Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Copying a RTW skirt

My lovely 83 year old bride-to-be brought me a skirt which she likes to copy for her wedding outfit.  It is one of the simplest garments to copy, being a simple six gore skirt - no darts, no gathers, no intricate details.  Here's how I like to do it.

Firstly I had to have an appropriate surface.  I need to poke pins through the garment into paper, so it has to be padded, but not so soft that I can't hold down garment sections with my hand without distortion.  Like this.  This is a blanket folded in four, and when I press down the paper distorts, which would make an accurate copy harder to achieve.

This is the blanket folded in two.  When I press down on the paper there is very little distortion. A carpeted floor is also good, but hard on the back to be hunched over!

To copy each section I placed pins vertically through the piece to be copied to hold it in place, then used another pin to poke through at intervals all along the seam lines all around the piece.  I couldn't get a photo of the the pricked holes unfortunately, but basically after pricking off the piece you connect the dots to reproduce your garment section.

To copy the centre front I aligned and pinned the seam lines and lined up the CF along a ruler before following the same process.

After adding nice wide seam allowances, the pattern is ready to go.

The first fitting showed the skirt needed minor alterations at the waist, and the top a couple of tweaks, which show up nicely when drawn onto my toile with a sharpie.  The shoulders are too wide, the waist needs to come in a little, and the CB seam needs to be slightly more contoured.

The sleeve didn't hang well when moved into place, so for our second fitting I modified it to raise the sleeve cap and narrow the sleeve.  This is the altered pattern on top of the original sleeve. (The diagonal overlap is where I joined two pieces of paper to make the original sleeve pattern.  Ignore it).  The pattern has been slashed vertically and horizontally, with the vertical slash overlapping, and the horizontal one spread.

At our second fitting this was a big improvement, but I'm going to do the same thing again to get a bit more height and a bit less width.

And for myself I've started working on a trench jacket.  Progress post on that to follow!

No comments:

Post a Comment