Friday, April 18, 2014

Curvy Colette Plus Size Blog Tour: Interview With Alyson Clair

Good morning, friends! As promised, today's stop on the Curvy Colette Blog Tour is focused on the brains behind these lovely patterns: Alyson Clair and Sarai Mitnick.

The Mabel and the Moneta are not only Colette's first patterns for knit fabrics, but also their first with an expanded size range. We thought it would be fun to peek inside the creative process behind these new offerings, so Alyson and Sarai graciously agreed to answer some questions for us. Thanks, ladies!

Today on Idle Fancy, I'm chatting with knitwear goddess, Alyson Clair, while Jenny is hosting the lovely Sarai Mitnick over at Cashmerette. Check out both interviews and let us know how you're enjoying the Curvy Colette Blog Tour!

Mary: Good morning, Alyson! We're so excited about these two designs and fascinated by the creative process behind them.  What were your main sources of inspiration for these patterns?

Alyson: My main sources of inspiration are always classics that can live in your wardrobe for a long time, and also be very versatile. When I'm designing a pattern I try to think of all of the different bodies that may wear it, and how to make it flattering on a variety of them. I'm also a fan of fancy, and comfort. There is no reason you can't have both.

Mary: We're so excited about the inclusive size range of these patterns! Could you describe a bit of what is involved, when fitting an expansive size range?

Alyson: When doing a size range of this scale, it is best to have 2 bases. This is important, as body proportions can change a lot from one end of the range to the other. We fit on a size Medium and a size 2XL live models, and also Colette Patterns now has dress forms of both of those sizes. . So it's double the work from a regular pattern or style, but it is so important to do it right! I'm a super big patternmaking nerd, so it was an exciting challenge to work on this. I'm very happy with how the patterns turned out, and I really think people will enjoy them.

Mary: Your own clothing line, Clair Vintage, is known for chic knitwear. How did you begin designing with knits?

Alyson: I actually did not sew until I got to college. I cursed my way through sewing with wovens in classes. As soon as I learned to sew on a serger with knits, it was magical. I find knits are easier to sew, much more forgiving, and easier to fit. I also looked at what was in my closet. 95% of my wardrobe is knit, and knits are what I am most comfortable wearing. So it was natural as I started making clothes to sell, it was with knits. There is so much fabric variety, it never gets boring. I also really enjoy patternmaking with knits, and love things with spandex.

Mary: It must be a very different process, designing for home sewists versus designing for your own line! What were your favorite parts of this project?

Alyson: Yes it is very different, but it has been really fun! Sometimes I feel like I speak a different language with commercial sewing vs. home sewing, since I spent 4 years working a factory. So I've learned a lot of things in this process, and love it. My favorite thing is all of the variety and options that can be done with the patterns. Working on a clothing line, you make many of a style and have to be concerned with sewing time, fabric costs, and embellishments. Home sewists can do whatever they like. I am so excited to see all of the variations and creativity that will come out of these patterns.

Mary: So many sewists are still afraid to try out knit fabrics. What are the biggest advantages of sewing with knits?

Alyson: If I can sew with knits, so can you! It's just different from wovens, from the way the fabric behaves, and how it is handled when sewn. Have patience, practice, and hopefully fall in love with sewing with knits. There are many advantages to sewing with knits. My favorite one is comfort. My body fluctuates in size a bit, and I like to know I can have 15lb up or down, and still be ok fitting into the majority of my clothing. Knits allow you to move freely, stretch with your body, and be comfortable. Also, a good majority of the time, the sewing time is not as long.

Thank you so much for chatting with us, Alyson! You make knit fabrics sound like such fun to work with! I had a blast sewing up both of these patterns and can't wait for more knitwear options from you and Sarai. 

Readers, I'm curious, how many out there are newbies to knits? Are you excited to give these wonder fabrics a whirl, now that they've been demystified?  If you are interested in trying out knits for the first time, Alyson's new e-book, The Colette Guide to Sewing Knits, is now available. There's no better expert to have at your side, while you sew up the Moneta and Mabel. 

Also, don't forget to pop over to Cashmerette and check out Jenny's interview with Sarai

Curvy Colette: A Plus Size Blog Tour

Wednesday 16 April:  Jenny at Cashmerette
Thursday 17 April:      Mary at Idle Fancy
Saturday 19 April:       Laurence at QuirkyPrettyCute
Monday 21 April:       Tanya at Mrs Hughes
Tuesday 22 April:       T at UandMii
Wednesday 30 April:  Mary at Young, Broke and Fabulous 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Miss Mabel Changes Her Spots: Curvy Colette

Good afternoon, lovelies! As promised yesterday, today's post is all about the new knitwear patterns from Colette. Since Jenny unveiled her fabulous Moneta yesterday, I thought it only fitting that I kick off the Curvy Colette Blog Tour with that most perfect of pencil skirts, the Mabel.

When we first received the two patterns, earlier this month, I fell head-over-heels for Miss Mabel. Why didn't I already own a knit pencil skirt? The concept is genius. All the elegance of a curve-hugging skirt, but with the comfort of yoga pants? Sign me up. Deceptively comfortable clothing is, as has been documented lately, one of my favorite things to make and wear! 

Let me tell you, darlings, the Mabel did not disappoint. She's gorgeous!

For my first foray into knit skirt bliss, I chose a charcoal ponte de roma knit  from Girl Charlee and the longer version of Miss Mabel. It's a midweight knit, as recommended by the pattern, with black foil polka dots marching over it. Up close, the dots have just a bit of sheen, like little leather appliques. Weird, but wonderful.

The only trick for this skirt was choosing the proper size. With other Colette patterns I'm usually a blend of the 14 and the 16, translating to an XL in the new knits. Having never owned a knit skirt before, however, I was trepidatious. Would my proper size cling too much? Would every bump, every rolling hill of my backside be discerned by passers-by? The horror!

I needn't have worried, of course. The XL worked perfectly for my body shape, flattering in all the right places and skimming over everything else. Y'all, my curves look bangin' in this skirt. If you're searching for the perfect work-to-play skirt pattern, look no further. Mabel rocks the category. With a cardigan and tailored button-down, like my new Archer it's paired with here, this skirt is all easy elegance. With a vintage t-shirt and leather jacket? Badass concert attire!

Since I don't currently own a leather jacket, I stuck to the professional side of things for this post. Also, note to Mary: fix that gap in your closet now! Mabel deserves to be a cool kid. 

Let's talk construction though, shall we? Not only does Mabel come with really helpful instructions, but Sarai and Alyson have also released The Colette Guide to Sewing Knits, to hand-hold us through all of those first time knit anxieties. If you are a knits beginner, the Mabel is the perfect pattern to start with. The front of the skirt is pieced, for an extra flattering silhouette, while the back is a simple kick-pleat design. This is a pattern that could easily be sewn on a regular sewing machine, with nothing more than a zig-zag stitch and some courage. Easy, well-drafted, and quick!

Speaking of quick...

Kittens, this skirt took me an hour-and-a-half to make. That's from cutting to hem, y'all. Have you ever heard of anything so wonderful? This is, far and away, my quickest sewing project ever. Everything was really expertly designed, from the seam placement to the waistband lining method, and a breeze to put together. Most of my stitching was done on the serger, apart from the twin-needle hem, which also hurried things along. 

This was such a fun pattern to make! Once my sewing schedule calms down, expect to see quite a few more Mabels. When a skirt is this cute, a girl needs it in every color, don't you think? If you were at all nervous about how a knit skirt would translate onto a curvy body, rest easy. Grab a heavy knit and make yourself a Mabel! You won't regret it. 

The details...

Things I Loved:
  • The ease! 1.5 hours, cannot be emphasized enough. 
  • The seaming! So, so flattering for those who want to show off some curves.
  • The comfort! Knits are the best. 

Things I Changed:
  • Not a thing! I sewed the straight XL of Version 3

Things I Will Change Next Time:
  • Not a thing!

Tips & Tricks:
  • Finding a nice midweight knit is key here. If you want a skirt that will glide over hills, instead of cling to them, you need something more substantial than a jersey. Try a ponte, double-knit, or very stretchy pique. 

Fabric & Notions: 
  • 1 yard of gray-and-black ponte from Girl Charlee - $7.50
  • Colette Mabel pattern - courtesy of Colette Patterns

Don't forget to keep up with the Curvy Colette Blog Tour on all of our stops! Tomorrow, I'll be back for an interview with knitwear goddess herself, Alyson Clair, and next week I'll debut my own Moneta dress. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Announcing the Curvy Colette Blog Tour!

Good evening, darling ones! Today has been quite the exciting day at Chez Fancy. 

For the last twenty-four hours, the internet has rejoiced over the new knit pattern offerings from Colette Patterns, the Moneta and the Mabel. The Moneta is an elegant dress with three sleeve variations and five--that's right, five!--collar options, while Mabel is the perfect, simple pencil skirt. Not only are they two absolutely gorgeous designs, but they are being offered in an expanded size range. Both patterns are available up to a size 3x! 

When the lovely Jenny and I heard about these patterns last month, we were over the moon. Gorgeous patterns for women of every size? We needed to celebrate! Thus, the Curvy Colette Blog Tour was born. After joining forces with Sarai, we contacted some of our favorite curvy sewists and asked them to sew up their own stylish versions of the Moneta and Mabel. Over the next two weeks, we'll be hopping from blog to blog, sharing pretty knitwear pieces and celebrating curvy fashion. 

Jenny kicked off the tour today, with her smashing striped Moneta, and there are so many great outfits to come! The full line-up is below, so gear up for a fortnight of loveliness!

Wednesday, April 16th -- Jenny at Cashmerette
Thursday, April 17th -- Mary at Idle Fancy (That's me! That's tomorrow!)
Friday, April 18th -- Exclusive interviews on Cashmerette and Idle Fancy with Sarai and Alyson
Saturday & Sunday, Aprl 19th & 20th -- Laurence at Quirky Pretty Cute
Monday, April 21st -- Tanya at Mrs. Hughes
Tuesday & Wednesday, April 22nd & 23rd -- T at UandMii
Thursday, April 24th --Jenny at Cashmerette
Friday, April 25th -- Mary at Idle Fancy
Wednesday, April 30th -- Mary at Young Broke & Fabulous

If you want to keep up with all the Curvy news, follow our blogs and social media! We'll be linking to all the pretty pieces, throughout the next two weeks. This is the first adventure of what we've dubbed the Curvy Sewing Collective, but not the last. We're dedicated to making home sewing more accessible for plus-sized and curvy women. There will be sew-alongs, tutorials, and all sorts of inspiration coming your way over the next few months! 

Lastly, a huge thanks to Sarai and Alyson for their generosity in this venture. We're so thrilled to help showcase these patterns and encourage other curvy sewists to sew with knits! 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Miss Artemis Seeks the Sun + Project Sewn

Good afternoon, kittens! Today marks the official beginning of spring. It's not the beautifully sunny days or the blooming flowers that usher it in, but something much, much nerdier. The Masters. This weekend, Sam and I are headed down to Austin, in order to indulge in a time-honored Danielson past-time: watching too much television, while eating BBQ and cheering for a tiny white ball. 

For me, a lot of this weekend will also be spent sewing. In addition to several sewing commitments on the docket, I'm in the full throes of preparing for Project Sewn. The designers for the upcoming season were announced earlier this week and I'm honored to be among their ranks. This is such an impressive group! Erin, from Miss Crayola Creepy, wrote a lovely post yesterday about her own decision to compete, which really resonated with me. You see, my excitement about participating was quickly overshadowed by doubtsI mostly sew dresses from patterns, are my skills up to this? What if I get laughed out of the competition, because a button-hole is wonky? What if nobody wants to vote for a plus-sized sewist? What if...What if...

Obviously, that kind of thinking was quickly banished. I've decided, much like Erin, that the key to enjoying this process is staying true to myself. This competition is such a wonderful opportunity, not only for exposure to the sewing world at large, but to challenge my skills. There are a few difficult projects I've had kicking around in my head for eons, but labeled as "someday" things. For Project Sewn, I'm tackling these head-onusing the competition as an excuse to make my dream garments! If I get voted out early, which is a distinct possibility, I'll still have checked off some sewing goals. It's going to be so much fun, no matter what!

With such a full sewing schedule, however, it means leaving a few other projects by the wayside. I had originally planned to spend the spring making a half-dozen easy, comfortable sundresses in preparation for summer. Instead, I'll be working exclusively on prior commitments and Project Sewn pieces. Except, of course, for this dress. Meet Artemis, my platonic sundress: a simple gathered skirt paired with my standard base bodice. 

In Texas, we spend most of the year bracing ourselves for summer. When you're sewing with thoughts of imminent 100-degree days, certain parameters come into focus. Cool, breathable fibers are a must, while form-fitting silhouettes should be used sparingly. The best summer dresses are sleeveless, swishy, and made from the lightest possible cottons. If you want to dress it up, grab a cardigan or blazer for the indoors. Layers are a southern sewist's best friend! 

Those guidelines gave me the Artemis. I used my bodice sloper to create a simple scoop-necked dress, adorned with a wide, gathered skirt. So easy! It's six darts and miles of gathering, finished off with a lapped zipper in the back. Only the bodice is lined, as fully lined dresses can be oppressively hot in August, in a coordinating orange cotton lawn. 

The fabric is a light, floaty cotton voile from Joel Dewberry's Heirloom collection. It's been in my stash for years, along with its purple colorway cousin, waiting for the right project. The print reminded me of Moorish painted tiles, like ones scattered through Spanish architecture, so buying it was a must. First it was going to be a Colette Jasmine blouse, then a layered skirt, butlet's be honestit had sundress written all over it! The pairing of tangerine and sky blue makes me want to stroll through an open-air farmer's market or sip sangria on a (well air-conditioned) patio. 

Pattern-matching was kind of a battle, but it turned out reasonably well. There are little spots that aren't quite perfectthe side seams, oh heavenly seam ripper, the side seamsbut nothing is too distracting. All-in-all, this dress is just what I wanted: a simple, pretty project before the days of epic sewing begin. There was minimal fuss and a totally delightful result! I'm especially looking forward to wearing this beauty, once my standard summer glow returns. That orange is going to be killer! 

Alas, it's back to the sewing cave for me. My highly anticipated day off will be spent cheering over birdies and muslining a vintage pattern. Wish me luck! Oh, improbably high bust darts, how I adore you...

The Details...

Things I Loved:

  • The ease! This is a three-hour dress, tops. Is there anything better?
  • The fabric! Soooo light and airy. 
  • The bodice! Slopers are such a great bodice base. This one was made a little roomier, with those sweltering summer days in mind, which makes it super comfortable. 

Things I Changed:

  • Nothing! Ah, the beauty of self-drafting.

Things I Will Change, Next Time:

  • Come June, my next month of open sewing, I'm going to make a pleated version of this dress. Bring on the novelty prints!

Tips & Tricks:

  • When gathering wide expanses of fabric, try three rows of basting, instead of two! It allows for more even gathers and control. 

Notions & Fabric:

  • 3 yards - Joel Dewberry voile
  • 1.5 yards - orange cotton lawn lining. 
  • 22'' orange zipper

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Miss Emilia Captures the Castle : The Mortmain Dress

Good evening, sparrows! Today, we had our first big spring thunderstormcomplete with window-rattling thunder and buckets of rain. All those ominous clouds had one lovely side effect, however: hazy, filtered lighting. Since getting my fancy new camera, I've developed a disturbing emotional investment in lighting conditions. I'm now throwing around phrases like "the golden hour" and dragging poor Sam hither and yon, in search of reflective walls. Luckily, I had a project all ready to document this afternoon, so I trotted out to indulge my photographic whims. 

This is the Mortmain Dress from Gather, an independent pattern company out of the UK. I'm shocked more of these haven't appeared in Blogland, because this dress is adorable. Not only does it have a waistband, which is a surprisingly rare design feature, but it was also named for the Dodie Smith's beautiful novel, I Capture the Castle. Ever a sucker for waist-emphasis and literary geekery, I couldn't say no to the Mortmain. I paid the international shipping and checked my mail compulsively for the three weeks it took to arrive. 

Once upon a time, Fabric Mart held a crazy clearance on all of their cotton shirtings. As a result, I have an inordinate number of small scale striped fabrics in my stash, including the navy-and-white one featured in this dress. I love using them for bodice muslins, because they make super cute linings, if the fit turns out alright. This one, however was destined for greater things. I thought it would make a perfect Mortmain, when paired with the leftover navy linen from my last Emery dress. Lo and behold! I was correct.

This is a wearable muslin, of a sort. I did a substantial FBA on the bodice, which turned out perfectly, then made the rest of the dress as prescribed. As can sometimes happen with FBAs, once the whole dress was put together the fit wasn't quite as perfect as it seemed. There's a tiny bit of stress on the waist darts, which is much more noticeable in pictures, but that I'm going to fix next time around. They need to be shortened by a good half-inch. Bodice fittings: always an adventure!

Despite little fitting things to figure out, I adore the Mortmain. This is such a well-drafted pattern. Everything fits together beautifully and the final product is just as adorable as the pattern envelope promised. Why don't more dress patterns have separate waist pieces? One of my biggest challenges, as a plus-sized hourglass figure, is fitting both my bust and waist. Invariably what fits my bust is a little poofy in the area below. A waistband, however, fixes that problem and emphasizes my shape. Brilliant!

The Mortmain's construction was so easy, kittens. It's a very basic pattern: six darts total, simple box pleats, and an exposed back zipper, all finished off with facings. If you're a beginner who's looking for a more exciting dress pattern to try, this would be a great option. The instructions were wonderfully clear and easy-to-follow, as with most indie patterns.

Of course, this is me we're talking about. You know I didn't follow this pattern to a tee.

First off, there is no interfacing in this pattern, not even in the waistband. Waistbands tend to stretch out over time, so some reinforcement was necessary. In order to achieve that and omit those pesky facings, I fully lined the bodice and waist with more cotton shirting. Hmm...I wonder why the bodice is under unexpected stress? Surely not because I went rogue on the pattern plans! 

The only other change I made was to hand-pick the exposed zipper in, rather than insert it by machine. Hand-sewing is my absolute favorite thing to do, while watching television. This one was put in, while watching Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries, one of my favorite book series turned into a small screen gem by the lovely Aussies. If you haven't watched them, the first season is on Netflix, while the second is already up on! I highly recommend them for other lovers of the 1920's and well-crafted mysteries. They're also a joy to sew along with, thanks to all that costume eye candy.

Back to the subject at hand, darlings. The Mortmain dress is an utter success! The size range isn't quite as broad as I would prefer--it only goes up to my waist size, a UK 18/US14--but it's worth the purchase, if you do fall within its range. The design is simple, but still different from the regular Big 4 herd, and ideal for beginners or advanced sewists looking for an easy project.

Personally, I'm already dreaming up ways to modify this pattern. With the side dart rotated back to the waist, it could easily turn into a gathered bodice reminiscent of 1950's shelf bust party dresses. It would also look killer with a collar, or a contrast waistband set off against a novelty print. Too cute!

The details...

Things I Loved:

  • The waistband! Such a fresh twist on the basic dress pattern.
  • The skirt! I love a box pleat. You will definitely see this skirt pattern adapted onto other bodices. 
  • The fabric! This linen continues to rock. 

Things I Changed:

  • Hand-picked the zipper in place. 
  • Fully lined the bodice and waistband. 

Things I Will Change, Next Time:

  • Lengthen the skirt by two inches. 
  • Shorten the bodice darts by 1/2 inch
  • Finish with bias tape, instead of the prescribed facings or lining as I did here.

Tips & Tricks:

  • I highly recommend that you reinforce this waistband somehow, whether that be through interfacing, underlining, or lining as I did in this version. If you want this fit to last, that baby needs help to avoid stretching out. 

Notions & Fabric:

  • Navy & white shirting - $5
  • Navy linen - Courtesy of Mood Fabrics
  • The Mortmain Dress Pattern from Gather - £13
  • 22-inch white zipper - $2.50

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Miss Emery Packs Her Bags

Good morning, lovely ones! Today's project is a bit of mixed bag, I have to be honest. While it's a perfectly nice dress, the final product is a lesson in almosts. It's almost exactly what I wanted. It almost fits correctly. It's almost the perfect spring dress. 

Let's start with the good first, though, shall we? For my Mood project this month, there was a challenge to meet. We were asked to pick a designer collection from the Spring/Summer 2014 runways shows, then sew a piece that could fit into the collection we fancied most. There were quite a few gorgeous collections this season, but I ended up choosing one of my stand-by inspirations: Orla Kiely

Kiely's collection is utterly delightful, filled with gorgeous linens, whimsical animal prints, and early 60's silhouettes. It's very Wes Anderson meets The African Queen. The S/S 14 Kiely girl is a twee, binocular-toting naturalist on her first safari after grad school. 

In order to properly channel this aesthetic, I ordered two lengths of linen in my favorite of Kiely's color pairings: navy and coral. Mood has an absolutely gorgeous selection of linens and these two are no exceptions. The navy is actually a Ralph Lauren fabric, lightweight and with gorgeous body, while the coral is a midweight linen-cotton blend with a sturdy hand. They are a really lovely pair. 

Initially, I had planned to turn these fabrics into a Hawthorn from Colette Patternsa simple navy shirtdress, with coordinating coral buttons and collar. It would have been gorgeous, but a shipping mix-up meant I didn't actually get these fabrics until last weekend, so the time just wasn't there. Instead,  I reached for the Emery Dress from Christine Haynes, determined to finally make a proper version. The collar variation was perfect for my Kiely-esque vision and the skirt was wide enough to take advantage of the flowy navy linen. Even better, I'd already fit the Emery bodice to perfection! What could go wrong?  

Well—contain your shock, kittensit turns out that linen and faille don't drape in the same manner. They are, in fact, polar opposites. Where faille holds any structure you can imagine, linen is much more loosey-goosey. It wants to float and blouse. That's why we love it, after all. It's the ideal summer fabric! Unfortunately, that meant that my perfectly fitted Emery bodice wasn't perfect at all. The armscyes gaped, while the underbust poofed. 

I took it in where I could, but the dress is still just a bit big those in areas. Not enough to bother me when wearing it, but enough that I still notice in these pictures. You can also totally see where my seatbelt crossed my chest in the car before taking these. Oh, linen. Won't you hide any sins? 

Let's circle back to the bright side, though! This fabric is lush, y'all. I've written three different analogies, trying to capture what it feels like, and one of them involved angel butts. The navy is slightly slubby in texture, as a good linen should be, and so breathable. When Texas summer hits, I'm going to wear the hell out of this dress. Usually, I give up on pretty clothes sometime in mid-August, instead wearing thin shapeless knit pieces and murmuring, "Whhhhyyyyy?" This year, I will have linen to cool my heat-stricken fashion senses. Joy!

 Now, onto construction details! The Emery was mostly fun to sew up. It's a very simple pattern, which makes it ideal for beginners, but could be embellished a hundred fabulous ways. There are eight darts, gathering of the skirt waistband, installation of the bodice lining, and an invisible zipper. From start to finish, this dress took me about six hours to sew, because I chose to sew the lining in completely by hand. 

There were a few things that gave me issues, but they were a cutting mishap and a thing I shouldn't have tried anyhow. First off, one of my back bodice pieces was just a touch wider than the other, which made installing the collar on that side an adventure. The other was the Fucking Invisible Zipper of Doom.

Holy banana slugs! Invisible zippers are worse than mayonnaise. No matter how precisely I measure or what tricks I use, my waist seams never line up properly. This one, I installed three separate times to no avail. Despite both back pieces being identical in length, the zipper decided the seams should be separated forever. Ugh. They're still like a centimeter off, but I don't even care. I am done letting that zipper toy with my emotions! My gut said to sub it out for a hand-picked zipper, as is my wont, but I wanted to stick to the pattern instruction for an honest Emery experience. 

So, that was a mistake. My next Emerybecause, I will conquer this pattern's fitwill have a traditional zip.

Overall, my review for the Emery herself is two thumbs up. All of these issues with this dress were user error. I think that, in the wake of some good news this week, the universe wanted to reinforce that I'm not Coco Chanel yet: "You can successfully sew with silk and sign on for A Cool Secret Thing, but I still have your number, Mary. Here, have a box full of invisible zippers for your trouble."

The Details...

Things I Loved:
  • The collar! Such a sweet touch.
  • The fabric! Mood rocks, as ever. I want to only wear linen and silk faille, because they've spoiled me so. 
  • The skirt! Swishy full delight. 
  • The skirt length! I didn't have to lengthen, in order to get the perfect hem length. Wonder! Awe!
Things I Changed:
  • 2.5 inch FBA
Things I Will Change Next Time:
  • Sub out for a traditional zipper, so that I don't turn into a fire-breathing sewing monster. 
  • Revisit that FBA on a size smaller, so that I can address the fit issues in drapier fabrics. 

Tips & Tricks:
  • If you hate invisible zippers, don't sew them. 

Notions & Fabric: