Updated: Jul 23
A continuation of the discussion on Bunka style basic blocks. This time, we look at a simpler method of drafting.
Basic Bodice Block (Missy)
This block is actually not discussed in the Bunka Fashion Series textbook. However, many Japanese drafting books and magazines that uses the Bunka style blocks (for example, Mrs Stylebook), also provide instructions for this simpler block. This block is referred to as the Bunka style Missy bodice blocks. This block can be a great alternative to the original blocks, especially if you are developing easy-fitting tops and blouses.
We will use the same reference body measurements in Part 1 to draft this block.
Bust Circumference = 83cm
Waist Circumference = 64cm
Centre Back Length = 38cm
For step-by-step video demonstration, click here.
Bodice Block for Missy Bodice Block
This block is definitely quicker to draft compared to the original one. There is no armhole dart or waist dart to contend with, so it is a good block to go to when you want to draft an easy-fitting blouse quickly.
As an illustration, for size 9 using the reference body measurements, the total waist ease in the Missy block is 29cm, as compared to the total waist ease in the Original block (which is 6cm at the smallest, if all the darts a-f are used).
Lastly, the front and back shoulder lengths are different in this block. Hence, easing of the front shoulder length into the back is needed during garment construction. Alternatively, the shoulder lengths have to be adjusted during pattern development to match.
The front and back armhole measurements from the bodice block are required to draft the sleeve block. This block is less precise, in that the sleeve cap height is not fixed by the front and back armhole heights of the bodice block. It can actually vary based on the garment styles and designer's discretion.
For demonstration, we will use a sleeve cap height of 14cm.
For step-by-step demonstration, click here.
Sleeve Block for Missy Bodice Block
We find this sleeve block is slightly easier to draft compared to the one we showed in Part 1. This is mainly due to the fact that the sleeve cap height does not need to be determined from the back and front armhole heights of the bodice blocks. As this sleeve block is to complement the Missy bodice block, it is meant to be more loose fitting, usually with relaxed styles adopting lowered armholes.
There are many different methods available to draft the basic bodice blocks and the Bunka method is just one of them. From our experience, there is no right or wrong way to draft, just a better or easier way. And that really depends on what you have in mind as the end goal. Start with a block that uses standard sizings close to your body measurements. It would take less time and effort to adjust it to fit you subsequently. Then it's a matter of trading effort for convenience. Would a simpler block work if you don't want to put in so much effort to create a complex block? Maybe, especially so if the ultimate design of your blouse is not form-fitting and quite forgiving in fit.
Hope we ignite your passion to go try the different drafting methods and we believe you will come to find one that you love best. After all, fashion making is a craft that only gets better with hands-on experience.