whether you're taking a tuck for sway backs way flat back for doing higher lower round martin and I really first foundry selection for shirts you know you can use cotton gin use sham bray type you could make a shirt out of denim if you want something that drapes well that sort of skims over the fluff fabrics like rayanne shally or ran the teak do that very well jeanette's was a round the teak and it really skinned over everything very flattering has enough weight to hang well on the fabric that you have is a ray on and its texture just has a lot of weight to it. You said it was a designer piece that you've found and it's just beautiful and it's a drape I just can't wait to see it on you because the drape should just be just so flattering just got a lot of nice weight to it I like fabrics with weight because they just hang well there's cotton don't cling a little bit more, but that stretch cotton that I was showing you is a little bit of a sheen to it and it doesn't clean quite a smith so it I like that when they're like stretching it to silks are very nice too last like this I'm not sure which interfacing to suggest I'm thinking maybe perfect these light because it's the texture I figured I would have to test yeah, the light isn't quite a christmas share, but it it hears well too textured surfaces and they're about the same way too actually now that we've added to the back shoulder seam won't match and technically the children front shoulder and the back shoulder seams should match, but the beauty of the princess seam is that we have a scene so we can take this seam a little deeper and then the same should still match so this's just a little deeper princess seam in the back at the top becomes the dart way would have done if it was a one piece back okay just back on that's much better okay last looks at the front and raise your arm under my arm okay first thing we look for in a princess seam is where is the bus level when we did the darted fronts we were with the dark lowers when you do the alteration member how it lowered quite a bit on one one of you but in princess we have to have the bump of the pattern where your bump is so in this particular pattern this is the apex level and it's exactly perfect for nancy so we don't have to change that part of it so then we un pin and sometimes have to un pin all the way to the bottom we need to bring the center front of the pattern to your center front and then we could just put a pin what this gonna let it be there we go now what we have to determine is how much we need to add here so raise your hand a little bit there we go it's like it was pulling him it we want stitching line to stitching line, which is about two inches and we want to decide where do we want the scene to be technical? You want the seem to be pretty much centered over the apex and so it looks like we need to add an inch to this piece and an inch to this piece because the same should be right in between the two of them were added to both pieces is a process and it takes time and that's why in our workshop we make you do a regular pattern before you're allowed to do princess it just is a lot more steps the same process is just a lot more steps needing to front piece is now out of the way I like to do this alteration with pieces side by side because then I don't forget to do anything, so I'm going to anchor you. What we're going to be doing is sort of the same adjustment we did with the full bust and we need to anchor the edge closest to the center front and I'm just placing the center front line on the grid mark sure these are the same a place I like them to be at the same level and anchor the edge closest to the center front to the table clips I'm not on grain on grant here go okay, so it's anchored here and we're going to cut on the lines and the this is line one by one goes to the shoulder here's line two and here's line four in this pattern we do line for before we do line three you'll see why later and here we have another line one find too on line three so we have to cut and move both pattern pieces might have put them a little too close together to the shoulder seem not to the cut edge and we're moving this one inch okay this swings out so this is why we have to cut line two make it an even match usually opens just a teeny bit and it's probably not even a quarter of an inch and so this is about the same not even a quarter of an inch princess had just come back and fashion in the mid nineteen nineties when we wrote the first fit book and really we had to delay the printing of the book for a year in order to practice princess because how we did in the seventies was really not right and now that was coming on so strong we had to figure it out um over the years we discovered even more things and just f y I this particular pattern has our latest princess instructions in the guide sheet and the main difference is how we've organized it and we've remembered the lines to make it even easier um and we've given you a new order but if you use the instructions in the fifth book, you'll be fine, we've just sort of fine tuned it to perfect it a little bit more, but you if you get the pattern, you have that guide sheet, so and that was the other here was to say, keep the guy treats out the entire time you're making any pattern and believe it or not, the cattle company's worked very hard on the guy cheats, and you know that it cost twenty five thousand dollars to make one pattern because the company that much. And so sometimes when we complain about the price of patterns, which are usually half price anyway, um, you have to go back and think of what it takes to actually you have the drafting department in the pattern making in the grading and all these things happened, and you read the guy cheats. The other tip is keep your pattern pieces out until you are done with the government, because what you should be doing is grabbing a pattern piece here and there, laying it down in your fabric. If you forgot to snip mark something and you really need those marks to match properly, you could lay the pattern back down and do those markings, uh, you want to make sure something hasn't stretched, you've got the pattern piece you can lay down on the neck and see if the neck is stretched really important if you're making like a blazer just don't put them away and we just can't emphasize that enough, right? Nancy? What I have found its very important is when you discover that something doesn't match up on your patterns you always go back and examine why and nine times out of ten it's user air you have miss pinned something likely just a minute copan I think that it's easy to get confused and that's why I examine everything before even put it out of body it's nothing personal, it's just I have I often found myself chasing my tail trying to correct a problem that did not exist but was simply the pattern being pin together incorrectly. Thankyou very good point okay, so I've cut on line one and swung out the side and I've got line to cut haven't even inch in the opening and then we have line three, which will allow this piece to come down to the same level and there's no rhyme, no reason how this relates to this it is what it is you just want to make sure that him is level and you haven't tucked something or wrinkled something elsewhere so people say, well, how much should it be? There isn't a number it's just it is what it is marta is right now looks a lot like the darted front, doesn't it? We've got the dark and it's opened up another wasn't a tart, but you, you know, darted front and created are two we've got the width and we've got the extra length line uh nine three but when we were doing the old way of princess when we're trying to figure out how to do bust on princess, we just said, we'll shoot just let out that seem over the bust, and when we did that, what happened was when were done, they had this big gap in the arm hole, and so it just absolutely wasn't right, so we thought and thought and thought and family we looked at each other and said, well, you know what? With the darted front by doing line one, two and three, the arm hole gap totally disappears when you're done because you're taking that deeper best art and sewing it closed and the arm hole now fitz without a gap, so we decided, well, then let's, try it on a princess on the side panel so that's exactly what we're doing. So when this is all said and done, you get rid of the gap by doing it this way otherwise logic says, so just let it out over the bust and that will give you the room yes, itjust won't fix the arm hole you couldn't let it out over the bust if you're just doing like a porter quarter of an inch, but anything more than that, I actually go through all the steps and do the alteration because it just fits better, so I'm putting tissue in line one and I'm gonna feel in line three, but I'm not going to put in each issue here. This is this is really the magic of this hole process on this particular style pattern and it's one of those things is wow, it just works so no tissue in line to see how nice it is to have pre cut strips so you just don't have to stop, so just make yourself stand in strips into half two inches and then depending on your hip size two and three inch or your best that is sometimes used three inch sometimes reviews for inch invest adjustments, we've done as much as a five inch will bust adjustment. Okay, so now we've added length here and that chorus plates to this line three here. So what I added here, I have to adhere, we've added a little tiny bit there and that's going to match up with this now this is when the magic things it's called move the dart, so this is a dark right now and actually princess patterns back in the fifties. Did a side dark for some reason so you could skip the step and have it sent us to a dart, but what we've discovered is we can cut and close the dark and that opens up the extra length we need over the bust, so it fixes now turn ninety five book we had line one over further, and when you do a dart transfer the further away from where you're doing the transfer, the whiter the darts get and so when that line one was closer to the side, seen this part over the bust opened up a lot and usually it was too much. So now we're going pretty close to that seem so we don't get quite as much opening and no magic to it, but I think you just follow the instructions or follow the lines and just make sure that mine one isn't too far sometimes it khun khun draw it very close to the seam line an hour just to get it it's real close to the seam line is like a quarter inch away from the scene lines it's correctly done in this pattern. Okay, so now we've added some length here and that length has to go on this piece are the reason I like to do these side by side is now we're going to cut line two all the way across here and you're gonna measure at the seam line on this line four, which is a half of an inch and at the same line here this needs to be a half of an inch it won't be the same out of the edge because we already opened like a quarter of an inch before when we did line two. But this scene has to match that theme notice, she says, seem not edge it's at the seam line because if you go to the edge on the side panel it's going to be deeper than it is at the scene this is also a half inch in this case it's straight across the half inch tonight I have my center front on the grid the center front still has to be straight on the grid. I couldn't do this without a gritted table there's gonna be a run on cardboard cutting boards with the grid, but also what do you do if you're working on your dining room table? You can't pin into the table my early cutting table's head cork on top of it because you could pin into it used to be a thing you go to home depot or something, you'd glue it to the table and it worked for pinning and you could get great big sheets of its secret of a four by, you know table, but it had no grid on it, so we could see why I like doing them side by side because then I remember to do all the steps now we have to get back together and put it back on and the first time you do this princess operation it might take you two or three hours because it's a lot of steps you have to think through I've done so many of them it's just a habit so don't be dismayed if it takes a while enough and I wanted to mention that when you do princess especially shoulder princess look, I'm going to talk about it a little bit you did to put scotch tape along the seam line on the front peace then you clip it so that you can curb it around the bump don't put tape on this piece just put tape on this piece and then when you're doing in fabric the convex curve that's on the front you will stay stitch in that bust area and then clip to the stay stitching so that when you pinned together there's no little fuckers the same lines of the same size but the outside edges they're different now I'm putting the curve around and there's clips which allow us the outside edge to release so I'm matching stitching line to stitching line you did notice that marta pattern over so she automatically was able to pinpointing the pens down keep remembering those things like that sewing machine? I think about where I put my pants because I want them if they're in the scene, I'm gonna pull him out as I get to them. I don't want you going like that just think about how you pin so that you can put it in the machine the way it's gonna go the best I've actually switched to pinning for sewing to this way with my pins going parallel to the seam line rather than perpendicular, because technically, you're not supposed to. So over the pins anyway, in this way, you you're forced to take them out and you get to thumb saves a few needles thinking of needles, will mart is pinning here? Um, not a lot of nets you can use a universal needle, which today has a slight ballpoint, which works on its and weapons, but if you get a knit that has a really high of content of spandex, you may need a stretch needle, which has a longer scarf or dent on the back of the needle, and that prevents skips stitches because the universal needle on a really stretchy spandex in it, it will cost get stitches and then there's another one just called ballpoint it just has a slightly more rounded point and on nips that don't have a lot of spandex. Those work on just about all nips that jeanette on the night that you had it it's so open, more sweater knit, and I would probably just go ahead and use the universal on that, which is a slight, you know, ballpoint, but I don't think you'd have any problem, and I'm cana's ponte a a lot of times, I'll use the universal. This is fine that you always test. I think the thing when we were doing the book that I finally decided you had to say is test test, test, test everything on it unless you like to rip, but when you rip, you can have hope because holes in the net, if you're not careful, so test first, take scraps. So seems few stabilizers to all those things before you do it on your garment, and you just saved a lot of time. You'll learn a lot will learn what stitch lengths faster. If you have a surgery with differential feed, you learn whether you need to use the differential feed to keep it from stretching or to cause it to gather a little bit um, test test test on this far more than nonwovens if you're sewing, especially in it, and the needle kind of bounces on the fabric that's when you definitely need a stretch needle, look at the front. So that fits this night, right? I want to see oh, nancy, that looks fabulous but everybody see once for look at that it went from just a pattern that didn't fit two garment that didn't fit oh, but we altered it now the government's going to fit okay, so now we need to make sure we're okay in the hip area that your center right there I've got it under sent about okay it's not the center front and see how this drag line it is happening here that's saying I need more room let out wrinkles point to the problem is what we save it none of this is a problem it's just figure variations but wrinkles usually if they're pointing something that's what needs to be let out or changed for example, if you had sloping shoulders you'd have wrinkles going down like this and that would say it's the shoulder issues so you pull it up and get rid of wrinkles if the wrinkles were going across like this, they're sort of pointing to the outside of the shoulder you just need to get rid of them by letting out the shoulder scene. So let the wrinkle speedier clues especially you're doing pant fitting but really in any city okay, no centerbacks center back way back up center front okay still pulling a little here so what I do sometimes is this is the tummy and sometimes the coming is causing the problem so I'm gonna let out this seem just a little bit across here nancy's just straighter in the front no matter your center look better way back it's like it's hanging straight so that's good forward shoulder do you not go into a forward shoulder interesting this is right on oh let's just give her a quarter I just like this a teeny I mean it's not that much but it could be moved in scene yeah, but it's just a small amount if you miss it in tissue could do it technically this is that same tupi sleeve that we put on jeanette lots of these yeah good so here's where you would pinch it if you just wanted to take nancy you pinch it like you would do go ahead it's just a sleeve on what would you just try to decide? Well looking country? Yep said plenty comfortable and looks like it's really long but in reality this comes to here and then it has room for a cop it's this little guy pull that face so dance he has faltered princess pattern so we can cut out the blouse which we did and this is a textured fabrics on the walk over that way home or the audience to see better that is look at the weight it just drapes you can feel the weight of fabric and that they're weighty they have good drape oh nancy and your color I took my new color found to shop for a last november fancies header colors done and we do a lot of image things with some wonderful image consultants in our area and almost everybody gets their colors that looks very good little bit of fine tune it's not at all unusual for the left and right to be slightly different which is why we want to fit right side's out on dh chips and around you just look at how it hangs it's just it's not at all unusual to have to adjust these seems a minute pull a little of this one out and keep this one the same can you tell us again what type of fabric is this it's a woven textured ray on fabric and I would say it's a hundred percent round no stretch to it at all okay? Rand drapes well effected drapes so well that sometimes darts drop and you have to raise them. This doesn't seem to have dropped it in the best area no it's just great. Yeah it's pretty stable and it's got a lot of body to it and that texture gives it even more body and I just love wonderful fabrics like I've gotten so that if I had all think it's gonna be hard to sew no matter how much I like the color of the print I will not buy it and I like gutsy drapey fabrics okay, so I took you can see not thes air no longer even and that's okay you wanted to fit correctly so she's let something some of the side front out so there wasn't much he's inside front or not there was too much room and yeah friend yes, it fits better see it's much better there now slipped the sleeve on so what you see is what you get I know we sound like a broken record but when it comes to tissue or fabric what you see is what you get ooh perfect fabulous great it's gonna be really pretty place off can I tell you something about this scene when we were fitting this way we talked about this little area and you said, well, you could add a little bit there and so that's what I did right here I added this little bit of both of them just this side okay, well, maybe both but you can look at my pattern and see where I actually let out that seem a little bit like well, I know that it was penny it together I matched him but I noticed you had more tissue of inside because they had those drag lines right, ok? And we're in it and that's what ideas need in a tissue yeah so just disappear on the back plate so that's just you're in case seam allowance it's just yes if you're not sure you can always add extra and I went ahead I saw your extra you'd added to the side panel see where she's added it but I matched him because I didn't know why you have done that but I find that on a lot of people I need more room right here so I put it but if this were not such a soft fabric would probably would need it so it was pulling wrinkles we're going to sears, she added more with but that's okay and we didn't need it we took it out better to be safe than sorry just when we're more pin thank you. What I'm going to do now is show you how to drop the bus line if necessary because we didn't have to do it on nancy something and do it on a side princess put them side by side here and if you had to lower the princess bump area you wantto put them side by side in this particular case lines are drawn on the pattern to make it easy and what we're going to do is draw a box around the bump we drew it box around a dart would do the same thing box around the bump so I want it in case the whole bump this notch isn't quite lined up I want to make sure my nachos are lined up there we go I'm going to draw the box now we're gonna cut way back in the box can be moved uh four down I'm gonna move it down go down an inch and a half just make a note that when you have a princess you get the bump in the right place before you do any altering at all darted fronts you don't worry about whether that dart's pointing to best you alter then you get the dart in the right spot so princess you do it before darted friend should do it after it's just simple and that will help you remember hopefully so now fill in that hole I created when I slid the box down. I made sure didn't overlap it's also why a y for this? If you if you're fullness is down here and the pattern stillness is up here, you can't measure the amount you need because it's not your full of spots so you want to get it to your full spot it is then you measure the amount you need when princess patterns were in style in the seventies, I had I had ladies come to class with princess styles and we'd tissue fit the pattern on them and I couldn't figure out why the bump on the pattern was here why is the bump up there? Why why would they put the bump up there not realizing that needed to be lowered because people were lower? I didn't know I was an a cup, so I didn't have a problem but it was just so funny I could hear why the pattern company brought the pattern right and I didn't know to lower it so we had a bump in the wrong place aren't you glad you didn't come to classes in seven? But I did have the students tissue fit and when I did custom dressmaking I required for fittings from my clients. The first fitting was the tissue the second fitting was cut out in fabric. The third fitting was before I set the sleeve and the fourth fitting was to check the final links and all that kind of stuff. Ok, so now we have another little issue the um paris way skewed, so we have two true the edges, but what we discovered is we need to true differently than we normally do normally we kind of divide the difference between two pieces, but in princess we discovered that we needed to true from the bump to the scene, so I'm actually going to cut off this I'm cutting that one your heart wants the true up, but if you true up you just raising the bump back up so you true down, because if the bump has lowered, you want the whole bump to be lower and down here. This is a little bit so well true that that's, just like this can be confusing that that upper part and so way actually altered by raising and lowering and then drew a sample. Leinart is to act exactly how you true when you lower it, and how you true when you raise it, and its use by the beginning of the princess section of the book raising and lowering. I'm cutting off a little bit down here because I don't want that. So now I've lowered the princess curve that look look logical and that's what we wanted to talk about with princess. All right, well, thank you so much, marta and patty. We have now learned how to do some bust alterations with a couple of different in a couple of different ways. So in our next lesson, we are going. Teo, talk about the scenario where you don't have your fitting buddy with you and learn how teo fit ourselves using a mirror, so we'll look forward to that.

Class Materials

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Class Resources
How to Buy the Right Size Pattern
Sheath Dress Press Release

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Body Map Pattern Alteration Worksheet
Fitting Order For Tops
Size Education
Tailored to Fit Y Bust Tips

Ratings and Reviews


This is one of the best courses I have taken online; I just wish you had the ability to make notes or tabs so you could refer back to certain sections more easily. I have met and followed Pati Palmer for many years but this was my first experience listening to Marta Alto and I see why they work so well together. Thank you both for sharing your many years of experience. It was interesting to hear Pati's history on many things and I really loved Marta's sense of humour it makes watching so much more fun!

Leslie coduti

I sew very well, imagine the disappointment when what I have sewn just does not fit well. Everyone who sews and wants what they have sewn to really be a joy to wear should take this course. It is like being there in the actual workshop. I am only half way through in the viewing and am anxious to apply what I have seen to my own sewing. It has been presented so well and in such detail that one comes away with confidence that they too can do this. I am also impatient, making a muslin takes time. Time is so precious and time to sew is really hard to come by. I have tissue fit pants in a workshop in Michigan and used a Palmer-Pletch pattern for a princess line dress I made in silk on my own. Both items fit my mature figure beautifully, and I did not have to make a muslin first for either one! When you hear, "What you see is what you get" believe it. Take this class, it will improve your fitting ability immensely and you won't believe how easy it is.

Rose Mellor

Love this program! Being able to watch the lessons multiple times is like taking the class over and over. For those of us who have a hard time learning something new this is sensational. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Rose Mellor

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