Sisterhood of the Muslin Pants

Our fitting group had its first fitting session to make a basic muslin pant shell.  The room was a mass of muslin and pins as our group had grown slightly in size.  It was wonderful to see the enthusiasm but I knew it was going to be a long night.

The homework was to have each person cut out and baste their pant sloper for their first fitting.  I gave them the instructions, but I think I should have studied them before passing them on.

I have to say that the instructions were a little misleading because it assumed that you used one of the Silhouette patterns which lists its sizes according to the body measurement plus wearing ease, and not just the body measurement as all other pattern companies do.  The instructions asked you to measure your hip while you were in a sitting position so you could get the measurement as you (and the tape measure) spread out.  Then you were to purchase the pattern according to the spread out measurement.  So some individuals bought other commercial patterns according to this instruction and showed up with a much larger sloper than they needed.  Guess I’ll have to make a little footnote on the instruction sheet.

We also had people that didn’t quite follow the instructions (myself included).  So it made fitting a little more complex than it needed to be.

Our fitting expert did a fantastic job in reading all the wrinkles and folds to determine what changes needed to be made.  It was interesting to see how these muslin forms could be manipulated to fit our bodies.  She asked that if there were many changes to make another muslin shell and we would fine-tune it at our next meeting.

Hmmm…taking the time to cut out a muslin shell, fit it, and then make another muslin is very time consuming.  But this is our first attempt at making a fitting sloper using the Peggy Sager method.  We have much to learn as our expert did all the work.  We need to be able to do the same thing for each other.  Otherwise, we will have one person who will be worn out and will never have time to have her own fittings tended to.

Once we grasp the concepts of fitting and understand why something doesn’t hang right or has funny wrinkles or folds, then our fittings will go much smoother (maybe).  We also need to try a few other techniques so we will have a basis of comparison to determine which is more accurate and gives the best fit.

If the Peggy Sager method works best, then all the time and effort will be worth it.  If other methods give the same or better results, but are less time consuming then we will have to side with the ones that take less time, right?   But I am in no position to decide for someone else.  Deciding which is best probably depends on the individual and their specific needs and how the individual perceives the experience.

Next month we do some final tweaking, but will we actually be at the point where we can make some pants?  Only time will tell!

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