Pattern cutting and design 5
Tools and equipment for making patterns 8
PART ONE: CLASSIC FORM CUTTING
(Cutting to create shape for the female figure)
2 From block to pattern 31
3 Basic adaptations of the bodice blocks 37
4 Sleeve adaptations 49
5 Constructing collars 69
6 The basic fitted skirt block and adaptations 79
7 Fitted trouser blocks and adaptations 99
8 Complex adaptations of the bodice blocks: dresses, jackets, coats 109
PART TWO: FLAT CUTTING
(Cutting flat shapes for casual and jersey garments)
10 Basic and easy fitting garments (jersey and knitted fabrics) 149
11 Close fitting garments (stretch and jersey fabrics) 163
PART THREE: SIZE AND FIT
13 Drafting blocks and fitting for individual figures 177
PART FOUR: COMPUTER AIDED DESIGN (CAD)
Appendix: Aliquot parts 212
Chapter index 213
Revised edition 2008 This fifth edition of the original book remains true to its original concept, which offered a range of good basic blocks, an introduction to the basic principles of pattern cutting and gave a few examples of their application into garments. The principal aim was to give students confidence in their ability to develop a unique style of pattern cutting and to offer tutors a starting point from which they could extend their students’ knowledge.
The new inclusions offered in the 2004 edition remain. These responded to the way fabrics and fashion have changed the cut and sizing of garments in different manufacturing processes. The great expansion of casual wear, in jersey or stretch fabrics, has led to the expansion of fl at cutting with no darting to create the shape. The 2004 edition devoted a whole section to this type of cutting and the section has been extended in this edition. However, students have to understand how to create shape through cutting alone, in fact, form cutting, and therefore the first section of the book still covers this technique. The major difference in this new edition is the introduction of colour. This will help students to recognize the different coded sections in the book. The addition of colour offers a major improvement to the updated chapter on computer-aided design (CAD). This now offers to fi rst year design and clothing students a good introduction to the technology.
The size charts have been revised in order to respond to changes in body sizing, co-ordination with European size charts and to the ways that clothes are marketed to different sectors of the population. As many of the stores selling High-street fashion are attracting younger ‘early teen’ customers, the size chart for this market sector has been extended down to a size 6.
The book remains written for beginners, students who are starting practical pattern cutting as part of fashion degree or diploma courses or for students in upper schools who are studying advanced dress and textile subjects. Chapter 13 deals specifically with drafting the block for individual figures. This will be useful for women who make clothes for themselves, in order to create and develop their own individual style, or women who find mass produced clothes an uneasy fit.
Some garment patterns, particularly in couture design, are constructed by draping on the dress stand. However, pattern cutting from blocks or adaptation of existing patterns is now widely used by the dress trade because of its accuracy of sizing and the speed with which ranges can be developed. Pattern cutting by this method is a means of achieving a shape around the body so that, although the body and therefore the body blocks remain constant, there is no limit to the ideas that can be followed through into workable designs. However, the designer must always be conscious that the body is a form. This can be difficult when one has to relate flat pieces of paper to a design that is basically sculptural when it is completed. In addition, the form will move and this must be exploited in the cut of the garment. A moving shape is more visually exciting than a still form, but there are practical problems to be considered in allowing for this movement. The system of pattern cutting offered in this book attempts to make the student more fully aware of designing round the figure rather than seeing it as a body that possesses only a front view.
Pattern cutting should be used in conjunction with a dress stand. This means that as the design evolves, proportion and line can be checked and corrected. Pattern cutting can achieve a shape quickly, but more complicated styles should be made up into a muslin or calico toile so that the result can be assessed on a form or a moving figure.