24 October 2012

13 Basic Pattern Cutting Essentials

Here is a list of some basic and essential pattern cutting equipment that I think is quite useful to have and some can make your tasks easier and more interesting, as well as professional looking. Take a look at the list and see what they are used for. As your skills improve and your projects become more difficult, your need for pattern cutting materials increase accordingly.
  • Straight Pins: I prefer to use quite fine silk pins but I do also use the pearl bead headed pins when I need to.
fine silk dressmaker pins
  • Pin Cushion or Magnetic Holder: I have both of these. A Pin Cushion is a great way to keep pins close to you at all times as you just pop mine onto my wrist. I made my one by using some old fabric and some wadding- this is also a very cheap way too, so can save you quite a bit of money. If you want to know how to make one, you can click here.
pin cushion

          A Magnetic Holder is also great as it's quick for picking up all those loose pins,   
          especially on the floor! There are many sites you can get one of these from such as  
magnetic pin holder

  • Pencils, Rubbers & Coloured Pens: I mainly use 4H pencils as they are much sharper and give a crisp line. I have the mechanical pencils too and I just buy 4H lead. I also use a varity of colouring pens to identify pattern changes and for pattern information.
  • Paper Scissors: The size you use is down to preference but I do prefer to use small paper scissors... just make sure that they are nice and sharp!
paper scissors
  • Rulers: There are a few rulers that are useful. My favourite ones are a Meter Stick to measure those extra long lengths such as dresses or trousers. 
meter stick
          A Set Sqaure/Triangle which is a ruler with two arms that give true right angles (90 
          degrees) that measures and squares simultaneously. It is also brilliant for finding the 
          bias grain and measuring seam allowances. 

set square set triangle pattern cutting

          The Pattern Master, which is quite similar to the set triangle but rather than having two  
          90 degree angles, it has a straight arm and a curved arm for measuring things like the  
          neckline. Again, you can also use it to measure seam allowances. If you're a beginner,  
          you can use general ruler as this isn't expensive but I would advise to get at least a set  
          square or pattern master at some point further down the line. They are just fab! Click 
          here to check it out.

patternmaster pattern cutting
  • Curve Rulers- Again, there are quite a few varieties of the curve rule, of which I have all and I personally find them all great for different things. 
          The French Curve is great for shaping necklines and armholes. 

french curve
          The Sleigh Curve is also great for shaping and altering necklines and armholes but it 
          is also very  useful for shaping things like collars, cuffs and pockets. These can be 
          brought here.

sleigh curve pattern cutting

          The Hip Curve not only does what it is supposed to- shape the hipline- but it is also
          fab for shaping the hemline and lapels/collars. 

hip curve pattern cutting
          The Vary Form Curve is fab for blending and shaping armhole and necklines but I 
          also use it quite a lot to shape and blend the hipline. Check it out here.

vary form curve pattern cutting
  • Awl: This handy little tool is used to pierce a hole in the pattern to indicate the ending of darts. pockets, buttonhole placements and trims. Check out Morplan.
awl pattern cutting equipment
  • Push Pins: These are great for pattern manipulation if you don't have an awl and are an inexpensive choice.
  • Pritt stick and tape such as masking tape or scotch tape
  • Tracing Wheel: There are two types, which can be purchased here
          A Pointed Tracing Wheel, which is very sharp and is used to transfer pattern shapes 
          and lines to the paper. 

tracing wheel pattern cutting

          A Blunted Tracing Wheel, which is used with carbon paper to transfer pattern  
          shapes to muslin. Although, when i teach children, I do tend to use the blunted tracing 
          wheel for general pattern cutting as it is safer for that age range.

  • Notcher: This cuts a little opening at the patterns edge to indicate a seam allowance, center lines and ease notches. It is also used to identify front and back patterns and can be brought here
notcher pattern cutting equipment
  • Measuring Tape: These are essential! I have linen measuring tapes as this type is the most flexible and doesn't tear or stretch. They are 150cm (60") long, which is the most common and have non-fraying, metal tipped ends. It can have metric (cm) and imperial (inches) on the same side or one of each on each side.
  • Metal Weights: These can be very useful as they are used to hold the patterns in place for tracing and marking. Click here to have a look.
metal weights pattern cutting

1 comment:

  1. i am Ubaid from city Delhi country India
    doing Pattern Making course
    this page is
    very informative to me
    GOOD LUCK for your work