Well, she’s gone through puberty rather rapidly:
That’s kinda balanced out those hips a bit, but her shape does look rather ridiculous! (Well, I suppose, my shape does look rather ridiculous!)
I’m quite happy with her shape and size now, though I probably need to put a little padding on the hips (they’re the right size, but mine aren’t as smooth – they need to start sticking out a bit higher up) – at the moment it doesn’t matter too much as my current plans are for blouses and full-skirted dresses.
Anyway, working with Dolly has taught me a few things, so here’s how I did it:
1) The form doesn’t come with much in the way of instructions for adjustment, by chance, I checked the Adjustoform website – that has the information we need to adjust our form!
2) The Diana has numbered dials that are supposed to show the circumference in centimetres. They’re not entirely accurate, so don’t rely on them! I measured me, I measured Dolly, I adjusted, I re-measured Dolly, I checked my measurements, I adjusted again, I measured again … and so on until I was happy.
3) That chest area. Yeah, so. I thought it wouldn’t work, but I wanted to check what the under-bust measurement would be if the full-bust measurement was correct – I was right, the under-bust was far too big. I think that, like most patterns, dress forms tend to be made to a B cup. I wasn’t made to a B cup!
The solution … I adjusted Dolly so the under-bust measurement matched mine. I then measured from the base of my neck at the front (roughly at the hollow between the collarbone) to the botton of my bra band (centre front) to check where that should sit and marked that measurement on Dolly with a pin. When I put the bra on Dolly, I made sure it lined up with that pin.
Then I got out the stuffing! This was the filling of an old pillow that had already been pulled apart. Instead of pulling out a single wad, I took out small handfuls at a time and gradually built up the padding inside the bra, shaping it and trying to make it a smooth, realistic shape all the time, until it felt about full. This essentially means groping the filled bra repeatedly! Feel free to film this stage and watch it any time you need a laugh. I measured Dolly’s assets and filled a bit more, measured and filled until she was just right.
Of course, the flaw with this way of working is that you end up with boobs that only go as far as the top of the bra cup – and boobs don’t tend to do that! It’s a good idea to check the high bust measurement in comparison with your own. With the tape measure taught across the bra straps, Dolly’s is the same as mine, but there is a gap between the tape and her body. I think a temporary solution could be to put a layer (or two) of batting across the upper chest, above the bra cups, which could be tucked under the bra straps.
I’m losing weight at the moment (slowly and steadily, no radical transformations here!), but when I’m fitting back into my old jeans (again, just one size down, nothing radical!), I’m going to try to make a cover for Dolly. The Party Dress has a guide to draping a simple body block, so I’m going to grab some calico, a friend, a long zip and some padding and get personalising Dolly. In the meantime, though, she’ll be fine as she is.
And the first bit of fitting will be …