Guide Alterations (Cutting Loose #2)

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I am also short-waisted, so that is even more fun! A size 6P is too small, and a 8P is too big. I also lost 50 pounds somewhat recently, and have been maintaining for 2 years. Throughout the weightloss process, I did tailor items smaller on a regular basis. However, I had the best luck with pencil skirts. The cost to take in the waist and hips on a pencil skirt was very managable. I had a dress altered once to reduce it 2 sizes, and the tailoring cost almost as much as the dress. At some point, you just have to buy new.


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I would size something down 2 sizes, then donate it to the goodwill after that and buy something new. I recently lost over 40 lbs — very slowly, over 6 years — and as I lost the weight, I had a lot of my professional clothes taken in. I just now finally tossed a size 16P skirt that I had already tailored down twice first to about a 14 and then again to about a I also had good luck taking in lightweight pants, without hip pockets or if I had the pockets removed and stitched closed.

Tailoring – What Are Your Top Five Alterations?

I read somewhere that there is an average of 7 lbs between sizes and more like 10 lbs between plus sizes. I have successfully used this method on tees, sweaters, cotton shorts, dry-clean skirts, unlined dryclean pants. So far, I have had no disasters, except some fading and a rougher finish on the fabrics. Also, clothes shrink more vertically than horizontally, so you can easily end up with your pants too short.

Now I just wear them with flats. Anyone have a recommendation for a good tailor in Los Angeles?

15 things home sewers can learn from industrial sewing

Downtown or Culver City areas would be great, but any suggestions would be appreicated! Another one with T-rex arms. I always have to have my jacket sleeves hemmed. Two different tailors told me the jacket could not be hemmed. I ended up paying significantly more to have the sleeves shortened from the shoulder. Ha ha, T-Rex arms! I have that problem too. Regular sleeves are always way too long on me, but petite tops are too short in the body.

I have the same problem with pants, too — I have abnormally short calves but a regular rise. I just had the sleeves shortened on two different jackets, both with non-working buttons on the sleeves, with completely different results. It looks pretty bad. It looks great.

But in-between size me is SOL. So everything is a small, but the arms are a large. I stick with dresses — so I can either put a tight long sleeve shirt under it or wear a cardigan. I have the same problem as layered bob. This thread has inspired me to be less lazy and let more of my skirts down. I have pencil skirts that are supposed to hit at the knee-ish but are a couple inches short on me. No more skirt length apathy! Love it! I am going to see what can be done. I will add that my proudest recent tailoring moment was modifying the epaulets on a trench coat to make them lay flatter.

It was a small tweak but it made the jacket much more flattering to my gorilla shoulders. Letting out sleeves to be longer. Totally this! I always felt awkward about slash pockets — felt like it adds 10 lbs to the look on me. It was an amazing moment for me when I realized that an easy alteration could make some of my least-worn pants into favorites. It fit and looked like a dream.

Then I gained 25 pounds before I had a chance to wear it.


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Does anyone have any recommendations for an affordable tailor in the St. Louis area? Maube Mor — she comes to your house or office! She has done a whole variety of alterations for me and my husband. I have recently started altering almost all my work clothes after losing about 25 lbs over 9 months, which translated to about 2 to 3 sizes depending on whether it is a jacket, skirt, pants or dress. I altered a lot of my in between clothes to avoid having to buy a new wardrobe twice. I was a swimmer my whole life so I have that shape plus boobs.

Not a common shape — I really should have been altering sooner. I most often take in skirt waist, pant waist, dress waist and have also altered jacket length and shortened sleeves. I am noticing that even if I buy my new size I have a major problem with blazers. They are always loose in the waist because they have to fit my ginorm shoulders and chest. I also always get the pants hemmed to fit heels. I always felt frumpy in blazers until I started altering them. What a difference…. Last week I hemmed 8. I get all my pants altered. My jackets are almost always fine if I can get a WP, but if I have to get the W it needs to be taken in and taken in at the sleeves.

However… the one time I sucked it up was when I had big interviews coming up, so I bought a skirt suit one size too big and had the jacket and skirt taken in correctly. I looked damned good. I used it for two interviews, got the second job, and even six months later, people at work were talking about how great my suit fit me during my interview. I need to load up on podcasts and go to the tailor — I have at least 3 pairs of pants and two button-down blouses that need attention.

Zoltan is the owner and main tailor. I used to work with a French woman who was extremely picky about fashion and fit, and Zoltan was the only tailor she would let near her clothes. They sometimes let other tailors in their shop do simple hemming, and those results have been either excellent or just OK, so keep an eye out for hemming variability when you pick up the pieces. I plan to go back and make them fix it, but am not keen to repeat this experience.

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Seconding this. Will you consider doing a post on the different industrial machines available for those that may be considering them? My 14 year old daughter is beginning to sew her own designs. The other day, I heard what sounded like duct tape being pulled off a roll. I guess I need to spend more time with her teaching her how to sew without either. I started sewing for real when I was If the answer is yes, no need for question 2. Great tips for the parts i could translate.

Nips are more accurate and less likely to fray or weaken the seam. The diamond shapes it is referring to are called notches here in the US. How do you find out about classes to learn better sewing techniques? Every now and then I see articles like this talking about industrial techniques, or special tailoring techniques and I really would like to learn more. Best of luck! I have an Consew industrial machine and love it. Thanks for refreshing my memory, great post :. Love this post! Such great tips! Thanks for sharing!

Would like to offer free hosting to useres. Really great tips. I wonder if it has anything to do with great-gran having been a professional seamstress and passing on the knowledge as she taught her kids and grandkids to sew? Hi guys — Thanks for all the great feedback. Plus how to give a professional press. Oh yeah, and how to build a press mat. Cheers — Sharon. I sew professional and I have also work with factories.

I use every tip you said. I have not used pins since I was 16 because of using a serger.

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The pressing table cant live with out it. I built min with complete back board to hold all my scissors and folder for patterns. Plus a a hook for a lint brush. My daughter and I were going to a sewing class, her to learn, me for the socialising. I was showing her how to cut out a pattern, just nicking at each placement notch. The leader of the class pulled me up in front of everyone, telling me I was doing it wrong, that I was supposed to cut around each triangle.

I am a home sewer but was taught using industrial methods and machines, I do use very tip you said. Both do have their place but not in everyday sewing. Dis dis disagree on the rotary cutters. Not the ones home users have access too. Better results less effort safer fingers. These are some great starter tips. Not only in the method idea, known as chain-stitching in quilting but also the idea of keep sewing. A little every day is better and more productive than a hot and heavy weekend of sewing. It keeps the fingers and mind sharp. Also the idea of keep it together; not just a project but try to put all sewing tools in one place, like a cabinet or something.

Years ago the mind blowing fact the fabric is flat changed my way of sewing. All fabrics behave differently, but every single one was created flat. I just wish i could find an industrial machine with some of the features as the home sewing machine. Thanks for sharing the wonderful information with us. Thanks for the tips.

So helpful. What about pre-shrinking the interfacing before ironing to fabric? I use an old, hammered wood table for cutting. I like being able to do whatever I want without concern about damage. I use bed risers to make it a more comfortable height. My cardboard cutting board spreads out any size I need at the time. Oh my goodness!

Incredible article dude! Is there anyone else getting the same RSS issues? Anyone who knows the solution can you kindly respond? Hello my friend! I want to say that this article is awesome, great written and come with almost all important infos. I would like to peer extra posts like this. You used the term when you talked about pressing seams. Thank you for your informative and useful article. Hi, I do think this is an excellent blog. Money and freedom is the best way to change, may you be rich and continue to guide other people.

Again, awesome blog! Here are fifteen: Change your seam allowances. Reducing saves time trimming, grading, notching and clipping the seams after sewing. It makes for a smoother look for your seams. Cut cleanly. Find the largest table in your house. Claim it for your cutting table. Invest in a rotary cutter and a rotary mat to fit the table. Cut your pattern to the cutting line. Press it flat. Instead, hold the pattern down on the fabric with weights.

Block your work. Fit and alter your pattern. Put these notions in a bag. Cut and mark pieces all at once. Fuse a piece of fabric large enough for all your interfaced pieces then cut those. Tie all the pieces together in a bundle with the pattern and bag of notions. Sew continuously. Butt pieces end to end and stitch from one seam to another. Cut them apart when you get to the pressing station. Sew as many seams as possible before pressing. Stop sewing only when you have to cross another seam that should be pressed open first.

Perform similar operations at the same time and sew flat. Sew the details first. Set these aside. Then start assembling the garment. Complete as much as you can before joining side seams. Sewing in a tube is more time consuming than sewing flat. Sew buttonholes first and use them to mark the location for buttons. Cut buttonholes open with a punch instead of a seam ripper. There are brands that cater to an athletic fit.

I have a friend who was forced to start searching for athletic fit shirts. Store bought clothes are sewn based on a very generic "block. For men, from the shoulders to the waist, I'd make the cut slanting inwards, which I visually see as a V shape. The average fabric cut for an average male mannequin would be more of an H shape, especially with jersey knit fabric. Cut it a bit smaller and they can let the stretch to the work, right? Not so for guys like you!

How to alter a shirt to slim fit

My advice is to go as lean as you want, but don't force yourself for the sake of shirts fitting better. Opt for stretchy fabric and shirts with more room where you need it. Just because a shirt is tighter doesn't always mean you're in need of leaning down. Look up stores or brands that aim their products at athletes. I'm not trying to advertise for any brands, but I liked the short-but-sweet explanation given at Huge an Crye's site. Just look them up with "atheletic fit shirts.

Some things that I'd mentioned are what they also talk about. If you're still wanting to wear that shirt, just wear a simple plain t-shirt underneath. You can get away with those extra loose buttons.

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Buy a size larger than XS? Learning something new here every single day I actually have a problem with button up shirts as well. Big chest and small waist. Anything I find that fits in the chest looks terrible in the lower body as a result. A good tailor is your answer. Jeans are also a pain. Big quads, small waist.