Alright ladies, this is a massive post so be sure to put your big girl pants on and let’s go!
Picking up where we left off in Part 1, I now know I need to add 2 inches to my full bust.
- With the Top Front Yoke and Bodice Front still pinned together, draw a straight line through the centre of each dart until they intercept. This is the bust apex, mark it with a circle.
- Secure the centre front in place. I used a piece of card as backing and secured it with pins. This was my budget version of a proper cardboard cutting mat.
- Daw a line from the middle of the shoulder seam at the stitching line to the bust apex, then, staying parallel to the centre front, from the apex to the bottom. This is line 1a.
- Draw Line 1b from the apex to the arm hole stitching line by the notch marking.
- Mark Line 2, from the apex along the centre of the horizontal bust dart, to the edge.
- Draw a horizontal line, about 1/3 of the way up the Bodice Front. This is Line 3.
- Because I have a reasonably large FBA to complete I made a Y-adjustment rather than just a standard FBA. This meant sharing the 2 inches between Lines 1a + 1b.( If you have an adjustment less than 2 inches, you will probably only need to use 1b, so skip this step.) With scissors, cut up Line 1a, and spread the apex by 1/4 of your total adjustment, for me this was 1/2 an inch. As you make each adjustment, secure the tissue to the backing card with pins so it doesn’t move.
- Cut Line 1b and spread the apex by your total adjustment amount, e.g. 2 inches for me. If you skipped the previous step, continue the cut down the vertical part of 1b and spread the full amount.
- Cut Line 2 up to the apex but not through it, leaving a little hinge. Now swing the bottom part down so that the two edges marked in green above are parallel and an even 2″ apart. This opens up a deeper dart along Line 2.
- When we rotated the piece along Line 2 we also increased the length of the pattern piece so to true the edge we want to cut along Line 3 and spread the now separate piece to match the bottom edge of the pattern, keeping Line 3 parallel along the green edges.
- Fill all the gaps with paper (I’m just using regular lunch wrap, but if you’re smart you can use grid paper to help keep things square) with the exception of the horizontal bust dart (Line 2).
- Try the pattern piece on and check that the centre front matches to your centre front, then mark where the apex really is on your bust. If you’re young and perky, it may be at the original mark but often with a full bust it is a little lower. For me, the difference was 1 1/4″.
- Fill the horizontal bust dart with paper. Check your existing darts (in blue) and see if they point to your new apex (in yellow). Luckily my horizontal one does but my vertical one is way out. At this point I have two options. I can cut a box around the vertical dart and just move it over to the new apex or I can rotate the darts. I know I don’t want such a bulky horizontal dart so I decide to rotate the dart out. First I draw lines from the base of each dart leg to the hinge point (in pink).
- Cut along the pink lines, leaving the hinge point intact and secured to the board with a pin.
- Now swing the middle piece down to close the vertical dart and tape in place.
- Draw a line from the base of each horizontal (Dart 1) dart leg to the new apex. Because I have so much bulk (seen as the empty space in dart 1) to rotate into the darts I decided to make two vertical darts instead of the original one. To mark where these fall I drew two lines (Dart 2 + Dart 3) from the bottom edge to the apex. I just guessed at where I wanted them to fall.
- Cut along the lines of Dart 1 and remove the paper between.
- Now cut up the lines for Dart 2 and Dart 3 to the apex but not through it, so the hinge remains. Now you can rotate and spread the space in Dart 1, between them all. So long as all the darts point to the apex, you can spread these as much as you like.
- Because our boobies are round rather than pointy, we want the darts to end 1-2″ from the apex. Fill the gaps created in step 18 with paper then draw a line from the apex along the centre of the dart (green dashed line). Measure aprox 1″ along this line from the apex and mark. This is your new dart point. Draw a line from this point to the base of each dart leg (pink lines). This is your new dart. Now pin the darts together and try on the tissue again to check for fit and dart placement.
- When you separate the Top Front Yoke from the Bodice Front you may notice the Macaron’s signature sweetheart line has been lost. This is easily fixed by filling in the gap (Pink piece above). You will need to match and fill this new line on the Top Front Yoke too.
- Now make up your muslin of the front and back to check for fit. I’m pretty happy but on my ‘real’ version I think I’ll shorten the vertical darts by another inch.
As a reminder here’s what we are aiming for:
And here’s what I have so far: