The Merits of a Basic Fitting Pattern
Slopers help simplify the fitting process.
See Step 1 (below) for a simple example of sloper/pattern alignment using a pattern shaped much like the sloper. Start with a commercial pattern that matches your measurements as closely as possible at the shoulders if it's a top, or at the hips if it's a bottom (though the technique works equally well if the pattern is sized very differently from the sloper).
|Step 1: Align/assess sloper and pattern
All outlines are without seam allowances, and alignment process is same for front and back.
1. Mark seamlines on commercial pattern (or trace pattern along seamlines only).
2. Trace sloper onto separate tissue.
3. Position sloper tissue over pattern with centers aligned, then slide sloper up or down until shoulders match at neckline. Start with back, then work on front. 4. Pivot and distribute dart control (see sidebar on p. 50) as necessary to make side seams parallel and align dart placement. Comments below reflect author's judgment of commercial pattern at each seam, based on comparison with her sloper:
1. Shoulder on pattern too sloped.
2. Armscye on pattern too high.
3. Prefer armscye shape on pattern; sloper fits too snugly for this style.
4. Not sure which above-dart side seam will work best; mark both and test at muslin stage.
5. Side seams not parallel; need to pivot dart control; after pivoting, not enough design ease at side seam.
6. Waistline on pattern too high.
7. Prefer sloper neckline.
1. Prefer sloper neckline.
2. Waistline on pattern too high.
3. Waistline dart OK.
4. Use hip measurement or skirt sloper to compare below waistline.
5. Design ease at side OK.
6. Armscye on pattern too high.
7. Shoulder dart pivoted to armscye because pattern shoulder seam is straight, without dart, suggesting that's what designer did.
8. Shoulder on pattern too sloped.
Work with the back first, positioning the back pattern over the back sloper and aligning the two center-back lines. Imagine you're pulling a garment on over your head: keeping the center backs aligned, slide the pattern until the sloper's shoulder contacts the stitching line of the pattern's shoulder. The sloper represents you, and the pattern parts not covered up by your sloper show the design ease. Is there enough (or too much) design ease at the waist? the hips? across the bust? Is your sloper outside the stitching lines in places, indicating the pattern is too small there? Are the shoulder seams a different length and at a different angle than your shoulders? How far below your own underarm is that armscye supposed to fall?