Feb 28, 2012

Placed My Sure-Fit Designs Order

I am very excited...I have a squeal squished tight in my tummy, it feels like the three days before my birthday and I get to open some presents. Eeeehh! SCREAM! 

Tuesday I placed my order with Sure-Fit Designs for a Dress Kit.

When I decided that I wanted to try the Sure-Fit Designs fitting system I didn't know which kit to purchase. I had narrowed the choice between the Dress Kit or the Shirt Kit and I didn't know which would be better for my particular needs. I thought I would try sending an email to Glenda at Sure-Fit Designs detailing my previous pattern fitting failures and my uncertainty. I was very pleasantly surprised when I quickly received a very thorough response to all my questions and concerns. My main issue is that I am a plus size and I thought that instead of getting the fitted bodice I would have to get the looser unisex Shirt Kit. But, Glenda assured me that either kit was suitable for plus size women and that the Dress Kit would fit me since it went up to 62" around for bust circumference and I knew I'd easily fit within its size range.

Perhaps you'd like to see a short video that Glenda prepared on the differences between the Dress and Shirt Kits.

SFD Designing Stylus
So I have chosen the Dress Kit which will also enable me to be able to create tee-shirts, blouses, shirts, dresses, skirts, jackets, and coats...quite an enormous selection.When I purchased the Dress Kit I also added the Design Stylus which is an essential part of the Sure-Fit Designs fitting system. I also added 10 yards of the tracing vellum. At first I wasn't going to get the tracing vellum, but after shopping at Hobby Lobby and Walmart and Amazon.com, the tracing vellum that Sure-Fit Designs offers is the best at the best price.

So here I sit waiting on my order, bouncing off the walls and very, very excited.

Feb 26, 2012

Carolyn's Shirtwaist Style Dress

Carolyn"s Sewing Room: Sure-Fit Designs Dress Kit - Shirtwaist Style Dress

After you get your muslin the way you want it, you can draft your own patterns or use your sloper to alter existing patterns. My first effort was this shirtwaist style dress pictured here. I included a mandarin collar and front and back yoke. I moved the bust dart to the top and gathered it to the yoke. I also made gathers at the back yoke. Then, I made it a drawstring waist. Taking an idea from Hot Patterns, I elasticized the drawstrings for 2/3's length and added fabric ties for the rest.

I received Sure Fit Designs as a Birthday present and love it! I currently have plans for another shirt dress, but changing the design elements to create three different sheath dresses.

Excellent work - Carolyn...and thanks so much for sharing.

Kindly, Glenda

Feb 24, 2012

Joy's Blue Flowered Blouse

Here is another sleeve style I made. Notice the pert and pretty little upside down 'V' at the hem.  I LOVE it too. 
With bust darts in this, you know it is from the Sure-Fit Designs Dress Kit.

Feb 22, 2012

SFD February Live Chat

Hi everyone,
If you are not a member of the SFD newsletter list, then you've likely missed my announcement of the upcoming Live Chat.  It's totally free for you to attend.  I'm calling it the Anniversary Live Chat.  As many of you know, February 2012 is the 30th anniversary of Sure-Fit Designs.  This is another one of my gifts to you.  I hope you're available on Tuesday, February 28 at 5 PM (Pacific Standard Time).  This seemed to be the most acceptable time for our US customers as well as being able to accommodate many of our international SFD seamstresses.

To find out what time corresponds in your part of the world, please do an Internet search.

I just ask that you register ahead of time as there is limited 'seating' and once the 'seats' are full...well, they're full.  Please go to http://www.surefitdesigns.com/SFDChatRoom.html to register.  You will receive one reminder email only on the morning of the chat.

All you need is your Internet connection, computer keyboard and an hour of your time.  Please send me your questions ahead of time so I have an idea of what you want to know.  Send them directly to info@surefitdesigns.com.

If you can't attend, I will be posting the transcript within 2 - 3 days and will let you know the link via an email announcement.

If any of you belong to sewing groups or online pattern forums, feel free to post this announcement.

Hope to chat with you soon....Glenda

Feb 20, 2012

Reading Between the Lines

What’s this all about?  As most of you know, I spend quite a bit of time answering your questions.  I’m always happy to help because I want you to be happy and satisfied with your patterns.  Sometimes your questions are pretty straightforward and easy to answer.  Other times, I have to try and decipher what exactly you are trying to say and what your questions is.  Often times, I have to do a lot of ‘reading between the lines’.   And, frequently, you describe something you’re doing with your patterns and it spurs me to think that others might be interested in what you’re doing (no names, of course)  so that we can all learn what might be easier or work better for you.

From time to time, I’ll share brief renditions of the exchange or my thoughts about what has happened.  It certainly is an eye-opener for me to see through the eyes of someone else’s thought processes – or at least it’s my perception of your thoughts.

So…for you to help me understand what you’re trying to say or question, please…please…please send photos of the situation, or better yet, if our back-and-forth doesn’t solve the issue quickly, let’s set up a Skype session with one another.  It’s just so much easier to really see what it is you are talking about and give you some direction.  Or, you can simply call me – sometimes that’s the quickest resolution.

Skype Address: sure.fit.designs
Phone: 541-344-0422 (in Oregon – PST)

Feb 17, 2012

Carolyn's First Experience with Sure-Fit Designs

Carolyn's Sewing Room: Sure-Fit Designs Dress Kit Test Bodice

I became interested in Sure-Fit Designs when Glenda Sparling did a Chat on Pattern Review. Sure-Fit Designs has several pattern kits - Dress (consists of a fitted blouse and and skirt), Shirt, Pants, and Children's Kit. You take your measurements and then find a matching dot to your measurement on the master pattern (either for bodice and skirt or pants). You then draw your sloper (Glenda calls it your body blueprint) to your measurements. There are not very many measurements. For instance, there are only 11 for the dress kit bodice and skirt.

After you draft your sloper, you sew up a muslin. Tweak it if necessary. Here is my muslin, which I thought turned out great. The only tweaks were for sloping shoulder, taking it out a little at the high hip, and narrowing the shoulder. I'm sure the last two alterations were user error when taking my measurements. I always have to alter for a sloping shoulder.

PS.  Carolyn has agreed to let me post her progression with using Sure-Fit Designs.  Watch for the finished garments she's made for herself and her husband.  She's also sewn up a 'Sure-Fit Designs storm'.
Carolyn's Sewing Room: Sure-Fit Designs Dress Kit Test Bodice

Feb 14, 2012

Which Sure-Fit Designs Kit to Choose?

Glenda, I am a beginning sewer attempting to sew my own clothes.  I have been very frustrated with commercial patterns which even when I find them in my plus size, they don't fit me. I would like to try the Sure-Fit Designs fitting system.  My question to you is which kit should I purchase, the Dress Kit or the Shirt Kit?  I watched the video: Differences between the Sure-Fit Designs Shirt and Dress Kits  but I still feel insecure about which to purchase. 
I guess because I am plus size that I should get the Shirt Kit but it would be really wonderful to have form-fitting darts even if my shape is a plus.

Thank you, Rebecca

Hi Rebecca, I presume the link at the bottom of your email goes to your own blog and there I see a photo of you and your happy hubby!  (At least I presume that's you).  If so, I would definitely recommend the Dress Kit since you'll need the bust dart template (Adjust-A-Bust) for good fit (It offers an A to E-cup bra size).  Then once you have your test muslin completed, you can add more ease if you don't like the closer fit of the dress bodice and also leave out the waist fitting darts.  It will all depend on what you want your first project to be after you've done the test muslin.  Your designing options will be 'limitless'.  You might be interesting in watching this video on how to use the Adjust-A-Bust template.

My recommendation is one of the Dress Kit combos - http://www.surefitdesigns.com/Dress-Kit.html.  Just scroll to the middle of the page and see the drop-down window.  The greatest value (savings) is the Dress Kit Combo with DVD - $84.95.  This DVD will give you specifics of exactly what to do for drawing not only the Dress pattern, but also the Pants and Shirt patterns - so once you have it - it will be good for when you are able to order the other kits.  Of course, you also get the Tracing Vellum and Designing Stylus.

Are you on my mailing newsletter list?  If so, the last message I sent out was that I now have the capability to offer lay-away plans. This is another purchasing option for you.  Decide what you'd like - and how much you'd like to pay each month - and then when all payments are completed, the entire combo would be sent. 

And...yes, the Dress kit has been successful for others of plus size.  I'd love it if after you get your projects made, that you share your photos and comments with me to put on my site.

Kindly, Glenda

Feb 11, 2012

Joy's Lady Bug Blouse

 Joy has sewn a number of blouses from her  Sure-Fit Designs Dress Kit.  This fabric features fun little ladybugs.  Joy drew a low round neckline design.   When posted on her blog, Joyful Expressions, she commented, 'I wear this one a lot!'  

From time to time, I'll post photos of her collection of SFD blouses.

Feb 9, 2012

My Comfy Yoga Pants

A few of you have asked to see my Yoga pants when I'm not in 'Downward Dog'.  How did they ever come up with that name?  Once the pattern is drawn (of course - from your well-fitting Sure-Fit Designs Pants pattern and the instructions in Pants that Mix 'n' Multiply), you can sew these over and over again quickly and easily.  I think I have about 4 pairs already.  I just love 'em!!  Here they are.

Waist Fit Close-Up

Downward Dog!

Feb 6, 2012

My Husband the Videographer!

Is there even such a word?  According to my computer’s built-in spell-check/dictionary, there isn’t.  But I think this describes my husband's new interest extremely well.

Last year, we started shooting videos using a borrowed video camera!  Six months later, we got our own camera that took great stills and adequate video.  (There's now 62 Sure-Fit Designs educational videos up on YouTube).  And now, we’ve gone all out!

The latest acquisition is a jazzy, snazzy upper end video camera with a million bells and whistles.  The learning curve is pretty steep, but I know it’ll all come in time.  We’re both taking lessons on camera work out in the field, in the studio and anything else you can imagine.  But he’s the creative one in this endeavor. 

By the way, his name is Wes and you can expect to see a lot more of his ingenuity as the year progresses.  I’m fortunate that he has this creative bent and of course, all of you benefit from the educational videos and DVD’s we produce that enhance your SFD fitting and sewing experiences.

Feb 4, 2012

SFD 30th. Anniversary Gift for you!

Hi everyone,
In case you didn't open your most recent newsletter (from me), there's an Anniversary Gift waiting for you.  Yes, it's the 30th. Anniversary of Sure-Fit Designs.  We started offering this fantastic fitting system back in February of 1982.

To celebrate, I'm offering you new pattern instructions for terrific Tank Tops.  Just hop on over to SFD Anniversary Gift to download your copies.
Tank Top General Instructions

You'll find:
  • General Instructions for basic the Tank Top
  • Tank Top with V-Neck and Lace Inset
  • Tank Top with Center Front Gathers and side seam shirring
  • Camisole Top with diagonal hem

V-Neck with Lace Inset
They're intended to be sewn from stretch knit fabric, but still will have the bust dart for excellent shape.  All are designed from the SFD Dress Kit.

Here's the link again - SFD Anniversary Gift

They are totally free until Feb. 29, 2012.

Enjoy...with my compliments!

Camisole with Diagonal Hem
Center Front Gathers