Bellini Sewalong: Guest post on grading up from Another Little Crafty Creation! September 12 2014

Today we have a guest post from Alison over at Another Little Crafty Creation. Alison is going to show us how she graded up her Bellini blouse beyond the size range shown in the size chart.

You can see Alison's beautiful Bellini blouse with lace collar (and Champagne skirt!) here.

Take it away, Alison!


You'll need: Printed pattern, measurements, ruler/curves, pens/pencils, tissue paper.

First we need to work out the differences between sizes and work out what measurements would be for other sizes. The Bellini blouse goes up by 5cm for each size, so it is easy to keep adding 5cm to each measurement. Do this for the body measurements and finished garment measurements so you can see what size you want to make. The Bellini blouse is designed to be loose fitting, and I knew a slimmer fit would be more flattering for me. I looked at my high bust measurement and decided to grade up 2 sizes (from 18 to 22) then do a FBA.

First you need to trace the largest size, including all the markings and notches. Make sure you do this really accurately.

Place the line you have just traced on a smaller size and retrace the largest size.

I wanted to grade up by 2 sizes (from 18 to 22) so I placed the traced line (green) on the size 14 line and traced over the size 18 line (in pink). If you wanted to go up to a size 26 you would place your original line on the size 10 lines.

Start grading up in the corners and where lines intersect or meet. Make sure that your original line is always on the smaller pattern lines.

In some places your new line won’t always be on the outside. Where this happens (eg. the armhole) trace the corners/intersections and use a French curve to connect the lines and draw in a new curve, matching the existing shape as much as possible. Do this in pencil so you can easily change it to get the best line!

Check your new pattern piece “makes sense.” Compare your new traced piece to the original, looking at where the sizes differ and are the same. Make sure you have all the pattern information and markings clearly labelled.

Cut out along the new lines and start sewing! (As with any new pattern, you may want to make a toile first).


Thank you so much, Alison!

Please leave any grading questions for Alison and me in the comments.