Mar 28, 2022     GKFTII


Pattern is a wrapping of the human body in fabric in different interesting and innovative designs. It is the blue print or map of the garment.

Pattern making is a subject that opens several doors for creating infinite number styles by designers. Mastering the art of pattern making gives a designers an opportunity to be a leader in his field. Knowledge of pattern making distinguishes an amateur from master of the field.

The understanding of pattern making is fundamental to the work of designer in fashion industry. Pattern making is an activity by which design is transformed from a drawing stage to an actual physical piece. A pattern maker interprets the design sketch by drafting it through pattern pieces.

Pattern making is an art. It is the art of manipulating and shaping a flat piece of fabric to conform to one or more curves of the human figure.

It is a bridge function between design and production. A sketch can be turned into a garment via a pattern which interprets the design in the form of the garment components.

A pattern is flat while the body is not. The body has height, width and depth. Within this roughly cylindrical frame work there are a series of secondary curves and bulges, which are concern to the pattern making. They convert the flat piece of cloth into a three dimensional form, which fits the bulges of the body.

Human form is a compound of complex geometric shapes and presents problems in pattern construction. The accuracy of any pattern making method depends largely on relevant and correct measurements.

Pattern making is a highly skilled technique which calls for technical ability, sensitivity for design interpretation and practical understanding of garment construction.

It is one of the most important parts of garment manufacturing industry.

Pattern is a hard paper which is made by following each individual component for a style of garment.

Pattern is a template from which the parts of a garment are traced onto fabric before being cut out and assembled.

Pattern making covers the principles of construction and techniques in awider sense rather than style details in a narrow sense.

Pattern making can be divided in two parts namely measuring correctly and knowledge of technique devised to include necessary seam allowances. Measuring the human body is the precursor to developing garments to fit the body.

Pattern for a garment is the blue print on the basis of which the fabric is cut and the same is achieved by two methods:

  1. Drafting
  2. Draping
  3. Drafting: Pattern drafting is defined as a technique or method of drawing patterns on brown paper with accuracy and precision, based on the body measurements or standard measurement chart. This is an efficient and economical method and can be manipulated to create the pattern for different styles by a technique known as Flat Pattern designing.

Flat pattern techniques is a method of manipulating the pattern while the pattern is laid flat on the table. Pattern manipulation is a common word applied to the act of slashing and spreading or pivoting a pattern section to alter its original shape.

Darts play an important role in the flat pattern technique.

The darts can be stitched to any location around the pattern’s outline from the pivot point without affecting the size and fit of the garment. There are two methods of flat pattern technique which are as follows:

  1. Pivot method:  Darts can be moved from one point to another.
  2. Slash and Spread method: Darts are shifted by cutting and spreading the pattern.

Principles of Pattern Making:

Pattern drafting can be carried out on an ordinary brown sheet paper which is not too thin. To achieve an accurate and precise pattern draft, use of appropriate tools should be practiced.

Types of Paper Patterns:

  1. Standardized Paper Pattern: Paper pattern prepared using standardized body measurements are standardized paper patterns.
  2. Individual Paper Pattern: The measurement of a particular person is taken and pattern is prepared using ones individual measurements.

The pattern prepared for a particular person will not suit other persons. These are usually done at home and at some tailoring shops.

  1. Block Paper Pattern:  These are made with standard sizes with thick cardboard. These are mostly used in the garment industry. The garment made out of these block patterns will fit those who have measurements equal to that of the standardized body measurements.
  2. Graded Paper Pattern: Pattern of five consecutive sizes (for e.g. 32”, 34”, 36”, 38”, and 40” chest size) are marked in one single pattern. The required size according to the individual body measurement is traced separately, cut and used.
  3. Commercial Paper Pattern: The paper pattern for different designs are available in ready-made forms. These pattern are enclosed in an envelope along with an instruction sheet.

Good patterns are carefully labelled within the following information i.e. the pattern size, name of each pattern (front, back, sleeve etc.…), number of pieces to cut from each pattern piece etc.…

Contents of Paper Patterns:

A paper pattern should contain the following information as given:

  1. Name of the block e.g. bodice front, back, sleeve, skirt, yoke, pocket etc…
  2. Grainline on each pattern piece
  3. Size e.g. 32, 34, 36, 38 etc..
  4. Center Front (CF) and Center Back (CB)
  5. Style number or code number of the pattern
  6. Pattern piece e.g. Skirt front and back.
  7. Cutting information – how many pieces to be cut e.g. Cut 1, Cut 2…
  8. Notches – Marks needed to help in assembling of garment.


  1. Draping: Draping is the manipulation of fabric on a three dimensional form by a designer to obtain perfect fit and harmony between the fabrics and design of the garment and the silhouette of the individual.

The dress form generally used for draping is a muslin padded dress form, positioned in an adjustable stand that duplicates the human body structure.

Pattern Grading:

It is very much helpful in the garment industry starting from a pattern drafted from a particular size you can make patterns of other sizes by Grading.

Grading is a method of enlarging and reducing a pattern of a particular size proportionately to some other size.

To properly fit a pattern to a range of sizes, each pattern piece needs to be graded, or systematically increased or decreased. Generally, a middle sized pattern grade it up for larger sizes and grade it down for smaller sizes.

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