Once again, this is intended for my Flat Pattern students. If you are someone else’s student, do whatever your teacher tells you.
This sample problem illustrates several of the things that we can do with darts other than just moving them around. We can choose to make one dart into several close-together darts (a “dart cluster” in your text). We can also choose to have darts only sewn part way down, rather than completely closed (a “tuck-dart” in your text), which allows the remainder of the dart uptake to be released as ease. This is a design decision. There are rules for how we manipulate one dart into a cluster. These are on pages 103 – 109 of your text. There are also rules for how we mark tucks. Some of these are in your text, some are not.
Locate the center of the new dart-tuck cluster, based on the sample problem. In this case, there are three tucks: one at the bust level, one above, and one below. We’re starting with the one at the bust level.
Now we start the other two tucks in the cluster by drawing lines 1/2″ above and 1/2″ below the center line.
Mark in a line 3/4″ away from the bust point that crosses all three lines.
From that 3/4″ mark, connect the top and bottom lines to the bust point. (I erased the extra pencil marks.)
Cut out your sloper, including the dart legs.
Cut to, but not through, the dart point on the three new lines, and up from the old dart point.
Mount the sloper on a clean sheet of paper, with the original dart closed. Position the front pieces so that the dart openings are roughly equal, then check with a ruler. (I don’t have any tricks for you to help space them this time. Our rulers don’t work well with threes.)
We’re going to start marking the darts with the middle one. Mark a dart point in the center of the dart space, in line with the pencil line across the pieces. The dart space is 3/16″ of an inch wide, so I’m marking at 1 1/2 of the 1/16″ marks. (Math moment: this is technically 1/32″, but that’s not on our rulers.)
Connect the middle dart legs to this point.
The side dart legs are done differently, because of the way they are cut in out text. The leg closest to the center dart is drawn along the existing (paper) leg. The other leg is made by connecting the corner closest to the center dart with the second dart corner, like this.
This means that the two outer darts in the cluster are mirror images of each other.
Fold your darts closed. Remember that all the uptakes (middles) face downward, because gravity.
You may notice that the cut parts of the block stick out past the edge of the unaltered part of the block. That’s because of the way they were cut and moved. We’ll true that up in the next step.
Fold across all of the darts, along the center front line of the block (sloper). This fold will true up any bits of the draft that stick out too far.
That means that it’s ok if you see that the edges of your two slashed areas are bent back a little. We’ll mark them on those creases so that they will line up evenly with the rest of the front when sewn.
Because these are going to be worked as a tuck cluster, we need to decide where the tuck will be released (where the sewing will stop). I’m marking this 1/2″ from the center front line. (I made this decision mostly because it’s hard to get the ruler any farther into my folded up 1/2 scale.)
Quick check: Your cluster should look a lot like this when you’re done marking the dart jogs.
To begin marking these as tucks, instead of darts, we draw in the dart legs only as long as they will be sewn, using the guideline we drew 1/2″ from the center front edge.
Per your text, for industrial production we would mark drill holes 1/8″ inside the top leg, and on the center line. Both of these drill holes should be 1/8″ before the desired end-of-stitching point. Pattern drafting software marks these in a similar fashion, although you can specify the distance.
What I showed you in class is the X -> O marking. X always folds over O. This may be helpful to you when you’re sewing.
I’ve put in all of the pattern marks except for the grain line. Where can we put that, and what can we line it up with? We can’t put it on the center front this time, because the center front is not straight. If we follow the bottom of the center front, our grain will run along the edge of the white sheet of paper. That doesn’t look normal, does it?
Likewise, if we run the grain parallel to the top of the center front, we also have something that doesn’t look normal.
We want the grain to run relatively straight up and down the body. (It’s never completely up and down all around the torso, because the torso isn’t flat.) So we’re going to place our grain line perpendicular to the bottom edge of the piece. Remember that when the tucks are sewn, the bottom edge will appear straight on the body.
Think about men’s suit coats. If you’ve seen one with stripes, you might have noticed how those stripes are straight up and down at the waist of the coat, but they lean in to the neck over the chest. That’s a very good example of a grainline that runs just like this one. (Some times it’s exaggerated if there’s a dart at the neckline for fit.)
Your finished pattern should look a lot like this