Sep 17 2017



Here is one of the most common questions we get asked at Ministry of Craft....

Dear Ministry of Craft,

Both my mother and I are self taught sewers. We can work round simple patterns and make a garment, but they don't fit. What we can't do or understand is how to alter a pattern to fit our shapes, which is the best course for us.

Many thanks


Dear Philippa,

Oh what a pain it can be to get the perfect fit when you're making your own clothes, especially if you aren't built to the pattern standards. A couple of things to bear in mind with commercial patterns is that most of them are drawn up based on a standard bust size (normally a B or C cup) and you can also encounter similar problems around the hips and waist depending on your body type.

In terms of our workshops I would recommend Sewing Patterns Decoded which takes you right back to basics to make sure you're up to scratch on all things sewing patterns. It also goes into more detail about some simple alterations you can use to change the fit.

For a more in-depth understanding, especially if you have a C cup plus bra size, I would consider Introduction to Bodice Fitting. This will show you how to fit an existing bodice block to your size and some simple alterations you can make to adapt it into a pattern. The skills gained from this course can then be applied to other commercial patterns.

There is also Made to Measure Skirt and Trouser pattern where you construct a block based on your own measurements so you can go away and convert this into skirts or trousers that will fit you perfectly.

All these courses can be found here.

Good Luck Phillipa, hope to see you in the classrooms soon!