Saturday, March 01, 2014

Pattern placement FAIL

Petit Main Sauvage and Little Hunting Creek have been discussing pattern matching and placement.  Lauriana wrote, "For those and for anyone who feels intimidated by matching prints, I'd like to present this picture as a bit of encouragement."

In that same spirit, I would like to own up to a recent spectacular FAIL from my own studio. I've been meaning to try Vogue 8805 for some time, especially after I've seen several cute versions crop up on the internets. The custom-fit sizing for A/B/C/D cups holds special appeal; no futzing with SBAs.

Most reviews mentioned that it fits like a loose sack and that they went down 1-2 sizes.  My upper chest is about 12A, but my upper back width is more like a 10.  So I traced a size 12A front and 10 back.  Some reviewers mentioned that they shortened the top yokes to cap sleeve length and I did the same.

Look how nicely the shoulders and bust fit.
I eliminated the back opening and used a self-fabric knit neckband.  Again, the fit is spot on.

One reviewer added pockets, which sounded handy.  I followed suit.

I found the navy slub knit (yoke) and cotton border print bark cloth at SAS Fabrics.  The bark cloth is a panel print, roughly 37" long and 45" wide, counting wide white selvedges.  I would have listened to my inner voice that said that I need to add girth at my size 14 hips.  And the warning light that suggests adding a little bit extra for the pockets.  However, there just wasn't enough fabric, as you can see from the scraps left after cutting.

Because I had only one panel and barely enough width, there was no point in trying to balance or match the patterns.  I just laid down my pattern pieces and cut.

Can you see the problem on the front?

How about on the back?


Yeah, it's that bad.  Oh, well.  The two fabrics feel lovely.  My construction was superb.  The lack of pattern matching was unavoidable.  The pattern placement?   Well, can I also plead lack of fabric?  Or does my total lack of judgement take the blame?

I'm going to place the traced pieces back into the envelope along with a note to myself about what to do next time.  The dress might fit Iris, who is narrower in the hips and all legs.  The sunflower motifs might hit her in less unfortunate places.  If she gives it the thumbs down, it goes to Goodwill.

Meanwhile, I purchased this cotton/silk camo print for Iris and the flying bird cotton for myself at The Fabric Store.
Would you believe she does NOT like the camo and loves the birds? Ever the self-sacrificing mom, I'm going to swap pieces with her.  The birds are overprinted on a jacquard with solid and sheer areas.  Oddly, the birds fly down the length of the yardage instead of across.  What should I make with  (1.5 yds of 44" wide) this?  A skirt?  A blouse?


13 comments:

  1. That might be one of those things that only you notice - it wasn't completely clear to me what the problems were. maybe try wearing it out and see what your nearest and dearest think?

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  2. Bummer about your dress because it does look spectacular if you ignore the pasties.

    I think you should consider the birds as water fowl, diving for food. ;)

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  3. The dress itself is lovely, although the placement is, to put it mildly, problematic. I can see how you might be uncomfortable wearing it, regardless of what other people might or might not notice. It is so easy, when trying to get everything right, to unintentionally get something oh so wrong.

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  4. I like your dress, even with the pattern where it is. I hope it fits Iris! I have that pattern too, and will take your hip comments to heart, as I have to do a dual FBA, being blessed with a full bust and full hips but smaller waist. I like your use of a border print. I'll have to hang mine on the dress form to check the pattern placement.

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  5. I LOVE that dress! Can you save it by rotating the patterned panel 180 degrees so the back is at the front, and vice versa?

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    1. Unfortunately, no. It has bust shaping and front side seam pockets.

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    2. Oh, I see it now. At first I thought the patterned part was a different fabric from the medium blue...hmmm...what if you made it into a separate fabric by cutting as close as you can to the border of where the pattern meets the medium blue, and then rotating it? Or do the pockets get in the way? (I can NOT give up on this dress, it's too cute!)

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    3. I don't mind walking away from this dress. I spent $4 on materials and ~4 hours on construction. I still have the pattern alteration notes for the next iteration, so I've chalked this up to a learning experience.

      The chances of finding a size 10-12 A-cup outside of my family are slim to none. So, it either goes to my kid or out the door. Or, I may chop it off into a top for her.

      Manufacturing is making a come-back in LA and I have access to so many small cuts of nice fabric for next to nothing; my projects tend to have a low financial commitment.

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  6. Oh no! For the birds, I'd do a tunic or leggings. http://kwiksew.mccall.com/k3463-products-20032.php?page_id=3334

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    1. The bird print is non-stretch woven. But Iris is on the same vibe. She wants a shift-dress that she can layer with leggings.

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  7. Anonymous16:25

    If you really, really LOVE the fabric and the pattern, I'd suggest taking the bottom off the top and recutting it so as to have a tunic-length top. But I can't see from the dress on the mannequin that it looks so bad as it is.
    Barbara

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    1. Iris tried it on. It's loose on her, but not in a bad way. Although I am 2" taller, we have the same inseam (she's all legs). The print placement looks fine on her. Yay!

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  8. The flying birds fabric is incredible--I can see why Iris claimed it.

    Pattern placement is a killer. If I manage to remember to avoid headlights in the front, then I will surely have them in the back, or vice versa. It's cute though!

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