Well, yesterday was a total blast! Thank you so much for all your lovely comments, not to mention orders. It’s so fun seeing them pop up on the blogosphere – I’ll do a proper round up later, but here’s Gillian’s awesome tester version to get you going… Don’t forget to tag your makes with #AppletonDress so we can see them all!
One exciting thing is that the first batch of Appleton printed patterns has now sold out! Wowsers! Don’t worry though – we have more coming next week, so if you order now, we’ll ship them to you the week of Oct 19th. Can’t wait? You can buy the PDF, or you can order from our first two stockists, Grey’s Fabrics and PatternReview.com.
As you’ve probably seen by now, the really innovative thing about Cashmerette Patterns is the cup sizing, which covers sizes C – H. Given the average woman in the US is a DD, and the average British woman is a D, doing an Full Bust Adjustment has been a regular thing for most of us, but now we can skip it!
When I developed the pattern with my professional drafter, we spent nearly 6 months working on our “blocks” – the underlying pattern that all subsequent patterns are based on. Given the way in which having a bigger bust affects patterns, I decided that we would do 3 separate blocks: for C/D, E/F and G/H busts. So the different sizes aren’t just “adding a bit on the bust” – they’ve actually been designed specifically for that size.
Because my sizing is new, I’ve had a bunch of questions about it, so I thought I’d answer some of them here today, together with some others specifically about the Appleton Dress. Let me know in the comments if you have any more you’d like me to answer.
Where can I see your sizing?
Should I pick the bodice size that is the same as my bra size?
During my research I found out that there’s huge variation in bra sizes between countries, stores, and even brands. As no two “36E”s are alike, what I recommend is that you use your full bust measurement to pick your size. It might not be the same as your bra size, but don’t worry! If it fits, that’s what’s important.
My bust size could fit into two of your sizes – which one do I pick?
You should pick the size that is closest to your waist and hip size. So for instance, if you have a 38″ waist and 48″ bust, use the 18 G/H rather than the 20 C/D.
What are the high bust measurements of your patterns?
If you need to do an FBA, it’s common to use your high bust measurement as a workaround to get the right shoulder size, so many of us are used to doing that. With Cashmerette Patterns, there’s no need to do this! As the designs have been specifically created assuming you have average sized shoulders (i.e. unlike the big 4, which grade out hugely at the shoulders!) but are busty, and you won’t be needing to do an FBA*, you can use your full bust measurement, just like less busty gals have always been able to do.
There seems to be a lot of negative ease at the bust – is it going to be tight?
The great fit through the bust is partly achieved through negative ease in the wrap dress, and it fits snugly but not tightly. Bear in mind that as sizes get bigger, the absolute negative ease will go up – so 10% negative ease on a larger size is a much higher number than 10% negative ease on a smaller size. That said, if you’re not comfortable with wearing close-fitting clothes, I recommend going up a cup size or two. That’s the joy of sewing!
Is there negative ease at the waist and hips in the Appleton Dress?
As this is a wrap dress, ease at the waist and hips is a funny thing, because ultimately you wrap it around you to where it is comfortable. There is actually a little “positive ease” at the waist (i.e. it’s slightly bigger than the body measurement) and there is a little bit of “negative ease” at the hips (i.e. it’s slightly smaller than the body measurement), but again, because it’s wrapped around you it’s not actually stretching across your body. If you’re significantly pear shaped, you may want to grade up your wrap to a bigger size at the hips.
I don’t want to wear anything too low cut – will I get enough coverage?
Wrap dresses are by their nature pretty low-cut garments, although the Appleton’s “no gape” neckline does make it more family-friendly than most! That said, if you’d like something less low cut, simply size up a cup size or two.
I’m a small cup size C or a B, can I fit in your patterns?
Yes! If you’re a C, there’s a good chance you’ll be fine with the C/D cup. If you’re smaller, you can do a Small Bust Adjustment, which we will have a tutorial on shortly.
Are your sizes US or UK?
They are US indie sewing sizes. As there’s so much variation between brands though, always use your measurements to pick a size.
You say it isn’t going to gape at the neckline… Really? Really?!?!
REALLY! It was my #1 tester comment, and I even have a little video of you of my lovely friend/model Andrea doing a dance – no gaping! (Press the play button – warning, it does have music too!)
How does it not gape? Drafting magic! OK, it’s the combination of the shape of the neckband pieces, and the relative length of the neckband and neckline.
If you have any more questions, please don’t hesitate to ask below, and I’ll try to answer them all!
*for 99% of people!