Shoulder pads 4 – semi-traditional making

In part 1 we have learned about the relationship of shell fabric pattern and the design of the according shoulder pad.

In part 2 we decided for the various components.

In part 3 and following parts we want to analyse some examples to see how high the variances are and how important it is to know what you want to make with these. Again, there is no right or wrong, but a profound understanding needed of the particular case and of course, experience too.

part 4:

This example here is a quite advanced one for a regular shoulder in a semi-traditional or traditional manufacturing system. In further articles I will explain more about the three different methods of suit manufacturing – traditional, semi-traditional and fused manufacturing.

The first one you may notice are the basting lines which this time end at the very edge of the armhole, this because the Shoulderpad is attached to the Canvas, but not to the fabric.  Therefore the fabric sleeve can be attached without interference from the reinforcements.

Also what you see is the flat lock stitch on the shoulder line, that because of a slightly curved shoulder from the fabric pattern.


The Cover is extremely soft and so there is no surprise that the inner construction give the support.  This time with two layers of canvas, a soft unwashed cotton and an inner felt cover it is well set up.

IMG_2104          IMG_2105

Again, have a closer look to the grain line of the canvases, they support the shoulder in various directions. Also interesting and very important is the size of the different pieces. You should try to avoid to have two edges directly lying on top of each other. Much better and smoother is the way you see below with downsizing steps of min. 5 mm for each layer.

IMG_2107           IMG_2108

IMG_2109            IMG_2110

A third detail is very interesting here: the cotton insert. It is “sprayed” and therefore has ultra thin edges. Only a few companies do that. It has a lot to do with the overall construction to feel this or not. I cannot say which I like better – the “sprayed” one or the “stapled” one of the example before. This is a personal thing and I have good experience with both methods.

IMG_2111               IMG_2112

Summarising the above details, this shoulderpad is a very advanced mixture of super soft and supportive material at the same time. You will only use it when you have a regular shoulder and still want to achieve a dynamic and soft approach. It is not easy to work with but has an unbeatable softness and will stay in this shape forever.

more to come in the near future…

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