The first step in constructing my 1760s Curtain-Along jacket was to draft up the pattern from Janet Arnold (you can read more about the pattern I chose in my Initial Curtain-Along Thoughts post). In my experience, sometimes the patterns work pretty well without a lot of tweaks, but sometimes you really do need to do some serious fitting to make them work. Given that knowledge, I decided to make a mock-up of the pattern without any adjustments to see how it would fit. The measurements weren’t too far off of my own, so I didn’t think I’d run into any really awful problems.
And here are the results! I put the mock-up together matching up all of the points that were indicated in the pattern.
Initial state. It is pinned down at center front, but I haven’t made any other adjustments. Squishy is pretty close to my shape, so you can see that there are some adjustments that need to be made for the jacket to fit me.
First problem: the gap at the shoulders. You can see on the left that I’ve pinned out the excess fabric, and on the right side nothing has been pinned.
Second problem: the center back waist point is halfway up the back! I extended the center back seam above the waist so that the waist would sit lower and match the side fullness.
I don’t think anyone has a back/hip area that would easily fit into this shape…
Third problem: sleeves that are too far off of the shoulder and twisted around in a way that is odd looking and uncomfortable. I had to try this on to make those observations, but you can see the problems in the picture.
The solution was to take the sleeve off, adjust the armsceye, and pin the sleeve back on without it being twisty. You can see on the left side that I’ve adjusted the sleeve, and on the right I didn’t do anything.
Oh, I also lengthened the sleeve pattern a bit, because it was a little short on me, and extended center front so it would actually close… After making the adjustments to the pattern, I took to the scissors and cut out the real fabric, mineral felicite and peach linen lining. Then it was on to the hand sewing…