Sleeve fitting and bodice notes has fantastic information on bicep ease and how it relates to the fitting of the armscye.

I highly recommend Lorraine’s pattern drafting tutorials. She’s the reason I finally figured out that a princess seam bodice would work best.

I’ve had a good-fitting princess-seamed dress for a long time now. It was originally my wedding dress and then I turned it inside out, put it back to front, removed the sleeves, reshaped the neck, dyed it (and $500 dollars later you will end up with a gown that is quite obviously a bridesmaid dress altered to be worn as a cocktail dress), and added front lacing. It’s a comfy medieval-esque dress that creates the right silhouette while being completely incorrect for the period it’s imitating.

Image (Do I look about 6 months pregnant? That’s the only historically accurate part of that dress!)

But it made an excellent base for a princess-seam pattern. I traced the pieces using Glad Press ‘n Seal plastic wrap again. The front in the picture became the pattern for the back, back became the front. I did a sample muslin of one side to just below the bust. Then did an FBA and tried it again. Did another FBA and got a bodice that fits over my modern bra.The back fit perfectly the first time.

(Side-note: if I convert all the fullness to a single dart, it’s almost a right angle. The “basic bodice” about half-way down this page is hilariously different from what I get.)

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