PATTERN CUTTING THEORY
Learning Pattern Cutting – The Easier Way.
Learning how to cut patterns is normally a very slow process that requires dedication and aptitude. Some people are born with an ability for pattern cutting, while others have to work at it day in and day out.
It is not easy to learn pattern cutting, because, as much as it helps to have the aptitude, the skill takes time to learn. But because of this, just about anyone can become an accomplished pattern cutter with the right learning, and time.
Two Types Of Pattern Cutter.
In my experience there are two types of pattern cutter – There is the artistic pattern cutter who has an eye for what looks right. They like to drape on the stand to create their patterns, but have no patience for accuracy, or fine detail. They get bored with the details, and would rather someone else finish the pattern off with notches and linings etc. Often this type of pattern cutter is also a designer.
The other type of pattern cutter is more of a draftsman. They like to work using the flat pattern cutting method, using theory and logic. They like the small details, and making the linings and pocket patterns. They like the satisfaction of making the annotations, the linings, matching the notches and completing a complicated pattern in fine detail.
The Third Way.
After forty years of pattern cutting, I have developed a third way. After years struggling to learn how to cut patterns the “proper” way, I started combining flat pattern cutting with draping on the stand. Many professional pattern cutters find a similar way.
The first mistake a lot of inexperienced pattern cutters make is to believe that they need to follow some type of theory. They think they need to study a book to learn a method of drafting their blocks so that they can start making their patterns.
They refer to the same book to learn how to manipulate their pattern. But why do they need a series of equations to draft a block when they have a mannequin right in front of them, which is the very form they are trying to make the block for ?
When they finish their block they put it on the mannequin and wonder why it doesnt look right. They then take it off the mannequin and try to figure out the theory that will correct it. They look back to see where they made an error in their calculation. Was it A to B or F to L ?
Just like learning anything, the secret really is to learn the theory, then forget it. Yes, keep it in the back of your mind. You want to know what should happen, but the most important thing with pattern cutting is to see what is actually happening in front of your eyes – On the stand.
When I teach pattern cutting to students, I like to try to get them to develop this understanding from the outset. I like to get them to do stuff themselves, and figure out stuff themselves. If they ask how they should get rid of fullness in the back armhole, I will ask what is the stand telling them to do.
Although I may know from experience where the fullness of the shoulder originates from, the stand tells you exactly.
Online Pattern Cutting Classes.
In my online pattern cutting classes I like to use the same easy, logical methods.
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