Review · Sewing

Tuesdays with Claire: Square Shoulder Adjustment

This year I’m sewing along with Claire Shaeffer, using her Custom Couture Collection pattern Vogue V8333. Here’s a reflection on my efforts to sew well.

Last week I discussed jacket ease and possibly moving to the next size up in Vogue V8333, which would supposedly give me 3-4″ of ease. The resulting muslin had a decent amount of ease but a very low armscye (I’m in serious science overload these days, so my instincts were to write “data not shown” here). Instead of starting over with the larger muslin, I was encouraged by all of your nice comments last week to go back to my original V8333 muslin since it really did fit well and since I’d already identified the major adjustment it needed: a square shoulder adjustment to allow for shoulder pads. I restitched the shoulder seam, adding 1/2″ at the sleeve seam and tapering to nothing at the neck. Then I raised the armscye the same amount.

The resulting muslin felt like it had just the right amount of ease in just the right places. The armscye was still a little lower than a favorite ready-to-wear jacket that I own, but while attempts to raise it (even more than what was required for the shoulder adjustment) were mildly successful, what little I gained did not feel worth the effort that needed to go into getting the sleeve curve perfect through all of those pattern pieces.

I think I’m ready to cut into the fashion fabric, folks. But, I’m leaning towards only using 1/4″ shoulder pads (and a 1/4″ square shoulder adjustment) in the actual jacket so that I keep the pattern closer to its original design while still getting the benefit of shoulder pads. Thoughts and opinions are very welcome.

I’m very happy to have gotten this far! Finally!

12 thoughts on “Tuesdays with Claire: Square Shoulder Adjustment

  1. Hi Amy! I’m not very good at fitting, but I think this looks great. Besides I’ve nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award. Feel free to read my blog to see what you have to do with it. Congratulations!

  2. Oh I’m so glad it is working out and you’re close to cutting the fashion fabric. How exciting. I definitely think using a 1/4 shoulder pad is the best way to go. Good luck!

  3. Well, for what it’s worth, I think only doing the 1/4″ adjustment and using the smaller shoulder pads would definitely get you the look that you want. The 1/2″ just looks a little bit much from the photos. Great job, Amy!

  4. I personally prefer the look of no shoulder pads, so I think 1/4 is better than 1/2, or course! I am so excited for you, almost ready to cut into the real fabric! And I think peer review among sewists is a lot more forgiving in terms of needing data to be shown 🙂

  5. I’ve been following along with your progress and I think the fit is going to be great! I am not a fan of shoulder pads, so I agree with 1/4 (but believe me, I really am not this advanced so that’s just my gut feeling about it).

  6. I think that shoulder pads are there to give an attractive silhuette. As you have identified square shoulders I agree that you need very little in the way of shaping (shoulderpads) Too large pads will make your shoulders look really odd.
    I really enjoy following your blog and I am so inspired by your creations and your care with fit and construction. I can’t wait to see the finished jacket.

  7. Yay! So exciting! I definitely think you’ve mastered your muslin. In my opinion I think the 1/4″ shoulder pad would give you just the right amount of shaping in the shoulder without it looking costume-y. I can’t wait to see your next steps!

  8. I think your muslin looks fantastic, a very nice fit. Shoulder pads, I am a big fan. they help the front and back of the jacket hang properly. something I often do is use a large shoulder pad (long in the outer cover, so it curves down from the top of the shoulder at least 4 inches) but I operate on it and remove some of the stuffing or layers in the center so it is not so tall. Does that make sense? It is the half-circle-ish shape of the shoulder pad doing a lot of the work. Looking forward to your next steps 🙂

  9. This looks like a really great fit! And I agree that shoulder pads add a nice shape so that the shoulder falls smoothly. (Plus I’m just a fan of shoulder pads, too!) Have you considered shortening this jacket to more of the Starlet jacket length? Just curious…

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