Week 31: Bodice Sloper (front)

It seems that drafting and doing a muslin for the bodice sloper was way too ambitious for a single week, haha. It might have been all right if I hadn’t run into issues with drafting, but of course I did, that’s what always happens with my measurements and drafting things.

I worked through the first sloper (using Suzy Furrer’s bodice sloper Craftsy class) and started running into problems as soon as I had to attach the side length to where it was supposed to hit the underarm. The side length I measured was way too long to hit the guide. I re-measured and reduced the length a bit, and then based on some comments I reduced it even more, but then when I got to the armhole (whose size is affected by the side length), the armhole was many inches too small.  I double-checked all my measurements, and they were fine.

A few days later when I’d recovered enough to think about drafting again, I started looking at pattern drafting software – the computer and I are good, old friends, and I almost always work better digitally. First I looked specifically at pattern drafting software, all of which are kind of expensive, but I figured if it will save me time and heartache, then it could be worth it. I finally downloaded the demo of Wild Ginger’s Pattern Master Boutique, which looks like excellent software, but wasn’t quite what I wanted. The pattern editor, which was closer to what I was looking for, was not intuitive to me. Finally I went to Inkscape, which I’ve looked at before for other drawing purposes but hadn’t been back to in awhile. I was pretty excited by just the grid options, which I’m pretty sure makes me a huge nerd.

inkscape grid
Doesn’t look like much but I literally squealed.
Basically you can set up multiple grids with different colors and different scales. I have two grids here, one is set up as a one-inch grid and the other is a 1/8th inch grid. Plus because you can snap to the grid, it makes a lot of calculations really easy. It was still a learning curve, but it was more similar to other art programs I’ve used, so it felt more intuitive.

Anyway, after another three hours of digital drafting this time, I wound up with a front bodice sloper that has exactly the same problems as my hand-drawn one. I was able to make a few alterations that helped a bit (I raised the shoulder point since I have pretty square shoulders, which gave me an extra inch or so) but I’m still not sure about it. If I can figure out how to line the pages up when I print it, I might try to muslin it anyway and make my alterations from there (I mean after I finish the back draft, I guess…) I’m also tempted to buy a fitting pattern and just fit something that is already pre-drafted.

inkscape front sloper
Turned the grid off for this one so it’s easier to see the lines.
Goals for next week:

I’m still not really sure what I want to do with the sloper so I think it’s on hold this week. In the meantime, my mending like is starting to pile up and I want to knock some of that out, so I think the major goal for this week will be that. 

The heat wave this past week meant that knitting was the last thing I was interested in doing – if it’s cooler this week, I’d like to actually work on those socks!


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