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Achieve the Perfect Fit Every Time

Apr 9, 2008
Aside from the originality of the design and its artistic merit, successful costume designing depends on perfect fit.

Perfect Fit Depends On Accurate Measures.

In transferring the size and shape of the three dimensions of the human figure to the flat planes of the pattern and thence to the draping of the fabric, certain basic measurements have to be taken in every case - and this is notwithstanding the loose or tight fit of the finished creation. In ready made patterns the measurements are the ideal or average proportions for each size listed.

However Figures With Perfect Proportions Are Very Rare.

For this reason - if you are going to be a successful designer - you will have to learn how to take accurate measurements and how to translate them into the finished product - your work of art.

Measuring For Ready-Made Patterns

To order the proper size in ready made patterns the measurements required are a great deal simpler, however, during the construction of the garment a number of alterations may have to be made. On the market today there are basic patterns which can be adjusted to the individuals special figure problems and which can be used as a basic guide for all pattern alterations required. These are usually made of non-woven material, firm and inelastic, so that they can be pinned or sewn, and fitted and refitted.

How To Measure For A Commercial Pattern

Bust - over the fullest part of the bust and completely around figure keeping tape measure straight across the back. Take this measure while chest is expanded.

Waist - snug but not tight - around the natural waistline.

Waist length - from nape of neck to natural waistline.

Hips - around the fullest part of the hips.

Recently not only the ready-to-wear designers, but the pattern makers as well, have recognized the fact that the human shape differs not only in its circumference but also in the lengths of corresponding parts - such as, for example, the waistlength. Patterns are designed today not only in misses' and women's sizes but also in half sizes, petite, and junior sizes. In the last three the waistlength is shorter than average. It helps therefore to keep this measurement in mind when selecting your pattern - particularly that certain styles are designed to especially flatter these figures.

Ready To Wear

Standard sizes in patterns differ from the standard sizes for ready to wear - generally, ready to wear is slightly larger for the size marked than the pattern. Also, proportionate sizes differ somewhat between various wholesale houses as the basic pattern is made to fit a living model and the rest of the sizes are graded therefrom.

The Basic Sheath

The basic sheath is the simplest style possible to fit the figure accurately yet not so snugly as to create wrinkles and bulges. When this sheath is made for pattern purposes it is best to use some firm non-woven material such as Pellon to provide ease for fitting and altering and at the same time to prevent the shapes of various parts from stretching out of proportion. In the past, muslin was the chief material used for this purpose - but today there are many other materials which surpass this.

Using the above guidelines, you should get a perfect fit every time.
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