Q & A
Q. Do you plan to offer a larger size range?
A. Vesta Patterns run small, and this is an intentional part of the design. One of the reasons I began sewing is that the smallest ready-to-wear sizes were often still too big in the bust (and way too small in the hips!), and sewing patterns that use that same ready-to-wear size chart have the same issues. I wanted to create small and extra-small sizes that truly felt, well, small, while also representing a range of different cup sizes and body shapes instead of just one.
As a result, the upper range of the sizes is limited, because there are only so many times a pattern can be increased or decreased in size before it needs to be recreated entirely to ensure its quality.
If your measurements do exceed the upper size range, there is a silver lining: Many patterns intended for larger sizes often have extremely large shoulders that have not been scaled proportionally to how the human body actually grows. So even if you need to make some adjustments, you may find that you can get a better fit by starting with a Vesta pattern that comes close to your largest measurement, because the shoulders (perhaps the trickiest part of any garment) will be a more appropriate size and fit.
Q. Do have a printed version of the Fable dress for wholesale?
A. Yes. They are printed in color on two sheets of 36 x 48" architectural paper and hand-folded to fit into an 8.5 x 9.25" crystal-clear bag with a hang tab. The instructions are printed on the same quality French paper stock as the physical Grail patterns. These are a special order, so please contact me directly if you're looking for printed Fables!
Questions about the Fable dress:
Q. What's the difference between the shapes?
A. The main difference is cup size. The "E" body shape has a 2.5" (6.4 cm) difference between the full bust and underbust measurements, and is suited for a B or C cup in U.S. sizing.
The "A" body shape has a 3.5" (9 cm) difference between the full bust and underbust measurements, which translates to a C or D cup.
The "S" body shape has a 5.5" (14 cm) difference and is intended for D or DD cup sizes.
For extra help with the Fable dress, check out Bethany Barrett's two-part walkthrough on her blog, Costumes and Fashion.
Questions about the Grail:
Q. Where can I find merino wool jersey?
A. My favorite source for merino fabric is The Fabric Store.
Q. I'm new to buying knit fabric. What does "moderate stretch" and "good recovery" mean?
A. Moderate stretch fabric can easily stretch to an additional 25% of its length, and "good recovery" means that the fabric will readily return to its original length instead of permanently stretching out or sagging. Here's a handy printable stretch guide that you can bring with you when buying fabric. Make sure to print it scaled to 100%.
Q. I'm not sure which body shape to choose because my measurements (32.5-26-35" or 83-66-89 cm) are on the fence. Should I choose the E shape or the S shape?
A. Let your cup size be the tiebreaker. You'll need to take one more measurement – your underbust measurement, right over the bra band. Round this measurement up to the nearest whole, even number, and that's your band size. Compare your band size to your full bust measurement to determine an accurate cup size. If you're an A, B, or C cup (that is, 1-3" difference between your full bust and band size measurements), go for the E shape. If you're a D-DD+ cup, the S shape was made for you.
Example: If your underbust is 29" and your full bust measurement is 33", your bra band size is 30" and your cup size is C. Some fitting guides will tell you to add four inches to your underbust measurement, but this results in an unsupportive bra and a band that stretches out long before its time. For instance, if you've been wearing a 32B bra and find that the band is too large or stretches out quickly, your true size may actually be 30C or 30D.