This has been a very long, very hectic month. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to have been so occupied. But by the time the dust had settled, a whole month had gone by. And the blog lay, once again, abandoned. Oi. Not to worry though! I have a month’s worth of projects to post about, and they’re all going to publish over the coarse of this week. (Lucky you.) Let’s get started, shall we?

(Think of this as a post-dated entry – June 12)

About this time last month, I had finished patterning a shirt for the fiancee, Matt (@FunButtonPress), to wear to the Little Black Helicopters Gallery Show opening. This is the one that he had designed some fabric on Spoonflower to look like redacted government documents. The fabric is really cool! I think it would make a really cute circle skirt.

Most of the 44" width is in this shot (for scale)

Most of the 44″ width is in this shot (for scale)

close up of the words

close up of the words

So I have the fabric, and the pattern is finished. I get to work on making it and have it finished in 5 hours. When I have him try it on, and it is HUGE on him! I’m blaming it on the fact that we’ve been working out in the morning for the last couple of weeks. Obviously, it’s a good problem to have. However, this means that not only is the pattern wrong, but I’m also going to have to adjust the sloper. Ah, well.

With the adjustments made, it’s fits him great. One minor problem with this pattern was the neck was too wide. No too much, but enough that I noticed it. Overall, I’m pretty happy with it.

Forgive the model -  I really need a men's form

Forgive the model – I really need a men’s form

The main thing that I took away from this was menswear is fairly different from womenswear. Probably seems obvious, but from a patternmaking perspective I thought it was actually going to be simpler. I am used the way a woman’s bodice takes shape on the paper as you plot the points, and add darts, pleats, etc. When plotting out his torso (and thus the shirt front and back) it was a foreign experience. When using a guide for pattermaking, you can’t expect your pattern to look like the example image. It is based on average measurements, which are fictional.

I was trying to consider simultaneously what I was seeing in the example image in my guide, what I was seeing as I was plotting out the pattern, and previous experience in drafting womenswear. Once I would get myself thoroughly frustrated, my mantra became ‘trust in the math.’ (I failed math once in high school). Eventually, I made it through, but this was definitely a learning experience.

On a closing note, I was named one of seven People’s Choice winners for the Party Like a Rock Star Sewing Contest. This means I won a $100 to Fashion Patterns by Coni (the pattern company I made my outfit from), and have progressed the finals. I am now being considered for the top three spots. The first place winner will get a ‘Imagine’ Baby Lock Serger. Fingers crossed!

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