Marfy sewing patterns have a very low profile in the sewing blogisphere, at least among the blogs and sites I visit. My interest in them was sparked last year when someone at a sewing group asked me if I had made one and was surprised that I had not. A selection of them are sold on the Vogue patterns website so I kept checking to see if there was one I might try. The actual Marfy website has their full offering, but in both cases they provide illustrations only, with no technical drawings. It took me while to choose one for a lot of reasons but I finally put in my order for model F2422. If you look at this link on that site you can see the size chart below the illustration.
The next decision was the size. Their patterns come in specific individual sizes so I ordered a size 42, described as B 34.5". W 27" H 36" which is close to a Vogue pattern 12 that I always start with.
Here is my pattern as received. The outer envelope is about 6" x 9" and the pattern pieces are all folded up as shown here. It seemed so minimalist as compared to the usual Vogue pattern stuffed with tissue and instructions. Not necessarily a plus or minus, just interesting.
It actually took me a while to figure out what all the pieces were, partly due to the very limited labeling and partly because there were a lot of pieces that were almost the same shape. The pieces on the right are the mirror images of the neckline pieces, labeled as facings, and then a hem facing, which kind of puzzled me and I didn't use.
Abandoning my "I rarely make muslins" philosophy I figured it was a necessity here, particularly since I was trying a new pattern company and had no idea about their fit. I knew it would be too small in the waist and hip so in my lazy late night haze I decided to add 1 inch to the center front and center back seam. I figured that would give me the bit of extra room needed which turned out to be a bad idea.
Here is the first muslin, shown on a dress form that is adjusted to be pretty close to my measurements.
Notable problems are the bust area is too big, there is gaping across the front and back border pieces, not enough shaping at the waist and too tight in the hips (which I anticipated) and the whole thing is a bit boxy for my taste.
I have stated before that fit is the final frontier in home sewing, the topic where I see the most angst-ridden comments or painful confessions so here we go with all the gory details of fitting this dress. And speaking of gory, I have become quite a slasher lately - not anything too grisly, just slashing away on test versions of things to release the fabric and see what adjustments are needed. So I will show you the result of my slashing here, on the dress form. Nobody needs to see this on the live model - me, eek! But even my slim hipped dressform needed a bit more space for her backside :). By slashing I could see how much extra was needed and where.
Once I made this up I had a better feel for their shaping, ease and other features so I was able to modify the pattern, sew a second muslin, do a few adjustments on that and get the fit accomplished. I will show all those details in the next post.
Seeing the backside on this muslin combined with the fact that Marfy is an Italian pattern company reminded me of a shopping day I had in Italy. I was buying a wool suit, the jacket fit perfectly but the pants were a touch snug. The very snooty sales girl looked me up and down and then pointing to my backside said "La problema é la" which I bet I don't even need to translate. Despite her I found a gorgeous charcoal grey suit with a great fit which I wore endlessly and always looked good. Made in Italy - the real thing, is certainly worth it if you can find something in your budget. Shoes, gloves, scarves, sweaters, lingerie, handbags - those are the items I always shop for when in Rome :) No plans to travel there soon but a girl can dream, right?
Late September in northern California - a few swirling leaves, slight chill at night but shorts and a tee weather today. I hope it holds up so I can wear my summer dresses a few more times before a jacket is needed. Still picking plenty of Sun Sugar tomatoes and thinking of planting some lettuce for a fall crop.
Did I show you this one? I am crazy for these teddy bear sunflowers, only about 18" tall but so cute.
Happy sewing, Beth