Drafting a Faux Wrap Dress Part 1

So now that I have a bodice sloper, I really wanted to make a wrap knit dress. I found a sample on Pinterest that I really liked. It was New Look 6429, which was out of print but I think I can mimic it pretty easily.

So first I trace my bodice sloper front, drawing in the princess seam style line to the cross front through the waist darts. I flipped over the front to extend it across the center. The center front is going to be a wrapped cross front, tying into the princess seams. I redrafted the neckline to slope across. I moved the shoulder line out from the high neck point ½ inch. I added notches to aid in matching the pieces.

Next I trace the back sloper and draw in the princess style lines and open the neckline out by ½ inch just like the front. I also eliminated the back shaping.

Then I manipulate out the shoulder darts. Suzy Furrer, in her pattern drafting book, describes doing these steps first before removing the ease and adjusting the pattern for a knit. I also manipulate out the bust darts and the waist shaping.

I flipped the front centerpiece over and traced it. Then I slashed and spread between the notch just below the bust and the notch just below the waist. The right front will be gathered into the princess seam. The left front will be underneath and only go to just below the waist.

img_1045

Then I draw out the skirt on each piece by drawing out 24 inches from the waist. I wanted the hemline just below the knees. I also selected a point 2 inches below the low hipline where the skirt starts to angle out. I wanted it to skim the waist and hips then flare out at the bottom. I made the final hemline width twice the waist width on each piece. I may have to adjust this some for more flare.

Now I have to remove the ease on the side seams.  Plus I checked the shoulder seams to make sure it matched.  Now on to the sample!

Drafting a Knit Pencil Skirt

 

I think pencil skirts are very cute and my mom bought me one a while back. Every time I wear it I am reminded how uncomfortable they can be. I like to walk fast and they just don’t allow much movement. Forget going up stairs. So now that I have my new skirt block I wanted to draft a pencil skirt pattern and make one out of a heavy scuba double knit to mimic the firmness of a woven fabric. The knit will make it so much easier to walk in.

First I trace my block onto new paper in red pen.  I got so excited about my drafting that I forgot to take pictures of each step.  Sorry!

Then I make my first set of alterations in orange. I learned a trick some years ago about using the colors of the rainbow to determine what set of alterations I was on. It was hard to keep track of what the most recent alteration was so now I just look for the color the furthest down the rainbow! The next set of alterations includes marking the potential yoke and taper to the hem.

Then I cut out the pieces and tape the dart closed on the yoke. Next, I trace the pieces again to their final shape and  add the seam allowances, hem allowance, and the kick pleat extension on the back.  Next time I think I will do the final seam allowance and marker addition in black so when I am digging through all my paper copies I can tell which one is the final version.  I tend to not throw anything away until the project is finished, just in case.  But, then I find myself looking at all the versions trying to figure out what one I am on!

Notice I did not do a seam allowance at the center front as it will be cut on the fabric fold as will the yoke front. Now I am ready to cut my fabric. I chose a heavy scuba knit from Vogue Fabric Store in black.

img_1024

I assembled the skirt as if it were a woven fabric including a zipper in the back, seam stabilizer at the waist, and interfacing on the inner set of yokes.

The final skirt!

img_1050

Drafting a Sloper or Pattern Block Part 6: Summary of Lessons Learned

 

Wow, what an extensive project this was. It took a lot of time and a lot of trial and error to finally draft and fit a basic block pattern for myself. Once I got them all where I liked them I traced them on to poster board for durability. For the most part they will be traced on to paper and then altered to get the ease needed for the fabric.

The best bodice directions were: Suzy Furrer class in Craftsy

The best sleeve directions were: Madalynne

The best skirt directions were: Laura After Midnight

The best pant directions were: Burda Style

I am so excited to try and start drafting my own patterns!  I still have a few more blocks to make.  Suzy Furrer had several basic pant slopers she recommends and several sleeve slopers.  The thing with sleeves is they draft from the bodice so they probably have to be drafted every time.

If you read my post on the cowl blouse, then you probably saw my first pattern draft attempt.  My next step is to draft a knit pencil skirt.  Then I have a dress in mind I want to try.

Drafting a Sloper of Pattern Block part 5.5: the Sleeve Muslin

 

As you can see my Suzy Furrer sleeve muslin looks pretty good but I had some trouble easing the sleeve cap in to the sloper so it may have to be adjusted slightly. The height looks good but just a little wide.

 

Here is the Madalynne sleeve.

 

Here are some cap sleeves I am trying to draft for this blouse I am making.

 

I didn’t even make a muslin of the weird one with all the darts at the elbow.  I just never thought I’d use it.  Overall I think the Madalynne sleeve fit the best and had the easiest instructions.  There was less ease that needed to be worked in and it fit together the easiest.