HOW TO adjust the length of a pattern

The recently released PRETTY BLOUSE features elasticized cuffs and waist.  When I'm drafting my patterns I work to a set body size but what to do if you happen to be a bit taller or shorter than the average gal?

I've added some lengthen/shorten marks to the pattern but to make things a little easier here's a step by step to help you through the process.

1. First work out what size you are.  My standard body measurements are listed right here along with instructions on how to measure yourself.  To check your length, measure down from the side of your neck at the shoulder to your natural waist.  If you find a difference of more than 1cm then I would recommend adjusting the pattern.  

SIDE NECK TO WAIST (body size) 
Size 6 - 41.8cm 
Size 8 - 42.4cm
Size 10 - 43cm
Size 12 - 43.6cm
Size 14 - 44.2cm

   2. Now you know what size you are cut out your pattern and tape all the pieces for the front and back together following the guides on the pattern.  In this case I'm going to cut out a size 10.

3. I've placed the center front fold line of my pattern against the fold in the fabric and I want to add an additional 2cm.  Cut the pattern along the lengthen/shorten line and move the two pieces evenly apart by this amount.  

4. The side seam no longer matches perfectly so with pins or chalk mark out a new side seam.  In this case I've also added a little extra to the length just in case the proportion looks wrong.  I can always cut it off later.  Be sure to make exactly the same adjustments to the back.

5. To shorten evenly overlap the two front pattern pieces making sure that the fold of the fabric and the center fold of your pattern are exactly in line.  Mark out a new side seam shape with pins or chalk and again make sure to adjust the back by the same amount.

The pattern for the PRETTY BLOUSE is available from my Etsy shop in Australian size 6 to 14.  For international customers a size conversion chart can be found here.

The fabric shown in this tutorial is a beautiful Swiss cotton which I found at Tessuti in Melbourne.

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