Well Suited

Moving beyond your first skirt patterns to drape skirt patterns:  To work with these more complex skirt patterns you would need to have confidence in your skirt block.  By that I mean you know if fits because you've used it to make number of skirt patterns.   A small fitting or shape error in your basic skirt block will have some impact on outcome of these skirts.  Try my graded set of skirt blocks for any of these delicious drape skirt patterns.  Or you can try this pattern for yourself.  You'll find my Drape Gather Skirt Sizes 6-22 on the website as a PDF download.

My women's fitted block is a tailored, rather formal fit with the side seam sitting towards the back of the body.  The front block is 4cm wider then the back block.  This is a more tailored fitting and entirely appropriate for many garment types.  It's especially fabulous when used to make a a corset block or tailored jacket block.  The PDF download from the website is the original block and ideal for your toile fittings before cutting any dress patterns.  However many designs will work better if you equalise your dress block, in particular drape dress designs.

My women's fitted block is drafted past the waist, down to the hip level.  It's currently available as a pdf download here.  Although most drafting systems for a women's bodice blocks stop at the waist, it's essential for modern or commercial pattern making to have a bodice block that is fitted to the hip line and ready for both shirt and dress pattern making.  The addition of length past the hip line to the knee level renders this basic fitted block into a dress block.  Drop your centre front and centre back line and side seams straight down to your knee level and square across for the hemline.  Check the hip curve of your dress block, at the hipline, to make sure it has a clean curve after you have added the extra length to the knee level.

This is another in the post series where I curate my many blog posts so you can use them to self-train at your own pace.  This post is focussed on my basic skirt block and I've listed all the pattern puzzle posts that use this block.  Because there are so many posts, I've decided to separate the designs that need a stretch skirt block and I'll be featuring them in a separate post.  And my more demanding drape skirt patterns will be posted separately.

Use my Knit Block to make all these Pattern Puzzles:

This post has been curated to bring the focus to my garment blocks now available on the website. They are the same blocks I use in my pattern puzzles and the same basic blocks that are the foundation of commercial pattern making. The first block for the spotlight is my Knit Block.

To begin the release of my blocks and patterns I'll be working with a size chart that covers sizes 6-22.  It's the chart that I have used for over 25 years and it has proved to be accurate to many aspects of the Australian market.  However venturing into making sewing patterns I feel the need to expand the sizes in the range.  Some designs will only come in sizes 6-16 while other designs will be graded 6-22.  Make sure you've subscribed to my website newsletter so you hear about new releases.

Inspired by fans, I've finally had a go at the Kimono Twist Dress from the Pattern Puzzles series.  My first pattern was cut from a knit kimono block that I made from my Basic Knit Block that's now available here.  I used a mid-weight two-way stretch jersey in a near-block aubergine.  And although I've identified some issues for improvement, this first sample's not too shabby.

When I look at the vast amount of pattern making posts I've blogged since 2013, I'm overwhelmed!  So I've no idea how you're all coping out there.  I'm going to make an attempt to curate some of the posts into different categories so you can use them for a little gentle pattern making.  Many of you ask for online training, so this isn't a bad place to start by working your way through the accumulated knowledge in these posts.  I'll be Highlighting some of my posts that are particularly friendly for the beginner pattern maker.

Trawling through my blog post archive I've come to realise that many of my posts have vintage content, and I discover there are at least twenty vintage posts!  So this Vintage Inspired Round-Up is to refresh your memory of some of my earlier Pattern Puzzle posts and to share a few points in history where vintage style has influenced my work.  Where does it all start?