Thursday, October 25, 2012

sewing for the body I have

When I was on my third pregnancy, I frequented a wonderful fabric shop in Charlottesville, VA (Le Fabriques).  The staff there are just wonderful and they became my friends.  (this just tells you how often I was there.)  When I was several months along, one of my friends/employees was just amazed at my size and we were joking around about it.  See, I am on the petite end and my belly was quite large.  Quietly, she told me, "I just don't know how all that skin can go back."  I laughed and said that I was not sure that was possible either.

me, only 7 months along ... 3 more to go (and no pictures)

Now, that baby girl is 19 months old and no, my belly is not the same.  I have lost the weight most everywhere else.  But I still have a belly.  An awkwardly wrinkled belly.  I know... I am being quite graphic here.  But this blog post is not for the feint of heart.  We must be big girls today. 

As I stated on an earlier post, I am ready to do some sewing for me.  But that means I need to altering the pattern for me.  That means I have to take the "normal" shaped pattern and make it shaped to fit my body.  My body with the left over belly.  Here is the point where I must be honest with myself.  It has been 19 months since giving birth and I don't know how much more of that belly, if any, is going to disappear. 

And what should I do?  Wait a few more months before sewing for me?  No.  I am going to be a clearheaded woman and make myself clothes that fit the body I have now.

First, this involved measuring.  I followed Gertie's instructions in her book and took some measurements to see what size would best fit me.  Surprise, surprise, my hip size places me 2 sizes smaller than my waist size.  So, there are a few adjustments need for the pattern. 

I traced the pattern and made my adjustments.  Then I did a pin fit of pattern on my body.  This is when you mark your seam allowances and pin as if it is sewn.  Then you hold the pattern (as it is half of your garment) against your body as if you are wearing it and see if the center lines match your center.  If it doesn't match, you make more adjustments.

When I got what looked like a good pattern, I cut this awesome fabric.

I then sewed all the darts and basted the side seems to check the fit.

It was too tight.

I debated on whether to just have smaller seam allowances.  But then just decided to cut new back pieces that were a size larger.  I had extra fabric and figured I will just make pants for the baby girl out of my 'wasted' fabric.

Again, I basted side seems.  This time it was a tiny bit tight.

So, I let it out a tiny bit just in the places it was needed.

Next, I do the zipper.  I will keep you all posted.

And for the rest of you, I hope you all are brave and sewing for the body you have, not the one you wished you had. 

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