f

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Adjusting The Fit of The Magic Bias Dress

Good Morning All!
I received a question about how to adjust the fit of the Magic Bias Dress from Fashion In Harmony, and I was asked if there are side seams for adjusting. I decided to do a special post to answer the question as I thought an explanation might be helpful to many of you who are making the dress.

Just as a review, there are 3 main pieces to the dress. 2 sleeve patterns are included, but of course the sleeves is optional, the 3 main pattern pieces of the dress are not. 
There are no side seams in the dress. Look closely at the picture below. The largest pattern piece is the main body of the dress. You see the armholes and the back neck which are angled to the side. The smaller pattern piece in the top right hand corner is the front inset and includes the front neckline. Then there is a long triangular pattern piece. The long triangular piece is your key piece for adjusting the fit of the pattern.

A few notes on bias garments;
Remember that the bias grainline has the most stretch of the 3 grainlines in a piece of fabric. Typically, when a garment hangs on the bias, due to the stretchy nature of the bias grainline, it is not necessary to adjust the fit. With that said, bias garments look best if there are 4" to 7" of ease at the hips, at the VERY minimum, 3" of ease. Remember, we want the garment to skim the body and not cling or appear tight. 

If your shoulders are quite narrow compared to your bust and hip measurements, then it would be best to adjust the pattern. If your shoulders are quite narrow, choose your pattern size based on your upper bust measurement and then make adjustments to the pattern.

The key to adjusting the Magic Bias Dress is the triangular pattern piece. Simply draw a line down the center of the pattern piece. Cut down the center of the pattern piece. If you need to adjust for a larger bust measurement, spread the top portion of the pattern piece the amount needed to obtain the desired ease for the bust. Also spread for the hips. If you need to adjust for an even larger hip measurement, the spread may angle out at the hip area. 
If the bust is fine, but you need more in the hips, cut down the center of the pattern and then keep the top portion of the triangle pattern piece together but spread for the hips.   


So now you see more of the "magic" of this pattern. A bias garment that's cut on the straight of grain is revolutionary. The fact that you can adjust the pattern by simply spreading what seems like a rather non-important pattern piece is ingenious! 

If you have any other questions about the pattern, please ask and I will do my best to answer. 



Share this PostPin ThisShare on TumblrShare on Google PlusEmail This

19 comments:

  1. Thanks, Rhonda. I am looking at my pattern and now I'm thinking it's just going to be huge on me. The smallest range of the smallest size is larger than my upper bust (31 1/2). I usually use my sloper to check my shoulders and armhole. Is there any value in trying to check the shoulder against my sloper? I may try that anyway, and be your "petite" sized guinea pig. I am 5'2", and my measurements are 34, 26, 34.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I just checked the pattern, and the measurements for the small are almost your exact measurements, just a smudge more in the hips. I think you will be fine. The only issue will be the length. Just know going in the it is going to be quite long in you, so you will want to shorten it. When you do shorten the dress, just be sure to not be overly anxious and cut too much off the first time. Cut a little, check it, and then cut a little more.

      Delete
    2. Thanks, Rhonda. I also bought the book so I will go forth with most of my anxiety in check. When I see "finished measurement 40", it's a whole new world! I'm looking forward to it.

      Delete
  2. Rather brilliant! While I've yet to pull off a bias dress that looks good on me, I think this one could. I really like the fit option and simplicity.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Looking at the pattern, there doesn't seem to be a waist as such so no need to adjust for neck waist length?

    ReplyDelete
  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks Rhonda, this is very helpful! I can't wait to get this one of a kind pattern :)
    Hugs,
    Tany

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hope it arrives soon. Let me know when it does arrive.

      Delete
  6. I ordered the pattern and some fabric for it a couple of days ago. My measurements are very similar to Robyn's, so I'm glad to read that it should fit. At 5'1" I will certainly shorten it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You will need to shorten it quite a bit. The designer of the pattern is quite petite too. I'll see if I can get her to chime in on the discussion of the petite figure.

      Delete
  7. I am the designer so I have made this dress a few times. I am 5'0" and always have to chop off quite a bit, 5" minimum before I cut it out. I like my dresses to hit just below the knee. The pattern is designed for an average height. However, be aware of 3 very important things regarding length that are unique to bias-cut dresses. 1. It will hang longer or shorter depending on your fabric, so shorten the paper pattern if it is too long, but don't expect the finished length to be the same as the paper. 2. Bias cut dresses get shorter when you get wider, so when you sit down, they shorten. 3. The length of the finished dress is partly due to the weight of the fabric. If you are removing quite a bit (4" or more) then mark your desired finished length and then cut ABOVE your mark. Don't be like me and have to sew back on, what you just cut off because the dress "jumped" up after removing it. I only had to make that mistake one time. (smile)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much Julianne! Since there are a number of very petite ladies making the dress, I know that your input is very appreciated :)

      Delete
  8. Thank you Julianne and Rhonda! I plan to make my final version in silk, but I am searching my stash for suitable muslin material for checking the shoulder fit. Julianne, you mention in your book that cotton voile can work, correct? I also have handkerchief linen. Sorry for all my questions. This is the final one, and thanks!! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cotton voile would work. It's very light weight, rather airy actually. just remember, a voile is going to have a different drape than that of a silk, but it will give you an idea of the fit. Good Luck! Let me know how your adventure works out.

      Delete
  9. About adding extra room in the bust - wouldn't I be better off adding some to the yoke piece? If I add it to the long triangle, as you've shown in the middle drawing of the three above, won't I end up with a right armhole which is also that many inches bigger?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Emily, I sent your question to Julianne, the designer of the pattern, as I would like for her to address your question. she's great about getting back to me so I'm sure we'll hear from her soon.

      Delete
    2. Emily, you are correct that adding extra room at the bust is best done on the front yoke piece.

      Delete