PRINCIPLES FOR PATTERN DRAFTING:
Drafting can be done on ordinary brown paper which should not however be too thin.
To obtain an accurate draft, use a sharp pencil, and a ruler for, drawing straight lines. To get the corners at right angles, keep an 'L' scale or set squares ready. Before drafting, it is important to understand the procedures and instructions clearly, and to have practice in drawing a well balanced pattern with smooth curves and straight lines. You must understand the following principles before starting to attempt drafting.
Patterns must be made larger than body measurements to allow for freedom of movement, ease of action and comfort in wearing. Recommended ease allowance for various parts of the body are listed below. For bust 3' to 5' (3' for a tight fitting garment and 5' for loose fitting one); waist ½' ; hip 3' to 5' ; upper arm 3' to 4'; arm hole depth 1'.
For all the garment the ease allowance must always be left before cutting out the pattern.
For symmetric designs where the right and left sides are alike, paper pattern for half front and half back only need to be made. For the bodice, start the drafting with the back part. For sleeves, full pattern must be drafted.
It is better to draft the primary or basic pattern blocks - plain bodice, plain sleeve, plain skirt without seam allowances. When this is done, be sure to leave seam allowances while laying out the pattern on the material at the time of cutting. If you do not have much experience in cutting, and want to avoid the risk of cutting without seam allowance you may add seam allowances to your paper pattern itself after completing the draft.
The following construction detailed information should be recorded and marked clearly.
Name of each piece of pattern (bodice front, bodice back, sleeve etc).
Number of pieces to be cut with each pattern piece. (For example, for a back
open dress, you have to cut 1 front, 2 backs and sleeves).
If seam allowances are not included in the draft, this should be mentioned. If seam allowances are included, seam lines and cutting lines should be clearly shown.
Lengthwise or straight grain line should be drawn with a red pencil as shown (← - →) on all pattern pieces. This line indicates that the pattern should be kept on the cloth in such a way that the line is parallel to the length of the cloth or the selvedges, it is usually drawn parallel to the centre front and centre back edges of the pattern.
Provide matching notches or balance marks if necessary along seams to show which seams are to be joined together.
Centre front and centre back line should be marked. It is advantageous to cut outward notches at centre front and centre back of pattern pieces because at the time of assembling the garment, notches on collars can be matched to notches on the neck line of garment etc.
Fold lines should be clearly shown. Fold lines appear along centre front
or centre back, edges and sometimes along hems to show where the material is to
be folded. Dart markings, pleat markings etc. should be clearly shown.