In my first post, I lamented the fact that my blazer didn’t fit.  In addition to making a toile or muslin to fit the garment, I did learn a couple of other things:

1.  You need to take good measurements and compare them to the pattern – for instance, the shoulder extended a bit farther than I was comfortable with, which was just part of the pattern design.  Second, the pattern specified a 1″ shoulder pad.  On a 5’4″ frame, that could be a bit overwhelming when combined with the shoulder extension – it looked a little like a football outfit to me.  You should be armed with as many measurements as possible, including shoulder, full bust, high bust, bust point, back neck to waist and so on.  Compare these to the paper pattern as part of your decision about whether it’s the right pattern in the first place.

2.  You need to know what you want in a garment in terms of fit – how much height in the shoulder pad, how much extension in the shoulder, how long the garment should be.  What I should have done was look to a few ready-to-wear garments I have, and take some measurements from them to determine what I feel suits my eye.  Another good idea is to go shopping and look at the type of blazers that look best on you – are they a princess seam or just a waistline dart?  If a princess seam, does it go through the shoulder, or curve over to the armscythe?  How many buttons down the front of the blazer?  How long is the blazer?  What’s the shoulder length?  All of these elements then become the things you look for in a pattern.

3. You should know what suits you.  Study your body shape and investigate the best silhouettes. The shapeliness of the blazer and the 2-button stance were ok for my short & busty figure, but the shoulder made the top of the jacket a bit too big for me.  There are a lot of resources on the web and many great books written on developing your style, and understanding what clothes look best on your shape.  It’s well worth investigating (more on this in a future post).

Much as it’s painful, I’ll keep posting my failures, in the hopes that others can learn from them.  But along the way, there will also be some successes to celebrate as I continue learn from my mistakes, but more importantly from other people.

Happy sewing!