The first thing I decided was to forego the shoulder pads. Even though my shoulders are narrow, they are quite square and the shoulder pads made them look a bit knobbly. Here are a couple of pictures of the unfitted toile.
The first obvious problem is at the back waist. The instructions for the block I used said to lower the centre back waist – should not have done that! A quick horizontal tuck from side seam to side seam sorted it out though.
Next it was a bit tight across the top of my shoulder. We opened the seam a little right on the peak (?). I only need to add about 1cm, and I’ll only add it to the front sleeve and taper it off down towards the wrist. This should help the seam to run in a better place down the top of my arm.
Under the arm was pretty good. I’ll take a bit of the body gusset and add it to the sleeve gusset to make the seam hit a better place (you can just feel where it should sit on your body). While I’m at it I’ll slightly adjust the princess seam on the front to be a bit more pleasing.
The only slightly puzzling problem is a bit of ‘puffiness’ in the front underarm region, and the same thing but a bit less of it on the back. I’m not exactly sure what to do here but we’ve drawn in what needs to be removed and I’ll have a look at it when it’s flat. Sarah suggested, and I tend to agree, that I just need to lower the angle of the sleeve relative to the body. This will get rid of the fullness and the gusset has worked well enough that I shouldn’t lose too much mobility – it’s not as if I go around sticking my arms out that often anyway! Also, the front and back sleeve are not at exactly the same angle - I'm not quite sure how that happened! I'll correct that while I'm at it too.
Before altering the collar looks a bit flat and floppy... After re- pinning the front pleat and pinching out some of the fullness on the outer edge I think it's quite acceptable.
I was really hoping not to have to do another toile, but the suiting I am using is sold out so if I mess up I can’t get any more. On the other hand, time is short so I’ll have to consider my options carefully. I know the skirt will be fine so now I’m just itching to get on with it!