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Pattern Matching – Printed Silk Jumpsuit

This is going to be a stunning one! From the moment I saw the arches printed silk I loved it. The Art Deco print is so striking and it is going to look so elegant in as a printed silk jumpsuit, I can’t wait to start making it! The striking pattern embellishing this silk fabric is derived from a design by F. Gregory Brown (1887–1941) for William Foxton in the V&A’s textile collection. This silk print design is called Arches in Black and Grey. The undulating design of zigzags and diamonds is unmistakably Art Deco.

Cutting the pattern pieces was pretty daunting as there were so many pieces but all were labelled so I just took my time to understand what I was cutting. Sharp scissors were required for the delicate pattern paper.

As a newbie to pattern matching I was a little concerned when using the instructions for laying my pattern pieces. I was struggling to get a good match when folding the cloth. I felt more confident cutting in a single layer of fabric. This way I could use the already cut pieces as a guide to pattern match the next piece.

Pattern matching is tricky. I found taking my time to understand the pattern and where the repeat was key to getting it right. 

I found using the cut piece to match the pattern, pinning it down then laying the pattern piece over the top to ensure I was going to match the pattern at the seam in the correct place helped. Then I tacked the fabric together to help in places too. 

In places where the pattern was particularly difficult to match I found folding over the seam allowance was helpful.

When cutting pieces I checked the grain line at the top and bottom to ensure level. As the trouser pieces were quite long it was easy for the grain line to be slightly out of place. 

When cutting the back bodice pieces I found tracing the print onto the pattern paper helped me to ensure the back pieces were a neat mirror image. Once traced onto the pattern piece I was able to flip it and line up print before cutting. 

When I cut and made up the strap pieces I wasn’t happy with the print as the pattern on each strap was quite different. So I recut matching the pattern. When turning the straps the right way round I used a pencil to help. 

When sewing the facing to the front bodice I had some issues with the facing not sitting flat at the v neck. I tried snipping into the V which helped but didn’t solve the overall problem. So I unpicked and tried again, this time stitching from the V up to the shoulder. Pressing really well before and after stitching helped to make the neckline lay flat.

Snipping into the curves and cutting corners really helped all the pieces sit nicely on the body. 

I really enjoyed creating the elastic casing around the waist. It was easy to do and very effective. To thread the elastic through I used a safety pin. 

The belt loops were also a nice addition to the silk jumpsuit to hold the belt in place. These were hand sewn with black cotton to match the print. 

To hem the trouser legs of the printed silk jumpsuit, I measured and re measured to ensure the inside leg was going to be a good fit. I marked them with a heat erasable pen. 

Maybe you have been inspired to make your own silk jumpsuit for this summer? We have lots of prints to choose CLICK HERE to take a look! Or you may like to recreate your own Art Deco printed Jumpsuit HERE ia a link to the page on our website.

It you would like to know more about our collaboration with the V&A to develop this Art Deco silk print the do have a read of this BLOG.

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