Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Patternmaker Needs To Get Good At Sewing (For Their Own Sake)

Weekends should always be devoted to your family (in addition to the time you set aside during the week for your family as well) but if you're going to do something for your business/career you should focus on those activities that don't necessarily make you any money right away but will help bring your career or business forward.   My personal example being my lemon tulip lingerie pattern.   I started sewing it today,  little machine sewing,  little hand stitching.

The first thing I'm working on is getting the facings and waist and bodice band together.  My past experience has been that small pieces get lost or damaged if you've got kids and pets so I'm avoiding the problem totally by hanging these sewn up sections on a hanger.   As for protecting my other work on the ironing board,  I've covered it all up with a blanket to keep my cats from putting pulls in my work.

I've started catchstitching the self fabric interfacing to the back bodice band already (see photo below)

and it had me reflecting on what Kathleen Fasenella said "a patternmaker should have exceptional sewing skills".   It's true for the benefit of both the clients in need of patternmaking services and the patternmakers themselves.   Speaking as an entry level patternmaker making money from providing this service I understand the reasons for this are:

1. being able to sew up your own patterns will crystalize several things:

     (a) where the notches need to be when you get confused
     (b) how much fabric a design actually needs
     (c) the fit resulting from your approach to drafting
2.  if your pattern turns out well,  you'll have full confidence in the product/service you're offering, you won't think it fit because you applied your knowledge of pattern drafting as well as you could,  but you KNOW your pattern is accurate.   This is confidence for a patternmaker.

3.  Confidence results in taking less time to do your work simply because your not hesitating any more about whether or not your making the right move.

Aside from all this perfection though,  I've got to make mention of how important is is not to be a perfectionist,  at least not right away.   My mom taught me how to sew and went a long way in inspiring me when it comes to fashion.  However,  she was a self proclaimed "non-perfectionist" which was good for me because it allowed me not to be quite so intimidated by the lengthy process of garment design,  development and construction.   Chances are, if she had enforced perfection,  I might not have took this career path.

Case in point,  I took my perfectionist attitude to my art and I didn't get nearly as far in developing my skills as an artist as I did in patternmaking and fashion design.   To this day I'm still intimidated by the thought of picking up a brush or pencil.  Although I do intend to overcome with this when I get the time.

If you'd like to read more about fashion, information on the industry and online schools check out my site at:

If you're a designer or home sewer and you'd like to find some cool eco-friendly fabrics and more check out my resource page at:

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please feel free to leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you :)