I muslined some Lekala patterns! It’s ironic that I feel I have to muslin custom sized patterns, but that’s what happen when you fudge numbers *and* gain weight all at once. Oops …
First up is the Three-seam Skirt, Pattern #5088. Before I made this muslin, I drafted my own pencil skirt pattern from measurements, then graded in ease. It was more of an exercise in drafting and grading than anything else, but I’ve designed so many pencil skirts that a custom block would allow me to finally make and wear my own designs!
Here’s a comparison of my handiwork versus Lekala’s:
The facing on top is the one I traced off my self-drafted skirt, with no seam allowance included. The one below it is the facing I traced off the Lekala skirt, with 1″ seam allowance added. I think I’ll go back and cut off the SA, since it’s actually easier to trace pattern pieces without seam allowance. As you can see, though, the facings are virtually identical in size and shape.
The skirt fronts also match up, though my self drafted version is a bit wider through the hip and hem (the bottom layer peeking out at the side). The waistlines are roughly the same measurement, though the darts are not in the same place. So if Lekala’s patterns are drafted to professional standards, I did a pretty darned good job of drafting my version. Go me!
I didn’t compare Blouse Pattern #5638 to my own TNT knit top pattern, though maybe I will next time. Cutting out the pieces I noticed that the front was narrower than the back, and that the sleeves were super narrow through the bicep (compared to my extra-full arms). I also felt that 5638 was too short. So I added 1″ of width at the CF and 2″ of length at the bottom of both front and back pieces. For the sleeve, I widened the bicep by about 2″ and narrowed the wrist by about the same, as well as lengthened it by 3″.
And yet, I completely overlooked how tiny the neck hole is on this shirt. Hilarious! I managed to squeeze it over my head and my hair, but decided to increase it by 1″ at each shoulder seam. I also dropped the CB by about 5/8″.
Put it all together, and what do you get?
The skirt fits PERFECTLY. Even better than the one I drafted, which itself fit pretty darned well. The Lekala skirt is a little more snug than my version (not pictured), but that makes me feel sexy, as my size and shape make fitted clothing an impossible luxury. The top, however, fits like crap. I’ll try it again, without modifying the bodice, but the sleeves definitely won’t fit me as-is. It’s baggy above my bust, toward the shoulders; the front needs more length to go over my chest; and the front hem is too wide (my fault). The whole shebang is still way too short, despite my adding 2″.
I’m definitely bummed about the poor, poor fit of 5638, but beyond thrilled with the fit of 5088 — which is the more important pattern, since I already have a TNT knit top pattern that fits me perfectly.
And just in case you’re not a classic rock fan, today’s title is a reference to the song by Foreigner. Enjoy!