Monday, June 13, 2011

Meet my fitting companion... and the scavenger hunt challenge!

I am done with assembling my muslin for the first LBD fitting (the picture is at the end of the post), but before we proceed to the mystery challenge, I thought I need to share with you something I found extremely valuable throughout my fitting experience (ok, I admit, my fitting experience is a work-in-progress thing). Nevertheless,.. my fitting companion, this Moleskine notebook. It is my best friend when it comes to fitting! And if you want to have one too, here are some suggestions on how to use it:
  • Get yourself a nice notebook in an appealing color (I love Moleskines, for example, and if I pick a nice color like red or hot pink, it motivates me to use the notebook more often). So, from now on, this notebook will be your fitting reference!
  • Every time you make a new note, write down the date.
  • Take your measurements and write them down (don’t forget the date!). 
  • Before fitting, put on your regular undergarments (be daring! treat yourself to some very nice underwear). Now, take a picture of yourself from all sides: front, back, left side, right side. The point is to take a look at yourself and your irregularities from a different prospective. I was surprised how much more I discovered through such a picture. Next, paste it on the first page of your fitting notebook (you can also write a note: “I love my body!” - I did - or be even more specific about what you love about your body most!)
  • Now, whenever you fit a garment, take pictures from all sides and paste them in the notebook. Make notes, doodle, have fun!  
  • Next to the pictures, make a note of what adjustments you made and how. Most likely, you will need the same adjustment many times, so why reinventing the wheel.
  • Store you fitted muslins and reference them in your notebook for any similar designs. 
And, finally, my LBD in pre-fitted stage (however, after some crazy adjustments - the pattern was two sizes smaller). 

By the way, please feel free to critique the muslin: the more comments, the merrier! I am in the process of refitting it, and I would love to read what you think. Some comments on fitting are already there, now it's your turn! Treat it as a scavenger hunt challenge! And, please-please-please, no "it looks great" comments - we want to learn together, right? 


  1. I´ve been meaning to get one of this too but... a picture of my back self on the first page? Mmmmh...
    As for the muslin, I´m not an expert and the photos don´t usually show the real thing, but I would check the neckline for gaposis and probably give it a good press to smooth out wrinkles.
    Great blog, thanks for your interesting posts!!

  2. Yay, Maria, haven't seen you for a while! Thanks for your suggestion - I think it does suffer from some light gaposis in the front, you are right!

  3. I like your idea of using a 'luxery' notebook to get your motivation up. I'll have to get a new notebook.

  4. Hi Marina,
    I really am a very green beginner stitcher but one thing I've been wondering is how on earth do you make changes yourself, especially to the back? Not unless you have a special set of extra long, flexible arms of course!!

    Can I ask, why did you mark the middle picture as 'too much strain'? Or can you feel it is too tight? It looks OK!

    Also, where you say the 3rd picture has the back bodice too long, is this because the seam is not completely horizontal?

    I guess I'm just trying to understand the whole muslin fitting process!! Thank you :)

  5. Great idea to keep a notebook!
    I just wanted to add that you look to have a lower R shoulder than L shoulder (you're right-handed I bet!). This could also be contributing to the collapsed L bust area.
    Otherwise, I think it looks great (whoops!)

  6. Your brave to do this. I always think it's too much like hard work to make a sloper. I am sure you will reap the rewards when you are finished though!

  7. I love this idea and had not thought of it before! I recently bought a beautiful spiral topped sketchbook at B&N that i've been using for ideas. I'm going to add this to it as well.

  8. The first thing that catches my eye is the gaping at the neck, only because I have the same issue on my muslins.

    Great idea on the notebook. I have a pretty book that I bought for sewing notes, but it's too pretty to use. I end up using sticky notes instead. Thanks for the motivation to go ahead and use it.

  9. You picture does not blow really big. A bigger size would have help the poor short sitted me. But for what I can see, I will dido Diahn, you neck line is gaping front a back (if I see well). You seem to have nailed the rest.

  10. These are really great tips, perhaps they may cure my hatred of muslins in the first place. Not too sure about pasting photos of myself in my undies though, can you imagine if the book got lost?

  11. That is so interesting! I had read on a ladies tailoring site that you should measure skirt lengths / trouser lengths on BOTH sides, and from your pictures I now see why. I wonder if fitting patterns really highlight even small differences, like your shoulder hight, more than usual. I'm off to get a lovely notebook, hot pink, or maybe Hermès orange.



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