Sunday, 6 February 2011

In it for the win

So I got the email for this week's challenge - and we are encouraged to try new things so here I go!

1. My first pattern from Marjorie's stash
2. My first FBA
3. My first Muslin
4. My first blouse

I have chosen this pattern (note the words "quick n easy" on the bottom left):

I am doing view A as it has sleeves (it's still cold here!) and no collar so looks the easiest....

As it is for someone with a 32 inch bust and mine is 42 inches (!), I have had to size up the pattern. This is called grading a pattern apparently and I downloaded instructions from However after 2 minutes of impatient puzzlement I threw the instructions away and just used this "fashion ruler" (which used to belong to Marjorie's sister, another generous gift) to add 20mm all the way around the pattern.

I then used page 80 of my 1963 McCall's Sewing Book to find out how to do an FBA (Full Bust Adjustment).

So, as it was all a bit made up and slapdash I thought I'd better try to do a muslin, which I hadn't heard of until a couple of weeks ago but is basically making your garment with cheap material to see if it will fit before you go to the expense and effort of doing it properly. Obviously you don't waste time finishing it (or I didn't!), it's just a rough trial thing.

Look away now if you don't want to be scarred by seeing me with no make up in my pj bottoms wearing a blouse I just made out of old curtain lining and that is held together with a pin where the zip will go. You have been warned.

(Extra warning for the fainthearted: there is a shot which includes my pyjamaed bottom.)

I have no shame, I ventured downstairs for my hubbie to take these photos and we have a friend here as well, luckily a good friend, who has come over to watch the Super Bowl (Superbowl?). They are going to stay up until daft o'clock as it doesn't even start (kick off, whatever) until midnight or something. Weird.

Anyway, for this week's sewweekly challenge we are busting our stashes so I have found some material I had waiting for an opportunity like this, wish me luck ....


  1. I'm so impressed at all your "firsts" you took on this week! I just bought a french curve this week and am building up the courage to tackle using it to resize a pattern and make a muslin. If it helps, this page really helped me to get an idea of how sizing patterns up and down works:

    It also has some other great sewing tips. Thanks for inspiring and encouraging me to give re-sizing patterns a go!

  2. Thanks Amanda! You are too kind. I will look at the site you suggest - my hit and miss effort at grading kind of worked but I think only because the pattern was so simple to start with! I am sticking to a modern pattern this week....