Introductory

Some very quick and clever answers on Saturday had our #PatternPuzzle solved in one hour!  Thanks to Evelyn, Mioara, Cyndi and Delwyn for such great ideas.  And thanks to all our fans for making our Saturday morning so much fun.  The pattern shape below is for the entire top, when cut as 1 pair.

Last weekend's #PatternPuzzle was a little different from our usual pattern shapes.  From the conversation you can see that some pattern pieces are obvious and some not so much.  The self-drafted image below is one of the most effective examples I have come across of zero-waste pattern making, typical of a lot of folk costume construction.

From the first moment I clapped my eyes on this little beauty, I've been deeply in love.  Never far from my mind, I had made several attempts to understand this self-drafted style.  Finally, I have something to start with.
My first ideas were based on a flat, geometric sketch as featured in the image below.  I could see how a slightly smaller hem circumference would catch on the high hip and create those beautiful drapes.

Solved with lightening speed by Alison Calderwood, Julie Eilber and RedPointTailor, last Saturdays #PatternPuzzle turns out to be a fab summer shift.  The image below has the puzzle shape right way up with some notations to help make sense of the thing.   Some of you may remember the Cowl Tee with Drape and Draped Tee from way back that feature the same kind of drape seam as this weeks puzzle.

In developing the ideas for this puzzle it occurred to me that there are many ways to make a twist skirt pattern.  What came out of that process are the pattern images below that offer two ways to cut a twist skirt.
The sketches below give you an idea of the anticipated results of the different styles of twist.  If you'd like to learn my method for creating Twist Drape Patterns I have a detailed worksheet for making Jersey Twist Patterns.   The first sketch and pattern on the left is the single twist, and the sketch and pattern on the right are for the double twist.  In the first, we twist the lower skirt of the main pattern and in the other, we twist two tail shape pieces and join them back to the skirt.

There are so many different kinds of twists in pattern making and I have dealt with a few in this blog.  These single twist styles have one major drawback and that is the fabric you use needs to look as good from the right and the wrong side.  I think this really limits your choices.  If you could get your hands on an extremely light weight double knit that would be fantastic.  You also have to choose your edge finishes (hems) to look good from the front and the back, as both sides are viewed.

Here is the anonymous shape that was posted on our Facebook Page.  A self-drafted rectangle with three notches - that's all they got!  And they were very creative with the information.  Have a look at the comments!  And this is the Vintage Pattern (now reissued as Simplicity 8452) that started me off on a quest to make and understand how a simple, self-drafted rectangle shape becomes this elegant top?!?

The inspiration behind Saturday's Pattern Puzzle has been doing the rounds of a few designers over the past 12 months.  I have cut it at least twice for different clients in the past year.  In the world of drape, it's definitely the new kid on the block.  Simple and uncomplicated this style has a casual and formal application.  I personally like the casual application and plan to make it as a tunic top to go over jeans or a long slim skirt.
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