Thursday, 1 March 2012

Sleeve trouble

I have had a lot of trouble with putting the sleeves into my jacket. After my third (or is it fourth?) attempt, I have made the decision to stop and leave it with what I have, rather than risking over-working and stressing the fabric.

Although sleeves have an infamous reputation in tailoring, in the past I have not actually had much trouble with them. This complacency was disproved in the case of this project! I believe that the difficulty lies in a) how fitted the jacket is, there is not that much ease across the whole jacket; and, b) how high the shoulder pads are, throwing everything slightly askew.

I have had an awful lot of trouble trying to get the sleeve cap to lie nicely into the sleeve head. To cut a very long story short, I tried as best I could to figure it out, then talked to the tutors upon admitting defeat. Unfortunately this complicated matters further, as different tutors - with different tailoring experiences - gave me completely different advice upon how to proceed, and what materials I should (or should not) use. This left me extremely confused, but after thinking upon all of the advice, and analysing how it would function on the garment itself, I managed to make some of my own decisions regarding how to proceed.

One of the main lessons I learnt from this unfortunate exercise is the principal difference between female and male tailoring: that with female tailoring, you break the "rules"; and you actually use more cavases. 
Making this suit is, to be honest, very difficult. I am trying to find all the solutions to the problems I constantly encounter by myself, whereas if I were making this in a professional workroom situation, I would be following already-established rules and patterns. Discovering it all for myself is proving a daunting and large task. However, it  is giving me a better, broader and more in-depth understanding of the tailoring processes themselves work, and an ability to consider the qualities of and then choose what tailoring materials to use.

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