I’ve never been able to define my figure based on fruit. If a pear were a little deformed with a large upper half, but slightly smaller than the lower half, that’s me. Also, in the lower half, add a crease for a double belly. I have a large bust, narrow shoulders, small rib cage, protruding double belly, wide hips, big bum, big biceps, big thighs, short arms, tiny hands and tiny feet. In other words, I’m adorable, sexy, and fabulous.
- High bust: 44″
- Full Bust: 52″
- Under Bust: 44″
- Waist: 46″
- Hips: 56″
- Bra size: 44 HH
- Height: 5’4″
It’s been so long since I’ve worn or even tried on RTW, but, according to the Torrid size chart, I sit around a 22. My bra size is a 44HH (of note, though, I’ve not gone bra shopping for a long time since I make my own bras; I do lots of alterations to my patterns and often start with this as my size, but then will tweak the pattern like crazy so I am unsure of my RTW size).
In sewing patterns, my size is all over the map. In McCall’s/Butterick/Vogue, I usually start with a 22 for the shoulders and then make adjustments from there. In Cashmerette, I go with 24 G/H graded to a 26 at the waist/hips. In Muse Patterns, I use the biggest size at 50. In other indie pattern companies, I find i use a size 26 or 3X, depending on the size range.
- Full bust adjustment. Even if the pattern goes up to my bust size, I usually try to use my upper bust measurements to get the shoulders/armholes fitting and then do an FBA. I don’t need to do this adjustment with Cashmerette patterns.
- Narrow shoulder adjustment. Even with an FBA, I find myself narrowing the shoulders after a muslin by about an inch.
- Large bicep adjustment. I always need to add to the upper arms to get a good fit. I usually need to add a few inches.
- Full bum adjustment. Not necessary for most of the dress patterns I use, but in pants I usually add a 1-2″ to the back crotch curve to get them to fit my booty.
- Shortening the length. Most patterns are made with a taller woman than me in mind. Depending on the pattern, I usually have to shorten patterns by 2-4 inches for skirts and pants.
- Changing a center back zipper to a side zipper. I have mobility issues that make zipping up a center back zipper absolutely impossible. I sometimes use a center back zipper in skirts where you can turn them around nicely, but I will most often change a pattern to have a lapped zipper on my right side since that is my good shoulder and I can just reach under my arm and unzip.
I am most often seen in the wild in a dress or a skirt with a cardigan over top and leggings underneath. I like sleeveless dresses and tops paired with cardigans and other layers. I’m pretty pale and burn really easily so I need protection from the sun, especially in the summer. Sometimes you will catch me in jeans with a 3/4 length top and, in colder months, a hoodie. Kicking around home, I am most often in shorts with elastic waists and sleeveless tank tops or, if it is a colder month, pj pants/tshirt/hoodie. I like coats with a fit and flare look so that they show off my curves and work well with a dress/skirt or a pair of pants underneath.
My go-to pattern for circle skirts is Cake Pattern’s Pavlova skirt. Seen here with Simplicity 1812 top.
Fit and Flare/Shirt Dresses
M6696 shirt dress is ubiquitous in the sewing blog community and a definite favourite of mine. I’ve made several versions now including a version just using the skirt.
M6887 is a great fit and flare and, with those princess seams, is due to become a favourite of mine. I only have one version so far, but plans for a bunch more.
Skinny Jeans/Hip Skimming Tops
Style Arc’s Misty Jeans are my favourite pants pattern and my first. I have three pairs so far and a few more planned for the fall in stretch corduroy. Paired here with Cashmerette’s Springfield top in a soft animal print rayon. Reviewed here for the CSC.
For a more casual look, my Misty Jeans are paired with Cashmerette Concord T shirt.
Decades of Style Three’s a Charm jacket is the perfect blazer for wearing over the full high-waisted skirts. It also works well with pants:
Here the jacket is paired with Misty Jeans and a Concord t-shirt in tunic length. I can see it working well with the Springfield top as well.
My favourite cardigan pattern is Muse Patterns Jenna Cardigan. Pictured here without buttons (because I always wear it open in the cropped length and I didn’t have buttons at the time to go with the bright pink) using the v-neck expansion pack and the shoulder yokes. There are so many different variations you can create with this pattern that is a perfect workhorse. The dress under is a Cashmerette Upton bodice with a gathered maxi skirt.
Here is a longer v-neck merino wool Jenna cardi paired with a Snapdragon pencil skirt in a heavyweight wool plaid. My top is a RTW. Definitely channeling my inner vixen here.
These are my go-to patterns, but I enjoy challenging myself with new silhouettes and styles. I recently made my first pair of shorts and my first tent dress.