If you’re like me and need to create extra room in your garments to accommodate the “girls,” perhaps you’ve also been successful at making that area large enough, but aren’t satisfied with some of the details, such as pointy darts, whose tips won’t blend out no matter what you do, large dart “flaps,” too much fabric hanging off your bust like a cloth over the edge of a table, etc.

Me-Made-May: Day 27
The dress with the evil pointy darts…

I’m not sure if there *is* a best method that works for every figure. I suspect our unique figures and unique sewing styles would make that an impossible dream. I started out using the method described in Fit for Real People, which I assumed was that magical best method (you know what they say about assuming). This method works, but it produces large darts, which are hard to make non-pointy. See the red dress above.

After reading a lot about dart sewing, I then tried dividing up the large vertical darts into two, which does indeed make it easier to sew darts that blend out nicely. I used this method for my floral dress.


I wish I had close-ups photos so you could see the darts better. Of course, the problem with this method is that you end up with multiple darts when perhaps you don’t want multiple darts. This can interrupt the flow of prints and make your garment look more complex when perhaps you wanted simple.

For my recent shirt, I decided to try Sandra Betzina’s method described in Fast Fit. I was reluctant to try this because I felt like I had already done a lot of hard work to make the FFRP method work for me and didn’t want to start over; however, I just decided to go for it with this last project and have to admit I’m thrilled with the results. It doesn’t affect the darts at all!

classic shirt 009

Now, my blouse isn’t perfect. There is a diagonal drag line from my bust to my hip, but I suspect that has more to do with the pattern than the alteration. A horizontal dart would have nipped that in nicely.

How do you make FBA’s? Any words of wisdom for someone who is still trying to get that elusive perfect fit?

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