Where do I start? How do I learn patternmaking?

This website has the information you need to start learning to make your own patterns.  If you are a complete beginner, I recommend you work through this list:
  • Read the Introduction to Patternmaking pages (Principles Menu).
  • Read the introductory pages to Manipulating Darts (Principles Menu)
  • Download the Third Scale Blocks (Blocks menu).
  • Practice manipulating darts, working through the examples given in the Manipulating Darts menus (under Principles of Patternmaking).
  • Read through the Contouring section of the Principles menu.
  • Read the page on Added Fullness in the Principles menu.
  • Using your Third Scale Blocks, follow along with a few patterns, making sure you first read the Plan of Action. At first you may have to follow step-by-step, after a while you should be able to make the pattern on your own, just referring to the instructions if you get stuck, or to check something.
  • Come up with your own designs, and try to create them (still using Third Scale Blocks) using the principles covered and referring to the Garment Elements menu for creating collars, sleeves, etc.  See where your gaps in knowledge are, and work on those.
  • Create your own blocks; either to fit, or to standard measurements.
  • Start using full size blocks to make your own patterns.

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3 Responses

  1. I have been wanting to make my own patterns for so long, I have tried several correspondence type courses and they did not work out very well at all. I stumbled across your website and was blown away by it. Thank you so very much for sharing your knowledge. I hope to put this knowledge to good use and start making my own patterns that will fit me. Maria, you have given me the confidence to give this ago.I have watched and will re-watch your videos as well.

  2. Hi Deanna,

    Welcome, and thanks for leaving a comment. I will be trying hard to post more videos this year; probably revisiting some key theory in the videos. (Information that is already on my website, but in my video format with more slides, and I can go into more explanations).

    It certainly hasn’t been easy or quick process for me learn to draft my own patterns, but so worth it! I still get an immense amount of pleasure every time I put on a dress or top that fits correctly around the armhole (and doesn’t pull across the bust, or pull across the shoulders, or pull back… etc.etc.)

    Getting the correct measurements is the hardest part, and I think this is where most people fall down. I do want to make a real-life-person video on taking measurement… It’s on my list of things to do….. (Along with a million other things)

    Cheers and good luck

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