If you're familiar with this site, you have probably already tried your hand at designing and drafting your own sewing patterns.
You're on your way to designing a whole new wardrobe!
Are you ready to dive a bit deeper? Explore a bit more - more styles, more detail, more options...
"The Beginner's Guide" courses are designed to help you, as a (somewhat) experienced seamstress, learn the skills you need to design and draft your own sewing patterns for clothes that will fit and flatter every time.
Let's face it, most of us do not have fashion-model figures. As a non-standard size myself (I'm short, fat, and way over 40 - so things have shifted!), I know all too well how hard it is to find clothes that fit and look good in a retail store - or in a commercial pattern.
I've already helped hundreds of women learn to design and draft sewing patterns through these classes, sold as separate tutorials.
The courses are based upon apparel industry practices, which I've used for more than 20 years.
It's called the Flat Pattern Method, and it utilizes a basic block pattern that you'll use as a template for all of your fashion patterns.
This block is first altered to fit you - so you never have to shorten sleeves, lengthen the bodice, or adjust the darts ever again.
Here's how it works:
Course materials are available as downloads or on DVDs (or Flash drives, depending on the number of files).
The first step in designing your own clothes is making a sketch of what you have in mind.
Using a sketchbook with croquis (posed body templates) helps you to truly visualize your design - how it will look on a real person, in real proportions, front and back - and even in the colors you choose (using colored pencils)!
These sketchbooks have realistic body proportions, and are available in both misses and plus size bodies (and the books themselves are available in full page or half-page sizing - perfect to stash in a tote!).
These sketchbooks are my own design.
The examples on this site reflect MY fitting issues and how I resolved them. Your body is likely very different.
But, since this is a site about the mechanics of making patterns and not specifically about fitting, I'm not going to address other fit issues here. And believe me, there are others who can address this issue better than me.
Any of the books listed below will help you achieve good fit. You can use the techniques on any pattern; but why make the same corrections over an over again? Apply the principles to your block, and the fit corrections YOU need will be automatically built in to every pattern you make!
I can recommend any of the following books to help you achieve good fit, no matter what your size or shape. I own or have used almost all of the books on this list, and have been pleased with how they address fit problems.
• Pattern Fitting With Confidence - Written by the late Nancy Zieman, host of the TV series "Sewing with Nancy". She provides a straightforward, down-to-earth approach to sewing and fitting. Very user-friendly.
• The Complete Photo Guide to Perfect Fitting - I love this book!!! So wonderfully illustrated with photos, using commercial patterns to demonstrate the pattern alterations. It addresses almost any fit problem you might have. So easy to understand and follow!
• Sewing for Plus Sizes - Creating Clothes that Fit and Flatter - A great book for Plus sizes! As a woman gets larger, it's not just the measurements that change - our overall proportions shift, too. This book addresses the different body types and proportions you commonly see in larger women. Truly helpful for larger women.
ClothingPatterns101.com does not sell the personal information of its users to anyone, ever.