Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Drafting an A-line pinafore - Taking the measurements

There are, as you would expect for a dress, a fair few measurements to be taken for this pinafore - enough to entitle them to a post of their own. And since my children are not hugely cooperative, I am relying upon my beautiful assistant, Hairy Dolly (we go in for literal naming in this house) to demonstrate where the measurements are taken. What she lacks in beauty, she makes up for in willingness.

Bear in mind that we are taking the measurements to draft the flat body block, from which the pinafore pattern will be traced and altered. So although the pinafore does not incorporate a sleeve, you will still need to take an arm length measurement. If you are so inspired, you can always use the flat body block to make a long-sleeved dress, so the measurement won't be wasted.
The measurements we need for the flat body block are

  • chest,
  • across back,
  • neck size,
  • shoulder,
  • scye depth,
  • back neck to waist,
  • waist to hip and
  • arm length.
You may also want to measure hip to knee, so that you can include the knee line on your pinafore pattern, even though you will not be using it on the flat body block.

Now for the measurements...

The chest measurement is pretty self-explanatory. Put the tape right around the fullest part of the child's chest, just below her armpit and across the shoulder blades

The across the back measurement is less obvious. This is not just half the chest measurement, as you might expect. Instead you measure from 'armscye line to armscye line'. Helpful? OK, perhaps not. Essentially, you measure from the imaginary line running from the armpit to the shoulder tip. You can see in the photo that the tape is positioned on that imaginary line, taking into account Hairy Dolly's slightly odd shape. The measurement will be just under 1/2 the chest measurement.

Neck size is easy to measure in theory - you just put the tape around the base of the neck, just touching the top of the collar bone. In practice? Well, my son is ticklish and I'd never dream of wasting an afternoon trying to take his necksize. If your child is similarly inclined to squeal, then you might be better off measuring the necksize of a well-fitting t-shirt.

Measure the shoulder from the back of the neck at the side, to the end of the shoulder.

The scye depth sounds more complicated than it is - scye is another word for amhole. So just measure down from the neckline to the armscye line (see above for description of this line).

Back neck to waist - again, pretty easy. You go from the neckline to the natural waistline.

And waist to hip goes from the waistline to the hipline, which is the line around the fullest part of the hips/bottom.

Arm length goes from the shoulder edge to the wrist.

Finally, the optional hip to knee measurement. This is the one measurement I can't take from the standard sizing charts because Laura has inherited my short legs (fortunately, not my nose though so I'm not complaining!) I measure from the hipline to the kneeline, and mark this on my patterns so that I know roughly where the dress is going to fall. It has saved me much wasted fabric in the past - there's not a lot you can do with a two-inch skirt-wide strip of fabric other than ruffle it!

Next we have to draft the flat body block. Another post for this I think....

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...