Modern Pattern Design PDF By Harriet Pepin

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Principles Of The Waist Draft

A COMPARISON of several plain shirtwaist patterns of the same size, including standard commercial patterns and those made by several drafting systems such as are used in schoolwork.

Will show a marked variation in the shape of the patterns. In the smaller sizes, 32-38, the variations are not so great as in patterns for larger figures.

These variations are of three types: minor differences due to such causes as placing the shoulder or underarm seams a little farther forward or back.

Or using a long or a shorter shoulder length or a small or larger neck or arm size measure; differences in commercial patterns due to the adoption of a different type of figure as a standard by the various patternmakers.

And fundamental differences due to the inadequacy of some of the drafting systems.

Most drafting systems are worked out with the idea of producing a satisfactory pattern by as simple a method as possible in order to reduce the number of problems that must be considered by the person using the system.

In many cases, this has resulted in the use of mechanical devices and arbitrary rules for which it is extremely difficult to give a clear explanation.

Each drafting system uses an individual plan for the drawing of a pattern, yet it should always be possible to explain by a demonstration on a figure the reason for the

method of drawing each line of the pattern; for the shape of all patterns is governed by a few general principles,

In the following discussions of the principles of waste patterns, several systems are used to illustrate each principle that is considered in order to show the similarities.

Dissimilarities of various systems and to give the basis for judgment of the excellence of each.

The systems that are used have been selected because they are ones that are used very universally in home economics classes and because in addition, they illustrate different methods of drawing.

In order to keep the identity of each system, it is designated by the same letter throughout the chapter. No matter what point is being discussed, A B, or C will always refer to a particular system.


All drafting systems use some actual measurements of the individual for whom the pattern is to be made. In a few of the more mechanical systems.

Only a limited number of measurements are taken such as the neck, bust, waist, and length of underarm, front, and back.

It is obvious that under these circumstances the width or length of all other parts of the pattern must be based on a proportion of those that are measured.

The results of this are: that such systems are seldom able to explain their drawings in a convincing way; that the patterns that are produced conform in no way to the needs of the unusual figure.

And that a slight inaccuracy in any of the measurements will be repeated in other parts of the pattern.

Description of Equipment

As the doctor, sculptor or artist should understand the purpose of various tools and equipment common to his profession, it is equally important that the patternmaker understands the purpose for which his equipment has been designed.

Most of the following articles may be purchased at art supply houses, tailor’s supply firms or at the notion departments in retail stores:

Triangle: The transparent right triangle is useful in pattern making to “square” a corner. The two smaller points will serve to establish a true bias from a vertical or horizontal line.

Diagrams in the problems that follow illustrate how this is done. In the study of geometry, we learn that a triangle must total 180 degrees.

This right triangle has two 45-degree angles and one 90-degree angle.

Tracing Wheel: This clever instrument saves hours of needless labor of thread marking. It is used to transfer lines or symbols from one pattern to another or from the final pattern to the muslin or fabric.

When the test muslins are being made by the designer, ordinary pencil carbon may be used.

When actual garments are being cut, white carbon or chalkboards are used. These markings can be easily removed later.

Carbon Boards: A suitable carbon board can be made by purchasing a 24 x 36 sheet of pencil carbon from an art supply house. This should be laid, face upward, upon a similar size piece of heavy cardboard or plyboard.

Then a length of cheesecloth is laid over and securely fastened to the back of the board with gum tape or thumbtacks.

The cheesecloth keeps the carbon paper from tearing or wrinkling and will prolong its usefulness.

AuthorHarriet Pepin
Language English
No. of Pages191
PDF Size7.8 MB

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