General Pattern Preparation
by Kaaren Hoback
people wonder what pattern preparation is and why they should bother.
Pattern preparation is taking the pattern you have printed from your
computer and preparing it for your fabric. There are little things you
can do, that are quick and simple, to both make the construction process
easier and assure that your garment will fit properly.
Once you have proven your measurement chart, the program will add ease,
fit and flare for the design or silhouette you have chosen. This is your
last chance to change your mind about the decisions you have made as to
neck depth, length, flare and ease before spending your fabric.
The very powerful tools you have at your disposal within the program
allow you to try things you have never seen in commercial patterns. You
have many more options with any Dress Shop design than you ever
could have with a commercial pattern. Some of the brightest ideas simply
won’t work well for you. They are fine in concept but fail the reality
Plan, plan, plan! Check and double check! You are designing, and you are
the one making the decisions. Plan your decisions and keep track of them
by using the pattern summary option found under file. Write text
notes in the free form text field.
Coming in Late March!
The next Dress Shop update is scheduled
for late March and will include fixes and enhancements based on user
requests and reports of the past few months. And, this update will
also include the "Spring 2006 Collection", a collection of the most
popular topical patterns of the season. The Spring 2006 Collection
10 gore, 12 gore, and 14 gore skirts
Empire waist blouses
Hot new neck styles
25 patterns included for $49. Coming
late March. No advance orders, please.
My Pattern Designer
The future of pattern drafting software has arrived : My Pattern
Upgrade your software now so that you get more of what you want in the
best fit possible. Discounts to customers that already own one of
Livingsoft's Dress Shop Family programs are available AND through March
15th you get additional FREE patterns of your choice! See:
Hurry, special pricing ends soon
You can also view the new My
Pattern Designer newsletter at
Check it out!
Q & A
Where can I get directions or
advice about sewing a neckline or closure type that I am unfamiliar
A. While Dress
Shop does not include directions for every option in the product (you
would need a substantial book for that and there are many such
available), those most often requested have had articles written and
added to the program. To see what is there, run Dress Shop and select
Help - Help Index. You'll see a number of drop list boxes. You should
visit them all, but the one labeled "How To Assemble Garments" has the
most articles. You need to first select a category, then choose the
article you are interested in.
Take a look at all of the categories
and what articles are included. There are many, all with photos and
step by step directions. Check it out.
Q: I'm never sure, when I run into a problem, if I
should use the problem report function of ds/mpd, or if I should
just post the question on the discussion board. Anyway, is there a
rule of thumb or a preference?
A. Yes, there is a rule of thumb.
Here's a list of problem types and how you can best get help for each:
consistently getting a sloper that does not fit right. The pattern
drafts properly. Others are using it without problem. But, yours does
not fit. You need measuring advice. The discussion board could be
useful, but a problem report would send in your measurements and
anything that is obviously wrong can be spotted that way. Your best
first step, however, would be to print out a full chart using a
standard that is close to your size and see if any key measurement
differs a lot while most differ a little. The differ-a-lot one should
be looked at more. The most common issues are inseam and armhole depth
(people tend to use garment measures, not body measures), side length
(just hard to get right) and shoulder slopes (same).
need to adjust the fit. For example, you have a wrinkle, or your
garment does not hang right. You need to talk to somebody who sews.
Sending in a problem report will not help, although the programmer can
forward such reports to Kaaren. In this case it is best to post your
concerns to the discussion board.