Uniquely You dress form: steps 5 and 6 (upper back)

Hi again friends. Sorry this post is quite a bit later than originally anticipated, but here it is!

And since you are all probably sick of (or will soon be) seeing these posts covered in pictures in taupe and beige and neutral colors, here is something a little more colorful to start.

steps 6 and 7

Where we left off last time I had just about finished fitting the bust. This has been the trickiest part so far (you can see my previous posts on steps 1 and 2 here, and steps 3 and 4 here).

Step 5: Clip the seams along the side front seams perpendicular to the stitching line at 2 inch intervals. Don’t clip all the way to the stitching, just enough to allow the fabric to open up some and let the seam curve naturally. The point of this is to keep the extra fabric in the seam allowance from pulling on the seam and changing the shape of the dress form.

Next, it’s dart time again! Took me a couple tries to get this one right.

First, put on the cover. Side seams are still pinned. Mark the crease under your breasts and the highest spot in between.

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I was worried that this dart would take in too much fabric and change the shape of the bust fitting, but my worries were unfounded. I tried putting the dart in an inch lower than the instructions say, but that was a bad idea. I ripped it out and did it the right way.

Transfer the chalk markings to the inside of the cover. Fold from one mark to another. My fold ran slightly “uphill” and then “downhill” again. You can see how the fold runs across the grain of the fabric. This is fine. Sew your dart as normal and it will turn out well.

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I drew a line, and sewed along it to make the dart. Here it is sewed, on me.

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“If the armhole stands away from the body, fit with a dart toward the bust point…”

My armhole was fine so I skipped this.

Step 6: Upper back and shoulders (again)

Put the cover back on. Side seams are still only pinned together. The instructions say to take in or release side back seams to follow the contour of the back exactly. Only do this ABOVE your natural waist. So, just like I did for the area above the bust in my last post, I ripped out the side seams and re pinned them to exactly fit the contour of my back. Rather, my mom re pinned them since I couldn’t really reach. The chalk lines in this picture mark where the cover went from snug to loosely fitting. I ripped the seam using these marks as outer boundaries.

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Then I transferred pins and sewed the seams.

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Next, the instructions recommend making some darts from the armhole pointing toward the spine if the armhole stands away from your body. I didn’t have this problem, so no darts here.

The instructions also say to re check and adjust the seams as much as needed to get a smooth fit in the upper back. I did have to do this. Make sure the seams run relatively perpendicular to the floor.

I know it doesn’t look like much of a change, but taking in the back seams made a huge difference in the fit. Make sure you get this right.

Last part of step 6 is to re-fit the shoulder seams. If the seam is not at the shoulder center, rip it out and re sew it. The seam should run along the very top of your shoulder from the middle of your neck (when you look at it sideways) to the top of your arm. It should look like this. The middle point of my shoulder is at the bony prominence.

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You really want to make sure that your side seams are pinned correctly before messing with the shoulders. I would recommend fitting the side seams as if you were planning to sew them (because that is the first part of step 7).  I had my side seams pinned a little funny, which messed up the shoulders (one ended too far back on my arm). When I fixed the side seams, the shoulders seams magically ran right where I wanted them to.

Here is what I have so far.

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Oh em gee folks! We’re almost done with the cover. All that is left is fitting the bottom half, marking the cover and zipping it on the foam lady. Bet I can finish it up in one more post. Thanks for reading!

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