Why do I need a Dress Block?

Can't I just re-design a purchased pattern?

On ClothingPatterns101.com, I use the flat pattern method of pattern design.  The flat pattern method starts with a sloper or "block", which is a very plain, unadorned pattern meant to fit your body perfectly. 

While you probably will never make a garment by simply cutting and sewing the block pattern (it's much too boring), it does serve as the blank canvas from which you create your own fashions. 

If you start with a purchased pattern, it's much more difficult to design something new. You have no way of knowing how much fullness was added to the pattern already, so you won't know how much more to add - or take away.  The sleeve length might or might not be correct. You just don't know what you're starting with unless you cut and sew the pattern, and make changes from there. 

In other words, you won't be designing anything new. You'll just be altering and existing pattern.  And of course, you're free to do that - but it's not design. 

In this video, I'll tell you about the Flat Pattern method of pattern design (which is what we use at ClothingPatterns101), and about the importance of the basic block. 

In the video above, I reference pages on the website that offer more information. 
Here are links to some of those pages:

Using a commercial pattern to create your block

Fitting the bodice

Fitting the sleeve

Fitting the skirt

Transferring the fit adjustments and making a block pattern

A Beginner's Guide to Drafting a Dress Block(from measurements - available for purchase)

Time to get started on your dress block, whether you use a commercial pattern or draft it yourself!

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