Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Notes on a Pattern - New Look 6322

A few weeks ago, I decided to pair New Look 6322 with these beautiful Multi-Color Watercolor Cotton Sateen  and Mint Mechanical Stretch Polyester Crepe De Chine (lining) from Mood Fabrics.  This summer I decided to use several bold fabrications to update my wardrobe.  My handy color fan helped me select the best colors for my skin tone.  I hadn't noticed this pattern until May of this year.  But its been around since last year.  My favorite view is view B with sleeves.  Of course, I knew I'd need to make at least my usual pattern adjustments:  FBA, broad shoulder, and sway back.  These changes are pretty standard for me.

Looking at the drawings and the front bodice pattern, I noticed that the pleating at the waist was a combination of pleats and darts.    My challenge was to successfully incorporate the excess fabric from the resulting FBA without adding too much bulk in the bust area.   The solution; add another dart and to extend the lines of the pleats to reduce any pooling below the bust.

The second challenge was to reduce or eliminate any gaping at the neckline.  This mostly happens when I sit in some dress styles.  In this case, the front of the dress gaps a bit.  Andrea (Sew It Fit) and I were talking about future projects and making the appropriate adjustments when I mentioned this issue.  She suggested that I make a small tuck in the neckline just above the bust to fix the problem.

For the back bodice, two adjustments were done.  The broad shoulder adjustment resulted in a small shoulder dart plus a deeper waist dart.   That is a pretty easy adjustment.  The sway back tuck eliminated the pooling fabric at my lower back.  Also, pretty easy to do.

After these fit resolutions were made, I noticed the shoulder seam does not fall on the ball of my shoulder.  It's about 1/2 beyond it.  Keep in mind, this amount plus the seam allowance. Next, the back sleeve has some fabric pooling near the shoulder blade.  I trimmed away the excess.  Finally, the center front and back extends 1/4" beyond the center of my body.  These areas were also trimmed as needed.

I starting the adjustment process using size 16.  I think don't my size selection caused the additional changes in the shoulder and sleeve, as I have experienced these issues before using size 14.  Using the size 16 does cause me to have large seam allowances along the side of the entire garment.  Sometimes resulting in down sizing to  14 or 12 in other areas.    At this point, I think I will go back to starting with size 14 just to see how that works.

On the skirt of the dress:  I lengthen it by 2" in the front and up to 2.50" on the back to level the hem where the sway back adjustment occurred.

Final observation:  Many of my "custom made" dresses slide off the hanger due to the wide neckline?  Especially, those made using New Look patterns.  It's not my imagination.  On the model, the neckline sits far away from the base of her neck.  This is another area that I will attempt to correct in future garments.

That's all for now!

Happy Sewing,


  1. Beautiful fabric, I can't wait to see your final dress! I often have the same issues with gaping necklines and shoulder seams that don't fall at the shoulder. Where did you get the color fan? That looks very handy.

  2. Thanks, Ann. The fan was part of my color analysis that I got during the Palmer/Pletsch workshop in 2012. Evelyn Harms did my analysis. But you should be able to find someone near you who does color analysis and makeup

  3. Oh this, is going to be so cute, I have this pattern and I am hoping to sew some soon.

  4. The fabric is beautiful. Love those colors. I know you will make a gorgeous dress.



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