Third theory- Modified Circle Plan-Shoulder Method
This method is one of my own devising, which uses modern pattern making theory to blend the first and second methods. In this method you again start from a base pattern that fits your shoulders and neckline reasonably well (a sloper of course, is perfect). Trace it onto some scrap paper. Draw lines on this tracing approximately parallel to the center front/back about one inch apart, starting about an inch along the shoulder line. Draw a line perpendicular to the center front that runs across all your lines. This is a balance line used for measuring later. Cut up from the bottom of the pattern along your lines towards and right up to, but NOT THROUGH the shoulder line. On top of a new piece of paper, align the center front with the edge of the paper and tape it down. Spread the pattern pieces out over the new sheet of paper (looks a bit like spreading your fingers) so that they have an equal distance between each of them (Measure along the balance line so that you know that you are measuring in the same place each time). You will notice that the shoulder line is no longer straight, but curved as you open all the pieces.
Comments on this method:
This gives you the same sort of hang that the second method achieves, but it also gives you a neckline seam.
These pattern pieces can become quite wide, so fabric might need to be pieced for longer versions.
Requires wide cloths that are not directionally patterned (including napped fabrics and stripes)