Friday, October 30, 2020

Notes on Mentorship- Developing an idea into a garment- Raised neckline with radiating darts

Tunic drawing with raised neckline and radiating neckline darts

The second design idea that I wanted to try working from sketch to garment is what I am calling Raised Neckline with Radiating Darts.

1.   Just a quick recap of how I got here.

  •   Started with a well fitting master pattern of my tunic.
  •    Used a sketch done in Procreate on my iPad to create design I really liked.

For this raised neckline tunic I had to break it down into 2 major steps to start with. First step is to develop the raised neckline and then the second step is rotating the bust darts to the neckline.

Luckily, several weeks ago I took an online zoom class with Sarah Veblen that was about raised necklines where she showed many examples and then walked the group through the pattern work. With this fresh in my mind, and the recording to refer back to, I started my pattern work.

Because I am working on neckline, I am just working off a partial pattern front and back that goes to just below the bust darts.

I traced off a cleaned cropped version of my front and back master tunic and then worked on the steps to raise the neckline.

Version 1:

·        Front and Back- I moved the neckline in at the shoulder by a 1/2inch

·        Picked a part along the shoulder where I wanted the ‘swoop’ up to start and drew a curved line.

·        Back only- rotated the shoulder dart to the neckline and extended.

·        Trued up the dart as a straight dart

I achieved some height and but not quite what I wanted. Still too wide.

First try... way too wide!

Version 2:

·        Front and back- Moved the neckline in another inch closer to the neck and used the same swoop curve.

This version came closer, I opened the back neck darts and re-pinned to give a better shape. Added shaping at the center back. Added fabric to the front with pins and then drew/pinned where I thought the finished edge should be.

Version two- messy but getting better

so many pins!

Transferred all those changes to version 3

Version 3:

·        OMG- in LOVE with this neckline.

·        Loved it so much that I transferred it to a clean full pattern to be used in the future.

Amazing look and love the shape BUT not what I need to get to the final design that I want.

LOVE version three!! But... not the shape needed for this project.

Version 4:

·        Used the height and shape of version 3 for the back neck and shoulder area. Re-shaped the front neckline into a soft V

Super happy with this raised neckline and front soft V-neck shape.

Pic 14

Oh dear... ignore the face! LOL!! This version is perfect shape that I was going for!

With step one of the project done I moved onto designing how I wanted to design and transfer the parallel bust darts into radiating ‘darts’ at the neckline. Not all of the style lines that I have drawn will actually be darts. Some of them will just be sewn as very narrow pin tucks.

Here is version four with the design lines for the radiating neckline darts drawn on. I made a slight change from the original sketch and don't have a center front straight line. It just did not go so I eliminated it and added these two curved lines that are much nicer!

The first thing I did at this step was to draw in where I wanted the ‘darts’ to be. I used a Frixion heat erase pen in this step so that I could re-do as many times as I wanted. I ended up with these curved lines that come out from the neckline in regular intervals. Interestingly enough they are all the exact same length and drawn with the same curve of a French curve.

With these drawn on the Version 4 mock-up I then worked on the flat pattern.

I started by tracing a clean version of the pattern. Still not going to full tunic length but going to just about or above my waist. This would let me evaluate the overall fit with the darts better.

The first thing I did was use the French curve to draw the design lines on.

Front pattern with CF on fold. you can see the swoop at the shoulder creating the raised neckline. The 5 lines are drawn evenly at every 2.5 inches along the neckline. You can also see the parallel bust darts that need to be closed and transferred into the neckline.

With those drawn on I had to think about how I wanted the parallel bust darts to be transferred. Considerations into which design line and how much into each design line and how.

The new front pattern with the darts now transferred to the neckline.

Back pattern- you can see the upper neck dart and shaping at the CB raised neckline.
After thinking a bit about it and talking with my mentor, Sarah, I decided to start with one to one transfers into the 2 closest radiating darts. The upper bust dart went into design line number 3 fully and the lower bust dart went into design line number 2. However, line number 2 went past the full bust point. My decision here was to transfer the dart at the bust point and then when sewing the dart continue past the point as a pin tuck to the end of the line.

Mock-up made with reverse pin tucks and darts sewn in. There are pins in the back neckline to refine the height of the finished look.

Of course to make all of this more difficult is that these are curved darts. So pretty but harder to true up!

All the other design lines would be sewn as very narrow reverse pin tucks.

I did my best to true up the neck line and moved forward with my first version of the radiating darts raised neckline.

Version 5:

·        I was quite pleased with this mock-up

·        Small changes made to the height/shape of the back neckline

·        Small changes to the shape of the front neckline

To make these changes I actually drew on the finished seams with a red marker and then unpicked all the seams and darts ironed it out. Then laid it out and put the pattern on top, lined it all up and drew the changes onto the pattern.

Here is the mock up version 5 on me. It looks quite nice!

To true the neckline darts into the smooth curved soft V, I very carefully walked the curved darts and pinned at the neckline. With this done I was able to use my fashion ruler to create a smooth curve and add seam allowance to the best of my abilities. It looks correct….

Next step will be to make one more mock up and check the overall fit and final neckline shape.

Hopefully after that mockup I can move into fashion fabric. I have a nice green 100% cotton textured fabric that has a nice crisp body. Should hold up the neckline and show off the radiating ‘darts’’ quite well.

Happy Sewing!!

This picture of Princess Victoria sums up how I feel about everything in the real world right now!! Chicago Coronavirus rates skyrocketing, seems to be happening everywhere.

Please stay safe everyone!!


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