The bad news? While I could alter the brown poly-cotton (aka muslin) to fit—taking it in a little here, and out a little there...It still doesn't really work. Taking it in at the bust/top made the armholes too tight, and even cutting them larger (thankfully one can make some things larger!)I was still left with a sleeve that was too tight (for comfort). Letting out a smidge (on each seam—there are 6!) gave me more than enough ease to fit.
But--nothing could be done with the length of bodice--too short! (I tend to be long waisted) —or the opening for the neckline (too wide)--the top felt like it was falling off! Or the sleeve—to tight.
A too tight sleeve, with a too short bodice was a major problem—the tight sleeve would have caused the already too short bodice to ride up if I lifted my arms (as I might do when dancing) and leave a huge unsightly gap at the waist—Ugh! But—here is the good news! All of these fitting problems are fixable problems! And while I am disappointed that the brown top isn't really wearable--it was worth it to learn all i did about the fitting of this pattern.
I am now ready to cut the bodice in good fabric, making the neckline a little smaller--(which means adding more fabric!) and bodice longer (more fabric there too) and the sleeves a bit wider(another place where more fabric will fix the fit.
But I got the length of the sleeve right the first time--(I have short arms and sleeves are always too long.) I can add a bit too, to each edge, and have full seam allowance-and still make the top a bit fuller below the bust--(it still pretty snug fitting—but then, that is the style.)
The pattern is really very simple—and now that I have sewn it up once, ripped it apart and sewn it up again—I know all the detail areas to watch out for. I will likely make the bodice too long as I cut it again—adding 3 inches of extra length-- when 2 inches are probable all I need. It's always easy to trim it shorter. And I won't alter the arm holes till I have bodice constructed—again its easier to trim—and a better plan than having too big an opening—a good french curve and lots of years of experience give me the confidence to know I can make this alterations on a semi constructed garment.
The skirt will be easier—I've made a few skirts recently—and I know my size and the adjustments I need to make there better. For 1—about 6 inches shorter than the pattern suggests!--though I will hedge my bets and only make it 4 inches shorter—better to have to trim off an extra inch than to be left too short! I bought 6 yards of the fabric—and I really only need about 4.5 for dress—so I have plenty of fabric and adding a few inches of length to the bodice won't be an issue. (Even if I hadn't bought extra—I'd have the extra from the shorter skirt to add to a longer bodice!)
Patterns are made for amazons—Tall, long legged women with short torso—and not for long waisted short legged women like me! Not to mention, sizing is totally different--(and being slightly smaller in the bust—is another standard alteration for me--but so much easier to accomplish—I feel for woman who are large busted!)
A little work got done on the sock--a full pattern repeat -Which sounds like a lot—but is in reality, a scant 8 rows (not quite an inch!) The leg is near the half way point--Its currently 4 inches. I usually start the heel around 7 inches—for a total length of 9 or so inches. So its more than half of the leg in the round—but not quite half if you include the heel.
Nothing got done on the diamond vest—I took a nap instead. I do feel better (I forgot to take medication last night to sleep—and it didn't matter) but I still am achy and tired. Better to baby myself a bit.