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How to Tweak Sewing Patterns

How to take a basic bodice sewing pattern and tweak it for a different design.
Keyword: sewing, tutorial


  • Begin by raising the bust points on the bodice. Draw a straight line through the center of each dart. Where they intersect is the actual highest point of the bust. Re draw the dart legs so that they extend to this new higher point.
  • Cut out the new darts but leave a small hinge at the bust point.
  • Rotate the hinged piece upward to close the side seam dart and tape.
  • Draw a straight line from the tip of the dart to the armhole. Cut the line but leave a hinge at the bust point.
  • Rotate the hinged piece downward to close the waist dart and tape.
  • Use a soft tape measure to measure from your waist to under your bust where you want the yoke to start.
  • Measure from the waist stitching line on the pattern the same amount you did on yourself and draw a smooth line across the pattern at that point. Make sure the first 1/4″ of the line from the center front of the pattern is perpendicular to the center front.
  • Cut through the line to create the new bodice pattern and lower yoke pattern.
  • Rotate the hinged piece upward to close the armhole dart and tape.
  • Lower the dart the same amount you raised it in step 1 and redraw the dart legs to the lower point.
  • Trace the new pattern pieces and add seam allowances to both the bodice and yoke where they were cut.
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