I hope you enjoyed the skirt series and the knit t-shirt series are ready to move on to something a little bit more challenging. The next series will cover shirts. We're going to draft a basic bodice from measurements and then move into how to adjust it for different types of shirts and blouses. So, we'll go from a very basic t-shirt to a button-down blouse perfect for jeans or paired with the skirt you made. In between the drafting and construction of our shirts, I'll show you how to alter the key problem areas to ensure a perfect fit. We'll also be looking at how to construct the blouse to ensure it is well made.
Drafting the Front Bodice From Measurements
Now it's time to take those measurements and draft a basic bodice. Just like any shirt pattern you buy, we'll be making a front and back bodice. Printable version of the measurement sheet.
1. Make vertical line length from the back neck to waist + ½” (Label A to B)
2. Mark across the top half of your shoulder measurement (Label C)
3. Divide your neck measurement by 4 and mark from the corner (Label D) Measure down same measurement + ¼” (Label E) Create neckline from D to E
4. Draw line from B to C
5. Measure up from B along the diagonal line your “Shoulder to CF Waist” measurement. Make a mark.
6. Create your shoulder line (Label F)
7. Measure down from F your bust point (nip) (Label G)
8. Make a vertical line from the bust point down and square off at the bottom to CF (center front)
9. Create dart by subtracting your high bust from your full bust: Measure down 2” from dart line and then measure out the difference listed below.
1” - ⅝”
2” - 1 ¼”
3” - 1 ⅝”
4” - 2 ¼”
5” - 2 ⅝”
10. Create a second dart line making sure it measures the same in length as the first line. Draw a line slightly at an angle from the second dart leg.
Measure out your quarter waist measurement plus ¼” from B towards the side seam. Make a line…then use your tracing wheel to go over the dart area. Mark your dart. (Label your side seam H)
11. Measure down 5” from CF neck and measure out half your FRONT bust measurement plus ¼” for ease, Make a dot.
12. Draw a vertical line at this point. (this is just guideline)
13. From “H” measure up to where you meet your guideline using your armscye to waist measurement (Label I)
14. Draw a horizontal line at this point to the CF
15. From the CF measure out along that line we just created your quarter HIGH bust measurement.
16. Draw in your armscye curve (If you have a full bust you may have a deeper curve than someone with a smaller bust)
Add Seam Allowance
Add ⅝” seam allowance to your side seam, hem, and shoulder.
Do the following math for the Back Bodice
Example: My under bust is 32” ÷ 4 = 8” (I will use the 8” as my quarter measurement)
1. Under Bust ÷ 4 = ________ (we are using the final quarter measurement)
2. Full Bust ÷ 4 = _________ (we are using the final quarter measurement)
Place elastic around your waist before taking the following:
3. Waist ÷ 4 = _________ (we are using the final quarter measurement)
4. Full Back Length: Shoulder to Elastic at Waist: _______ (measure from high shoulder point, which is at the shoulder closest to your neck)
5. Center Back Length: ________ (measure from the center back to the elastic)
6. Underarm Length: _________ (measure 1” below your underarm to your elastic at waist)
7. Shoulder Length: _______
Drafting the Back Bodice From Measurements
1. Make vertical line length of back nape to waist + ½” (Label J to K)
2. Mark across the top ½ of your shoulder measurement (Label L)
3. Divide your neck measurement by 4 minus ¼” and mark from the corner (Label M) Measure down ⅜” (Label N) Create neckline from M to N
4. Divide your armscye depth by 4 and then minus ½” now from M measure down that amount and make a horizontal line.
5. Draw a line from K to L
6. Draw in your shoulder line (Label O)
7. Measure down 6” from your neckline “N” and then measure across ½ of your BACK bust measurement make a dot and create a vertical line (this is a guideline)
8. At K measure across your quarter waist plus 1 ¼” from CB (center back) towards your side seam.
9. At that line measure up your armscye to waist measurement until you meet your guideline. Make a guideline from this point towards your CB. Measure from your CB towards your side seam a quarter of your HIGH bust.
10. Draw in your armscye curve.
11. From the center of your shoulder make a vertical line to the waistline.
12. From that vertical line measure out towards CB ½” and make a vertical line that meets your quarter half bust guideline. From that line measure out another ½” and then join dart legs.
Add Seam Allowance
Add ⅝” seam allowance to your side seam, hem and shoulder and center back.
Lay your front bodice shoulder over your back bodice shoulder. If your back bodice shoulder is longer you will need to adjust before cutting out.
Making a Muslin
Take your pattern pieces and use them to make a test muslin. Make any adjustments you need to for a better fit.
Join the Private Facebook Group
I'm always happy to answer questions left in the comment section but did you know Let's Learn To Sew has a Facebook group? The Facebook group is a private group where you can ask questions and share what you're working on. It's also an easy way to share pictures of your project while you're working on it and when it's complete. Hop on over and join today!