Patterning the Bodice Front
We will be starting with the bodice front piece you made in your size from the previous post, Issue 3. I traced a fresh copy of mine for this tutorial. During this process, I frequently referred to both the image on the pattern envelope and the photo of the actual Barcelona Balcony dress, so you may want to have them handy.
Yoke and Lining
- Draw in the “stitching lines” by measuring 5/8″ around every edge. We are going to be drawing style lines, and this gives you a better visual representation of what your piece will look like once it is sewn together.
- NECKLINE: I think it is very comparable to that of the Barcelona Balcony dress as-is. I made no changes to the neckline, but you could always adjust to your personal preference.
- SHOULDER SEAM: I noticed that on the pattern envelope (in the photo of the live model) it looks like the shoulder seam goes all the way to the edge of the shoulder. As pictured on the Modcloth website, the Barcelona Balcony shoulder seam does not go all the way to the shoulder edge. To cut it in a little more, sketch in a dashed line starting at the shoulder seam, then smoothly connect back into the armscye curve. Connect your dashed line with a solid line using the french curve. Add 5/8″ seam allowance to your new line, and trim away the excess paper.
- YOKE PLACEMENT: This is a tentative step, more for reference than anything, so don’t make any super dark lines yet. I made a mark indicating where I “think” the yoke style line will be (2 1/2″ down), on the center front of the bodice pattern piece. Once we determine our triangle cut-out shape, this may change, but I found it helpful.
- CUT-OUT Placement: So, remember how I said we were going to use Pattern Piece #8 for reference only? Now is the time! This piece creates the sweetheart neckline in the commercial pattern, so I thought it would be a good starting point in determining how low we want this triangle cut out to be, going toward the decolletage. Place Pattern Piece #8 on top of your bodice front pattern piece, matching up the center front lines, and waist lines. Place a dot at the “v” of the neckline. (I traced around it just a bit, instead of drawing a dot, but the “v” was a little distracting.) I visually liked where this point was, so I did not move it. You may want it to start higher (more modest) or lower (more inner boob), according to personal preference. You can always change it later. Keep in mind that your bust point (nice way of saying “nipple”) is approximately a half an inch directly above your dart.
- TRIANGLE CUT-OUT: Maybe it’s just me, but when I’m looking at only half of a pattern piece, sometimes I can be thrown when it comes to “shapes”. It’s like when you’re a kid making those little construction paper hearts, by folding your paper in half. Trying to visualize what half a heart looks like can be tricky, and when you open it up, it might just look like a butt. All of that to say, when it comes to cut-out shapes, I think it’s always best to visualize it as a whole before fully committing. So let’s draw out this triangle on a piece of paper first. Be sure to give it a vertical center line, so we can match it up to our bodice piece.
Now that you have a triangle to reference, place it on your pattern piece matching up the center lines. Now try visualize the center front of your bodice pattern as a whole. How does your triangle piece look proportionally to your bodice? Does it need to be taller? Wider? I liked the size of my triangle, but there was a significant gap between the top of the triangle, and where I “thought” the bottom of the yoke would be (See Step 4, above.) I decided to split the difference.
So my triangle got a little taller, and the style line of my yoke dropped a little. We will see how it looks in the first fitting and take it from there. If your triangle was perfect the first time, 1) I’m jealous, and 2) Just trace it and move on to Step 7.
- YOKE PLACEMENT (FOR REAL THIS TIME): Once your triangle has been drawn in, draw a horizontal line straight across, connecting the top of your triangle to the armscye of your bodice. You have now drawn in the styleline for the yoke. Cut along this line. You can also cut out the triangle from you bodice piece.
- You should have two pieces that look something like this:
- Add 5/8″ seam allowance to the bottom of the yoke piece, the top of your bodice piece, and to the triangle cut-out.
- Label your pieces, and draw in Center Front grain lines.
- CONGRATS! You have successfully patterned your front yoke, and bodice front lining!
You are now ready for Issue 5.