Fitting Talia was a much longer journey than I think it needed to be.
I started right. Jen provides a worksheet, which I used, in her Craftsy Class. It’s basically a list of critical places to measure in the first column. Second is the same critical measures but from the pattern. Third column is the calculated differences. According to that chart my circumferences were within tolerances plus/minus 1/4″. The leg length changes( -2 above knee and -2 above hem) were spot on. But the crotch was different. Her chart would have me adding 3.25″ to the back and subtracting 1/4″ from the front. I measured a finished pant and started from there. I did indeed add 4″ height but only to offset the 4″ hip dart that I removed. a push? So far I have removed the 1/4″ from the front crotch rise but may need to remove more. Jen does state that these are beginning points and will change according to what the muslin reveals. Right now, I’d said thumbs-up because I started with enough circumference in the right places i.e. at about the right lengths.
I may haven added time to the process when I worked with Peggy Sager’s Hip Line Dart. The hip line dart is an easier alteration than Jens diagonal dart but required a 2nd alteration to increase the back rise. The 3rd alteration of scooping is something I usually do to finesse the pattern into my shape. I may not keep using the hip line dart because my center back still dips/sags. When I used Jen’s Diagonal Dart on other patterns I did not have a CB problem. Jen’s dart is more difficult to transfer to tissue and would require a 2nd alteration to level the hems. Plus, Jen’s dart doesn’t completely remove all the back wrinkles. The crotch can only be distorted so much and then other issues develop. As Jen says, sometimes it is better to accept a few wrinkles. Maybe it’s better to accept a little sagging?
I also added time when I corrupted, Tissue 3. Tissue 3 should have been near perfect instead of a totally wasted piece of good fabric. Then it took time to discover what went wrong. Sure I could have skipped that process but I think it’s important to understand errors — mostly so I can avoid them in the future. I know that the mere tracing of an original and then making minor length changes can result in errors in the tissue. Usually I’m not off more then 1/8″ . I discover and correct that during truing the seams. This time, I not only introduced some error, I got the whole crotch angled incorrectly. I’m not sure how that happened. When I trace, I tape my original to my cutting table and tape my tracing paper on top. I draw my grainline and at least one lengthen/shorten line immediately. It’s a quick on-the-go check. If I see these 2 lines have shifted, which can happen through the action of the pen pressing against the paper-I know to stop and realign. The knock knee alteration canted the grainline above the knee. I intended and thought I was using the knee HBL and grainline below the knee. When I removed the KK on Tissue 02, I thought I retrued the grain. At the time, it seemed that starting with the original and making fewer alterations would have resulted in a more accurate pattern. I’m thinking the error occurred when I smoothed the crotch alterations.
I’m sure, dead-positive, that fabric is a big part of the equation. I expected the 100% Rayon used in Muslin 02 to soften and meld slightly with the body. It ‘melded’ enough to cover any pattern defects.I’m certain of that because Peri required changes to the waist, crotch and ease distribution that weren’t even hinted at by the Rayon muslin. While Peri is finished and thankfully, wearable, I still have an issue with the back crotch and maybe side-to-front lengths.
Summary of ALL Tissue changes:
(that includes Tissue 01, 02 and Peri version)
- Traced Size 18
- Leg Length
- -2″ above the knee
- -2″ below the hem.
- +1″ to back extension
- -4″ Back Hip Line Dart
- +4″ Back Rise
- -3/4″ Scoop — not transfered to tissue because the scoop depth can be different with different fabrics
- Align front and back at stitching point; trim excess extension length (makes easier to align when sewing)
- Seam Allowances
- +1/2 side seams
- -1″ Front
- +1″ Back
- Front 3/4″ horizontal tuck below waistband
- Hem turn 1.25″ instead of 1″
- Asymmetrical offset
- trimmed 1/4″ at waist from right front and back – not transferred to tissue. My left side does not need the offset. To me, it’s easier to make the adjustment at finishing instead of trying to make full left and right sides.
I hope I’ve written down all the changes and copied them all back to Tissue 02. Despite the drama, I give Talia Two Thumbs Up. It finished with a 16″ hem and without masses of wrinkles or excess ease over my back thigh. Talia is, to me, a slack fit. Not really body conscious but close enough to indicate a woman is inside while loose enough to indicate I’m a lady. This is the fit I’ve searched for and wanted for a very long time. It seems during the last decade we’ve either had form fitting, body conscious or total body concealment fitting styles. I’m really happy to have purchased and made the effort to get the fit I desire. Without a doubt there will be more copies of Talia in my wardrobe.