Added Sep 15, 2009
Ithaca, New York...
I recently bought a pattern from McCalls that promised detailed instructions for how to do common alterations (not this pattern, but another one that I will post later when I have a chance to take pics). Lots of little lights went off in my head after reading through these directions, and I figured out some of the reasons I was having trouble with the Ute I made earlier this summer — namely, that I needed a full bust alteration! The FBA sounds like something I should do (I have a full bust, after all) but somehow I always thought that if I cut a smaller size and did a FBA that I would end up with a too small waist. My bust/waist/hip measurements are all pretty dead on for a Burda size 44, and so a size 40 waist would indeed be bad. But after reading the FBA descriptions, I realized that 1) the FBA would help me get a better fit in the shoulder/neck area, not just the bust, and that 2) adding width in the waist is much easier than messing with the neckline, and some FBA techniques add width in the waist anyway.
So, sorry to be long winded for those of you who already knew this, but I thought someone else might benefit from my new FBA insight. For this version of the Ute, I cut a 40 (based on my high bust measurement of 36), and added about 3 inches to the bust and 2 to the waist. The fit is still not perfect I would say, but it is much better (It’s still a little bit gappy at the buttons, but I think that might be more due to the flimsiness of the chiffon than the fit). Armed with my new FBA confidence, I might take on a blazer sometime soon!
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