There has been so much love for Elliot since release and I am swooning over all your makes! One thing I have noticed is a lot of sizing questions. Sizing for rompers can be difficult since there are so many factors to consider. There is rarely ever one “right” way to adjust for your trunk length that is going to be standard across all garments. I will go over some of the things to consider and some tips so that you can feel more confident making the grading decisions that are right for you!
During testing, we found that grading by girth seemed to work fine for babies and kids but wasn’t working out so well for adults. Here we will go over how to blend between sizes (with those fun pockets) and how to adjust your length. After you decide on pattern adjustments, it’s super important to make a pattern muslin. Muslins are test garments, usually made in a fabric that is lower cost/quality to ensure that your garment fits correctly before cutting into the good stuff! I always suggest making a muslin for any new pattern you’re trying out. Let’s get started with sizing!
How to Select a Size
On page 7 of the tutorial, you will notice a measurement guide like the one below. For the adults, we will not be using girth as the main factor in determining length. We will go over how to adjust for length later but let’s first focus on blending the sizes between the bust, waist, & hip measurements.
Start by taking the bust, waist, & hip measurement. These will sometimes fall into different sizes. Write down your sizes and select those layers when printing. Let’s take a look at how to blend between sizes below.
Size Blending Instructions
Before blending your pattern, here are some things to consider.
- The top of this pattern is not especially fitted so it is up to you whether or not you choose to grade for the chest/bust.
- The armscye will hit at the waistline so grading for the waist should start there.
- Where you fall within the size range can help you determine if you need to grade. If your hip is 46″, you will measure into the very top of the XL and the bottom of the XXL. Going with the XXL will give you more ease through the hip and you will have less with the size XL.
For the example below we will be grading from a larger waist to a smaller hip. Use this same method for all types of size blending.
Step 1: Print all sizes that you measure into. If you are adding the slant pockets, do not cut out your main bodice pieces yet. Grade between the correct sizes using smooth curves. You will repeat this for both the front and back pieces as shown in red.
Step 2: For the back bodice piece, trace all around as shown in red. For the front bodice, overlap the pocket bag and pocket facing onto your front bodice.
Step 3: Add to the bodice, pocket facing, and pocket bag to match the blending that you did in Step 1 as shown in red. Trace around each new piece.
Now that we have covered blending between sizes, let’s talk about adding length.
Knowing How & When to Adjust for Length
Knowing how, when, and where to adjust length can be tricky and there is no cut and dry method that will work the same for every body. Before we can start adjusting, we have to first decide if it’s necessary. When adjusting for kids and babies, using the girth measurement is almost always sufficient and a good indicator of when you need to add length to the body of your romper.
For adults, knowing when to lengthen can get a little trickier. Body proportion and measurements vary more in adult bodies so there are more factors to consider when performing length adjustments. Let’s take a look at a few 👇
- Height. PSCo patterns are drafted for a height of 5’5″ to 5’7″. If you are shorter or taller, you are more likely to need a length adjustment. However, even if you are in the height range we draft for, you may still need to add or remove length depending on your body proportion.
- Proportion. Your body proportion refers to the way your height is distributed between your upper body (trunk) and lower body (legs). You may need to adjust for one or both of these areas.
- Where you fall within your size range. If you are at the top of your size range, your crotch will sit higher than if you are on the lower end. Your horizontal girth (bust, waist, hip) can affect affect the length of your garment when it’s on the body.
- Fabric. Fabric choice will always affect the fit of your final garment. Elliot requires 50% four way stretch. The more vertical stretch your fabric has, the lower the crotch will sit without adjustment. Rompers made from fabrics like bamboo, rayon spandex, double brushed poly, etc., will sit lower because the weight of the fabric will cause it to stretch vertically (especially the straps). If you use a more stable knit that still meets the stretch requirement, like a french terry or cotton lycra, you won’t have to worry about excess vertical stretching.
If you think you need to add length, start by checking the finished measurement chart in your tutorial on page 8. This will give you the finished measurement from the shoulder to the crotch when the romper is laying flat. You can compare this to your own trunk height by measuring from the top of your shoulder to your crotch. There is vertical wearing ease built into the pattern (around 2-3″ depending on size) so it is intended to sit slightly below the crotch.
In the adults pattern we have also listed the waist to hip measurement. The armscye sits at the waist so the waist to hip refers to the distance from the bottom of the scye to the full hip on your pattern. When measuring your waist to hip, this will let you know if you need to add length.
Another way you can help determine your length adjustment is to hold the pattern piece up to your body. Align the armscye with your waistline and see if the crotch sits comfortably between your legs- if not you may need to add length. If it sits too low, you may need to remove length.
Ok, so you’re adding length, but where?
How to Add Length
Whether or not you are adding length by grading for girth (kids and babies) or adding length based on proportion for adults, you will follow these steps below 👇
Step 1: For Kids and Baby, print the bodice that matched the size that you need and the length/girth. Overlap the pocket bag and facing pieces and pin/tape in place. Split the pattern into 2-3 sections. If you are only going up a size in girth, you can add length to the bottom 2 sections only. If you are adding more length, you can use all three.
Step 2: Slash across and spread until the bodice height matches the girth you need. Make sure that you are not adding too much length above the pocket line or your pocket will be too low. You should adjust the back bodice using the same method as the front. For adults, you will take the amount of length you need to add and divide that between your sections.
Step 3: Trace around your new pieces.
How to Remove Length
Removing length is done in relatively the same manner as adding it but instead of spreading our pieces apart, we overlap them.
Step 1: Overlap the pocket bag and facing pieces and pin/tape in place. Add 1-3 lines above and below the pocket line. The more length you are removing, the more areas you should remove length from. This helps the proportion stay more consistent. However, if you are only removing an inch, there is no need to remove 1/3″ from 3 places.
Step 2: Overlap your pieces and remove the desired amount of length. Remember that if you remove 2″, you are really removing 4″ by adjusting the front and back pieces.
Step 3: Trace off the new pieces as shown in red.
And that’s it, friends…
I hope this clarified things a little for y’all and I can’t wait to see all your fab Elliots!
If you need help sewing the binding, v-neck, or slant pockets, check our our video on YouTube! Check out the other videos on our channel for some Elliot pattern hacks 😉
Until next time 😘