Sunday, June 08, 2014

Vogue 8972 - Dress Front Pattern Alterations

You should know this before I write it...I used my TNT dress pattern as the basis to make the pattern alterations to the dress.  Now one good thing about this pattern having so many pieces is that there are plenty of opportunities to fit the garment to me.  However, that also means that there are a lot of pieces that need to be altered.

And as an aside, I understand why if you're plus sized, you sew a lot of knit garments, or garments that don't need as much pattern work. Because honestly, even though this Vogue pattern goes up to a size 22, it is not a plus size pattern.

Since the pattern has a custom fit bodice, I'm using the pattern pieces for the D cup size.

Let's start with a picture or two of the size 22 pattern pieces pinned to my TNT dress front pattern:


Full length TNT pattern with Vogue pattern pieces pieced to it

Waist and skirt bottom pattern pieces pinned to the TNT pattern

Top and waist pattern pieces pinned together

There's quite a bit of changes that need to be made. I started with the easiest piece first the yoke. This piece I sliced in half and added 3" to make it fit my dress front.



For the top bodice pieces, I made two changes. I lengthened the side bodice piece by one inch.



The center front bodice piece was widened by one inch at the bottom notch and two inches at the bottom seam.



I'm making one big change with these pattern alterations for the skirt portion of the dress...instead of using a 5/8" seam allowance, I'm using an inch seam allowance.  I've just found in my last couple of garments that I've needed to sew the seams really tight as in 1/2" to 3/8" seam allowances...so this will just give me a little more room to adjust the fit for me.

Then I added 2" to the center skirt front piece...



...1" was added to the side piece.  All of these additions were done at the inside seam allowances so that I wouldn't affect the basic shape of the dress.


Then I started the process all over again on the back pieces...but since there are just as many changes to the back...I'm going to give it a separate post because this many pattern alterations has got to make your eyes glaze over. Hey they would make mine go blurry!  However, there are some sewists that appreciate seeing the changes made to patterns and how to make them work for a body that isn't the standard. If that's not you, I totally understand! Come back when the title post says "Vogue 8972 - Final" then you know that you'll get to see all the pretty pictures "hopefully" of the finished dress.

...as always more later!




42 comments:

  1. I find it very helpful to see how you do it. Thanks for all these photos and for explaining things so well.

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  2. Carolyn, I enjoy your lessons as they are very helpful. There are a lot of pieces to this dress. Have fun as you always do on this sewing journey!

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  3. I'm sure all this work will be worthwhile!

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  4. Thank you for posting this lesson. I'm working on my TNT dress and these instructions will come in handy in the future.

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  5. Thank you so much for showing your process. I can't wait to see the resulting dress.

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  6. I appreciate your showing your process. I fell off the right side of the pattern envelope, got back on, and am currently off again, and it is helpful to see how you've fixed a new pattern out of the envelope so that it'll fit. :) Thanks!

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  7. Interesting, I always like to see how someone does their fitting adjustments. I did make this pattern about 2 months ago and thought it was deceptively difficult to fit in the armholes, i really changed the shape as they were very tight. just a suggestion, add to the seam allowance at the armhole and then you will have room to put the sleeve on at the most comfortable spot. I look forward to seeing your version :)

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    1. Thanks Beth! I haven't cut the fabric yet so I will definitely make that adjustment to the front and back armholes. I noticed that there was a difference between the armhole (lower) on my TNT pattern and the new pattern. I should have double checked that so thanks again!

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  8. I have made this dress and had to make very minor alterations but I still find this post fascinating and useful. It's just great to see how you do it!

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  9. I don't need to make many alterations but I find yours fascinating and your whole process inspiring. Your finished dresses are always so beautiful and so faithful to the original design.

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  10. Thank you Caroline. I am attempting my first dress since my weight went up 60#. I was thinking of texting you for advice b/c you handle the patterns so well and your dresses are so beautiful. You must have read my mind.

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  11. I love posts like this. I am a plus sized sewer who uses a size 28w. I tried for years to figure out how to get the highest vogue sizes to fit with no luck but as there are fewer and fewer patterns being made in a 28w, I am ready to try again. Seeing how you go about upsizing then is very inspiring.

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    1. Wicked Pixie I'm using my TNT Pattern like a sloper...except that it has the ease and seam allowances included. I find it easier to fit new patterns to a TNT pattern than to work from scratch. Honestly I don't know enough grading information to properly grade up a smaller pattern.

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  12. Thank you for posting your alterations, very enlightening, can't hardly wait to see the final dress! You are right only finish dresses are posted and seems that they poofed the outfits with no fitting problems etc.

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  13. I think this kind of post is particularly helpful to not just plus size women. I've been professionally sewing for clients of all sizes for many years and everyone requires some pattern alteration. Most beginner sewists don't realize that these are necessary for a perfect, custom fit. And a custom fit is what sewing can give every 'body'!

    Karen

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  14. I just found your blog, and I am already learning so much. Thank you for sharing your work!

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  15. This is great! I was wondering how on earth you used your TNT pattern to adjust other patterns. Now I see! Genius. :)

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  16. Thank you for posting this. I follow your blog closely and found it difficult to understand how you adjusted patterns with your TNT pattern 'sandwich'. This post really helps especially with patterns that have a lot of pieces. I'm getting a clearer picture now. I have a few questions, but I'll reserve them until you complete the process.

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    1. Robin ask any question you want. You don't have to wait until the end!

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  17. Very informative. Thank you for sharing!

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  18. Definitely appreciate the photos. still following..

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  19. This is so interesting! I'm finally working on a sloper so I don't have to spend so much time making muslins, but it's hard to visualize how to alter patterns with lots of pieces. This is so helpful!

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  20. It's good to know other people besides me take the time to alter TNT patterns rather than go out and purchase new ones. The good news is once you make your alterations and adjustments, you have a perfect fit -- which is one of the major reasons for sewing in the first place. Waiting to see the finished product.

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  21. I think it is wonderful and extremely important to document the sewing process via the blogosphere. It is a terrific resource to help someone with a question about a process like this one! Thanks for taking the time to photograph and explain it.

    And, as always, it is lots of fun to see the final product! Looking forward to the finished dress!

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  22. You have just made my day....for the life of me I always had such a horrible time making adjustments on garments with one too many pattern pieces. But now I see how you do yours....I can only try. Thank you so much.

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    1. It really is just taking it piece by piece. I'm glad that you're learning something from my adventures.

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  23. Fabulous work and a great explanation. Thanks, Carolyn.

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  24. Thanks for showing your technique-I'm starting to get it now!

    What do you use for your TNT pattern? Is that some kind of plastic or laminate? Thanks!

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    1. My TNT dress pattern is a paper pattern. I've been working with it for at least 10-12 years...and I think this is the third time I've copied it to pattern paper.

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  25. Thank you for sharing. I'm a new follower, did you draft your own TNT dress or is it a commercial pattern?

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    1. My TNT pattern is from an out of print pattern. You can read about the evolution of the pattern in the tab "Popular Posts"

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  26. Your garments are beautifully fitted and sewn. Thanks for the inspiration to tackle pattern adjustments. Patterns rarely fit me out of the envelope and the garment ends up not fitting so well. When you end up with more wadders than wearable outfits it is very disheartening. But reading your blog has inspired me to think, plan, learn more and to keep going.

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  27. Nope, eyes not blurry at all. I really appreciate you taking the time to post your alterations. Even I don't need the same ones, it helps me to see what I do need. Thanks!

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  28. Your post in how you use your TNT are incredibly useful. I am not a plus size but have many fitting issues. Doing what you do with a TNT pattern would definitely cut the fitting time down. How did you determine which pattern to make a TNT? Do you have other TNT patterns for different garments such as a skirt, blouse, pants, or princess top?

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  29. You inspire me to keep trying for those fashion forward looks. Love your style!

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  30. I like how you go about getting the pattern pieces to fit your TNT pattern. We all have some sort of fitting issues, well most of us do, so I find it interesting how each person does it. Something to be learned all the time. I have been trying some new techniques from watching Craftsy videos that have worked great and others that I decided how I was making certain adjustments worked just fine!

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  31. Thank you for showing your alterations. I often use two or three patterns to make one dress but I don't quite have the confidence to show the world my "behind the scenes."

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  32. Carolyn, thank you for sharing your pattern alterations. There are some patterns I wouldn't even attempt to alter because they are intimidating because they aren't the standard bodice and skirt pattern pieces. Watching you tackle one of these gives me the courage to try.

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  33. Thanks for sharing your alterations. I have taken to tweeking a new pattern or two from a tnt and honestly was questioning if I knew what I was doing. However, it yield a nice fit.

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    1. Sheila - we are doing the same thing and why not? Why start all over again when you already have patterns that fit you just fine!?

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