Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Making It Fit

I've always thought that the bust measurement was the be-all, end-all in measurements for a top or cardigan. Bust, waist and hip measurements are the 3 measurements that are listed on the pattern envelope for a sewing pattern. For a crochet or knit garment, the bust measurement is the one listed in the sizing area. So . . . what other measurements could there be? And how do they play into the construction of a garment?

Something called the Cross-Back or Shoulder-to-Shoulder measurement has turned out to be important for me. I am smaller than the "standard" measurement for the Cross-Back for my bust size, so a garment made exactly to the pattern will almost always be too wide at the neck area and hang off my shoulders. I have several tops that I constantly tug at to pull them back up onto my shoulders.

Bust, waist, hips and cross-back measurements are circumference measurements or measurements around the body.

Length measurements are also important for a good fit or a pleasing look. Back Waist Length is the distance between the little bump at the base of your neck to your natural waistline. I am of average height, so I don't usually have to make adjustments in the length area, but if you are taller or shorter, your garment will either be too long or too short.

Length is a matter of design or personal preference. Standard length for a top or cardigan is 5" below the natural waistline, while the standard length for a tunic is 9". I prefer my tops to be a little longer than the 5" as my midriff area is not as . . . enticing as it once was.

Next, I'll talk about getting all those measurements down.

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