Hello all, sorry for the delay in writing my head has been a bit dizzy and taking a while to settle down so I can focus on my work....
Anyway today has been much better so here I am, the class is a little behind in the men's wear my rationale when setting up the class was that each suit would have 2 people working on it for 27 classroom hours each totaling 54 "man" hours per suit. I felt this might be enough time but I was wrong a man's suit takes a very long time to make, there are many components to it and a very steep learning curve for both students and teacher :) Guess I'll know better for next time.....
The ladies are doing an excellent job, working well together to make sure the gentlemen end up with a great looking and fitting suit!
I hope most of the class was able to do the padstitching on the lapels, there is still the collar to padstitch and the sleeves to install and tailor as well. We still haven't even discussed the pants.... wait until the waistband has to be installed to hear the laughs! Today I installed the waistband on my husband's pants and it was a trip especially the hook and eye, it took me THREE tries to finally get it right! See even with plenty of experience there are still challenges so I laugh at myself and start again!
So Thursday's class was cancelled due to inclement weather. I have never been so relieved to cancel a class as this one, the ice storm was so bad even if the class had gone on it would have been a bust anyway because the power went out and stayed out for 24 hours! Today in the sunshine it looks like I live in a crystal kingdom! The trees are quite beautiful covered in ice they look crystallized.
The exam dates still stand so whomever is planning on writing during the 3 hours before class please come in at 3:00 pm on Monday. The rest of the class please show up on time to start working on the pockets as stated in the email I sent you and the blog posting prior to this one.
In the meantime have a Great Easter weekend!
Hello ladies I was happy to see most of the teams were on the same page! It took a lot longer to fit the bodies than anticipated so everyone is a little behind as a result. That's ok we will catch up if not there is always the option of adding some more classes, ideally whole days for the sewing are better because with only 3 hours it seems no sooner we sit down it's time to go.
Your job is to finish adding the front stay to the canvas and get it ready to sew on to the jacket. I know on the syllabus it says the models were supposed to come in for a fitting well that won't happen quite yet there is still much work to be done. So we are going to add the breast pocket in it's entirety to the jacket plus the welts on the jacket front. Please have your front lining and facing pieces ready to use so you can do those ones before you do the ones on the outside. Also bring extra scrap fabric to do a practice one even before you do the lining pockets! In the meantime at home you can practice the welts as shown in the book as a reminder of the process.
Keep up the good work!
So yesterday we went to the factory to trace the pattern pieces, fine tune the new sleeves etc.
By we I mean my top-notch, crack team of pattern drafters! There was Amy, Danielle, Meaghan and Kelli who worked very hard the whole day! There were a lot of pattern pieces to trace and mark on both sides; they were from a size 6 to 22 in regular fit with the lining, the same in tall fit, also with the lining PLUS a smaller assortment of sizes in short fit! Of course there were the sleeves which were done last, once I was finished fine tuning the pattern pieces for the regular fit. Whew! Team top-notch worked very diligently to complete the task in record time, the factory owner was duly impressed with the progress and professionalism. Kudos ladies!
My job was to take apart the samples, take into account the notch placement, check the length and make the individual adjustments on the paper. Now there were a few differences in how I work and how the factory workers work so we had to meld the methods hence the sample maker made samples jackets and I took them apart to copy what she did.
In fact there was a difference in how much ease is on the sleeve cap, I leave 4 cm they leave much less as there is no ease stitching on the sleeve cap to help with the installation. Every seam in a factory costs money so if there is a way of avoiding this, they will find it. With no ease stitching allowed the sleeve cap would have been too large for the armhole so the solution was to take the smaller sleeve size and add that to the larger body size, in other words the size 10 body got the size 8 sleeve, worked like a charm!
All in all we had a great day together and after all this work some of us went out to dinner and then for some R and D in Yorkdale at the more high end stores to see what the designers are up to. That's a story for another day.....
By the time we got home we were really, really tired and ready for bed!
Well I can tell you the men's wear has proven challenging to the class! So far the fit issues have put all teams behind the syllabus, but then again the syllabus is only a guide and not hard and fast rules. I would rather slow down a bit and have the students learn the material really well than rush through just to keep up to the syllabus. Students are getting ready to cut the fabric, some have already cut and are tailor tacking on the weekend! If necessary we will add some extra time to complete the suit for the students who wish to do so.
Exam dates have been set for the ladies, they have the criteria now it's a matter of getting down to business and writing. We are going to ship the exams to Italy for grading along with pix of garments students have created during the course of the program of both the inside and out of the garment. These exams have been 5 years in the making and I could not be more proud of these ladies!
That was intense! Everyone is working very hard at creating these men's suits, who knew there were so many components to the jacket when on the outside all one sees is the fabric! I asked the class if the level of difficulty is what they expected, some responded that it was, some are surprised by it, one smart one figured this was the last class for a reason so she is not surprised at all! What is surprising is the subtle differences in men's physique, not at all obvious like women's bodies. The biggest issue was the armhole, everyone had to enlarge it and enlarge the sleeves as well in the process. Fun times!
Below are the adjustments to the mock ups and the second fitting for the mock ups (if necessary). I tell the students not to be discouraged if the first adjustments don't quite work, it's cause and effect, sometimes a second and third mock up will have to be made in order to iron out all the bugs, so to speak...... We are working with fabrics that hang differently on bodies that stand differently, adding in ease of movement all the while fighting gravity, no small feat if you ask me!
Danielle and Judith – new jacket front was made and the following needs to be done; add to side, remove front dart, add to the centre front, take in slightly the alteration at shoulder, reverse sway back adjustment, let out at centre back between the shoulder blades, take in at waist to give a nice S curve, re-size the lapel
Pants – Judith made a new mock up and pants have been made smaller, they hang very well but have to be let out at centre back 2 cm. Crotch is too long making the rise too high. Cut down the waist and pleat the pants at the hip point to shrink the rise. Adding the waistband stabilizes the pants for a better hang
Linda and Tonia – taken in centre back on jacket, took in point C 2 cm at the front and 1.5 cm at the back. Linda drafted a new sleeve to reflect a larger armhole and to enlarge the bicep
Pants – enlarged the pleats, tapered the legs from knee down, added wedge at back to lengthen the crotch
This team is working on cutting the fabric
Amy and Meaghan – jacket fits well, needs to be taken in at point C to shrink the shoulder point, raise point C by 1 cm on front and back, enlarge the sleeve to accommodate the bicep
Pants -Taper the leg down to the hem, the rest fit very well
Denise and Kelli – jacket; shorten the dart on the front, re-do the sleeve, enlarge the armhole
Pants – enlarge the crotch on front, enlarge pleats add to hips
So I never had time to write about Thursday's class, here it is already Monday again!
Yesterday was a good day, it was Denise's birthday and we were all invited to celebrate this momentous occasion, some were not able to make it but it was nice that those who could come did!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY DENISE!!
Back to tonight's class, students will be cutting fabric, lining, canvas etc getting ready to start the padstitching on the jacket next week. The motto is MEASURE TWICE; CUT ONCE! Let's see how this goes, keep you posted!
Hello folks so men's wear is more involved than meets the eye isn't it!
Last class students started by taking measurements and starting the drafts, last night the class continued with the draft but because of the many components the drafts were not completed so students will continue on Thursday with the drafts and cut and sew the mock up so the models can come in towards the end of the class for a fitting. This is probably going to be the most exciting class for these students to see the drafts come to life!
I would like the class to try and check the pattern pieces before cutting the mock ups to be sure they are correct. By this time you should have the master pattern for both the jacket and the pants completed, try to have the pattern pieces for the fabric already traced and ready to cut on Thursday. Once the mock up is done the class can continue with tracing the rest of the pattern pieces before the gentlemen arrive for their fittings.
I am positive the suits that will be completed will be outstanding!
Hello all and welcome to the first class of the men's wear section! Last night was a real eye opener for the students, they even learned a bunch of new terminology in both Italian and English!
There are going to be 4 (5 counting my husband who had to model his jacket last night) very happy gentlemen at the end of this section they will be the lucky recipients of a brand new, bespoke tailored suit complete with an extra pair of pants - one flat front and one with pleated front!
Next week the class will continue with the draft and have a mock up ready for the fitting in class 3 either at the beginning of class or at the end of the class but we will definitely be cutting fabric and lining by class 4.
The pleated pants are the ones that will be created in class because it`s a new skill that needs to be learned, the flat front pants are like any other pants you have created in the past so they can be created at home even after the class if necessary. The pants will have ½ lining on the front only (to the knee).
Here is your shopping list:
So now I have to finish my husband's pants so he can model the whole suit, better get to work!
Have a great day, can't tell you how proud I am of this talented group of ladies!
Sure it's been great driving so far this winter, the one time that I decided to wait for the better weather to start classes! What happens, we get the worst storm of the winter so far on Monday, Tuesday and extended into Wednesday! GRRRRR!
So the first class had to be cancelled due to the poor driving/visibility conditions! Sorry no updates on the class progress yet.
On the bright side I'm almost finished my husband's jacket and today's trip to Toronto has been cancelled as well so I will have time to work on both the jacket and pants, guess there is an upside after all......
I can tell you that I never imagined getting so much personal satisfaction out of making a men's suit, it is a work of art the tailors of the past were true artisans and artists to come up with the cut and all the structure that makes the jacket hang so perfectly. I am very happy to be sharing this knowledge with my classes.
Starting September 2016 I am going to have a specialized men's wear program, stay tuned for details!
Maria Calautti, "Jack of all trades"