Ah, blogging in the Winter! I diligently photographed this whole draftalong adventure as I went along to find that the poor light quality and short days got the better of me. It’s not just photos either, I’ve been sewing in black too and I’m close to making a resolution about sewing summer clothes in the winter and leaving the dark winter clothes until the light is fit to see what you’re doing. There are upsides however for the both of us. Conditions have forced me to teach myself the wonders of Adobe Illustrator (and wondrous this software is!) so you have clear and detailed diagrams to see you through instead of images.
So getting back to the program, in the last draftalong post we created a skirt block and played with some dart values. Today we get to do the really fun part and transform the shape of our skirt to add flare and make an A-line skirt pattern. Before we get to that though, I wanted to add something that I left out of the last post, and that is to label your pattern pieces as you go along. Label what each piece is, where it is from and what you changed, the size, and the centre front (CF) and back (CB). This is important for when you go back to your revisions so you know exactly what piece is what. Now you should have two pattern pieces that look like this:
Next we want to trace out our pattern pieces on to a fresh piece of paper, so lay some paper down on top of your pattern pieces and trace the parts of the pattern indicated in blue below:
Once traced, take an awl (or a pin or sharp pencil) and place it at the tip of the dart you’ve just half traced. Then turn your top sheet of paper pivoting on your awl or pin until the traced dart leg lays over the top of the other dart leg on the layer below. Then trace off the next section as shown in blue below (don’t forget to trace you’re middle dart, this one’s here to stay):
Place your awl or pin at the tip of the third dart (you don’t pivot out the middle dart) and pivot it out as you did the first. Trace off the rest of your pattern and join the gaps in the hem and hipline:
Measure the extra width you have added to the hem with each dart and average it out. Halve this number and add that to the side of the skirt at the hem, drawing a line up to the hip line. This extra wedge of pattern evens out the flare you’ve added over the skirt to make the shape more balanced.
You are now finished with the back of the skirt, repeat these steps to pivot out the darts at the front and you will have a pattern for an A-line skirt! If you want to stop here just add your seam allowance, a grainline that runs parallel to the CB, a fold line on the CF and a hem. We’ll go through the drafting of a waistband at the end so you can finish your skirt.
Next week we can split up our pattern pieces into six gores.
Any questions? Ask me anything in the comments and I’ll see what I can do to answer them. If I’ve sped over a topic too quickly I can do an amendment post covering it in more detail. Until next time…….