Friday, November 27, 2009

the helpful croquis

I will be doing quite a bit of sewing after the winter holidays, and will be planning a coordinated group of clothing. It's really useful to be able to sketch out possibilities; most of us don't look much like the seven-foot-tall all-legs images on the pattern envelopes. I've made myself a handy helper, a pocket sized croquis, drawn out on an index card that I can keep in my planner. The dark outline shows through regular (thin) computer paper, and makes it really easy to sketch in possible clothing combinations.

Since my personal proportions are a bit different than "standard" I also did this interesting exercise to determine where my areas of variability are. I already knew that my shoulders are very narrow, that's been a given my entire adult life, but I didn't know that not only are my lower legs a bit longer than in proportion, but that the distance from my bust point to my leg break point is almost 4" shorter than would be proportional. This information is not only useful when altering patterns to fit well; it allowed me to adapt the croquis to more accurately reflect my appearance, which allows for trial-and-error in the sketching stage, rather than sewing up things that won't make me happy when I wear them.
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Lefthand image is the Sewing Workshop "Teagarden T", a pattern that I already have and have made up several times in various fabrics, worn with Vogue 8499, a Marcy Tilton design that I'm thinking of sewing, hoping the pants will be both comfortable and a bit more stylish than my overalls.

Righthand image is the croquis, sketched on a 3x5 index card and then traced over with a finepoint Sharpie. While it doesn't look much like what you see on a pattern envelope or in an advertisement, it looks a whole lot like what I see in the mirror...

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