Rohr’s Pattern Drafting Books

I should mention that I am currently in negotiations with the copyright holder of Mayer Rohr’s pattern drafting books in an effort to reprint the books. We are uncertain as to the current demand for these texts as they’ve been unavailable for so long.

The current proposal is reprinting the red book Pattern Drafting & Grading: Women’s and Misses Garment Design into one volume and the remaining 3 smaller books Grading Women’s and Misses Garment Design, Pattern Drafting: Children’s Garment Design and Draping: Women’s and Misses Garment Design, into a second combined volume. The proposed retail price for each volume is $39.95.

If you know of these books and similarly agree these are worth exposing to a new generation, you can have a direct effect in this effort if you’d write me and tell others of this potentiality. The more feedback I get, the more likely it is that this can happen. Spread the word.

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84 comments

  1. kathleen says:

    Good eye Karmen! I noted that the site hasn’t been active since last year. I don’t know them but I’m assuming they’re the sort of people who’d drop Rohr if they knew someone were reprinting the work. I think their effort is focused toward making the materials available and they’d just be glad to get the news.

    Btw, I have a sticky on this site in the vintage patterns forum. They have some titles available such as oh boy…name of it fails me now…but it’s handy that it’s up there because I’d like to do a tutorial with one of the books they have up and people could follow along since almost nobody has the book. The mentions of scale that I made in the fit/size post were largely drawn from that book and Hulme (as you already know). Speaking of Hulme, wouldn’t it be worthwhile if he were reprinted?

  2. Meghan says:

    please keep me informed about this books. i go to school in hawaii and this is one of the textbooks my teacher said to try and find. they use to teach drafting with this book. the two books she wanted us to look for were pattern drafting– childrens garment design and pattern drafting and grading. im sure if you do get it to reprint our school would most likely order many for our drafting class and years to come.

  3. crystal says:

    These pattern books by Rohr and others are almost always available on Ebay. Prices vary. I own the Patternmaking book by Armstrong and find its quite thorough and easy to understand. The Pattern Drafting books by Hoshimoto/Japan are full of drafts of patterns for the 60/70s. They are in English. Dorothy Moores Pattern drafting and dressmaking book is the easiest to understand. Its also available on Ebay for about any price.

  4. Vivian Holvenstot says:

    I would be interested in the two Rohr books if you can get them printed. Let me know if and when they become available. In the meantime, I have published my own book. “Pattern Drafting for Fit and Fashion”and put it out in my maiden name, Vivian Katherine Cizeski. See my website with the name of my book as its title.

  5. Amanda says:

    I would definitely be interested in these books. Im dying to try my hand at pattern drafting. I want to purchase a book. I have no idea which books are good.

  6. A.K.B says:

    I have seen one of these books and would definitely be interested in having copies for myself as the techniques and styles are very interesting.

  7. Marshall says:

    As a former fashion design/pattern drafting studen I am interested in different techniques and publications on sewing, pattern drafting, and design. You have my vote in your venture to get the above publications reprinted. Best of luck, and let us know when it happens.

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  9. Andrea Baptiste says:

    This is good news. I have seen a copy of the book the red one. It is very fragile. It is a book I would love to use and would be happy to purchase if it is reprinted.

  10. MURELDA BRIDGE says:

    I purchased my copy of the Pattern Drafting And Grading by Rohr in 1976. I am still using it, but it’s old and I need a new copy plus the others.
    I used the book to teach Clothing And Textiles to 16 and 17 year old students for their final exam. The book is so straignt forward and easy to understand I taught my self much from it.
    I certainly hope I won’t have to wait too long for my copies.
    Thanks for the opportunity to make an input.

    Murelda.

  11. Vineca Gray says:

    These are incredible books – they were on my book list for the Fashion Production & Design program at Sheridan College in the 1980’s….good luck!!!!!!

  12. Donna S says:

    These are the books I learned from back in the 60’s. I used them for years until I went back to school in the 90’s and was exposed to the Armstrong book. There is no comparison. I still refernece the Rohr books and have each page in a plastic sleeve in a notebook.

  13. Ramona says:

    I am a member of the American Sewing Guild and leader of a group. My degree is in Fashion Design. I have been asked by the membership to do a series of pattern drafting classes and have been looking for these books. PLEASE REPRINT THEM! I would appreciate it if you keep me posted. I used these books in the classes I took in college. I have been trying to locate them for our group classes. Your price point sounds perfect! A lot of the ladies in the group taking the class are either retired on a fixed income or newly weds just starting to sew. They have limited means but your price sounds good for them.

  14. kathleen says:

    The hold up on this was that the copyright owner Jonathon (Rohr’s grandson) wanted to negotiate a license for 5,000 copies. Try as I may, I don’t think I could ever sell that many. They’ve been out of print too long. Maybe I could sell 100. However, I’m going to write Jonathon and see if he might make them available for download as an ebook or as a POD (print on demand) title and thus capture much more of the value.

    I note one enterprising individual is now selling these as an ebook. Unfortunately, she claims to have written it. All she’s done is change the heads and faces on all of Rohr’s sketches. Worse, she’s not in the US so there’s little to be done about it other than exposing her for the fraud she is. I’m sure you understand why I don’t link to her.

  15. carla says:

    I had this book when I was in college. When I transferred to a university it “Suddenly” came up missing. I would love to get a new copy of the book.

  16. SEVRAJ SYED says:

    Hope it is reprinted really need a copy, if any one has one and is willing to photocopy and send to me I will pay a reasonable price………. working in china ladies 3 D grading huge problem and need support for training individual parties and internal teams

  17. Ellinnet says:

    Please reprint these books. I’ve looked on many websites for old or used copies and they are very hard to find (at a reasonable price). Should you get these books reprinted when do you expect them to be available?

  18. Jewels says:

    I have been trying to get one for ever, it is a awesome book that needs to be shared with the sewing world. Keeping my fingers crossed :)

  19. Cynthia says:

    Please reprint, pattern drafting is something I desire to learn, and a series such as this could help to facilitate this. Keep me posted…..

  20. Sandra B says:

    I just found a copy of this in a secondhand book shop. It’s the 1952 revised edition and has lots of loose leaf supplements inside. It is very clear, and well worth it for the beginner. I think there must be more supplements around, because I have some excellent twisted drape drafts that look like they are done by M. Rohr that I photocopied from a library book many years ago (before I learnt to keep records of sources)

    As far as a deeper understanding of the principles goes, I like Natalie Bray’s books better, but the instructions are nowhere near as clear, with too much writing and not enough visual information.

    I think the M Rohr books would be excellent as PDFs, and if you put them on Etsy, you’d probably sell heaps.

    As an aside, the other book I found was a tailor’s manual on fitting and altering, probably from the 1930’s. In a Twilight Zone moment, it had my maiden name and former phone number pencilled inside the cover. Boy, did that give me a surprise, especially seeing as I bought it before noticing! I never owned the book, all I can think of is that I had ordered it by phone back when I was a serious patternmaking book collector, (20 years ago!) and forgot to collect it. I guess his turn over is quite slow:-D. He even charged me the original price. 20 years ago he wasn’t my favourite source, although he had the best stuff, because he was so expensive. Now he’s on the cheaper side of collectible books!

  21. kathleen says:

    I think the M Rohr books would be excellent as PDFs, and if you put them on Etsy, you’d probably sell heaps.

    I hope nobody does that. The book isn’t in the public domain, somebody owns the rights to it. There already is one very slimey “lady” (used loosely) who has taken his book, put her name on it, taken all of the pictures and put new heads/faces on them in each sketch but it’s all Rohr’s work. She’s in Jamaica but I imagine the bulk of her sales are from the states.

    I’ll talk to Jonathon (Rohr’s grandson) maybe he will be interested in selling it electronically or maybe doing POD since technology gives him a lot more options now. The deal killer for me was that he wanted a royalty payment upfront based on a 5,000 copy print run. Upfront royalty is a little untoward but not insurmountable, the issue was there is no way I could sell 5,000 copies of his book (much less want to store it).

  22. camilla says:

    It would be fantastic if we can get the M. Rohr’s books reprint!!!!! I want all of them!!!!
    Please keep me posted!!!!!!!

  23. Echo says:

    I would be very interested in them too and so we’ve all got our fingers crossed that Jonathon relaxes a little…..

  24. Noaman Hafiz says:

    I am based in Lesotho and during my 30 odd career have not heard of Mr Rohrs books. But judging from the comments it would be interesting to see what the author had to offer. also i would like the site address of the jamaican lady who has used the works to her advantage.

    does anyone know of simple and inexpensive patternmaking software available on the net.

    Regards
    Noaman

  25. Bill says:

    I am very interested in finding out more on the methods of drafting, how is it going with publishing/reprints. May be now with I-Pad these great reference books can be made available for all to share and enjoy.

  26. Margaux Sanders says:

    I would definitely be interested in buying – if the content of the Rohr is published – whatever medium!

  27. Melanie Costas says:

    My Dad has this Red book by M Rohr 1961, in very good condition he was a pattern cutter in his heyday when he owned and worked in dress factories. It’s a college inside a book he says…

  28. Mandy Young says:

    Kathleen,
    I just bought the 1957 version of Rohr’s book on eBay for $85.00. My pattern instructor has a later edition. Is there anything I’m missing by having the earlier edition? I’d pay that price again for a new copy in a nanosecond. This book is gold.

  29. Kathleen says:

    short answer: I don’t have the ’57 edition for comparison so I don’t know.

    Maybe this will help. Rohr set up his book a bit oddly, a self publishing job as all good pattern making books were (now they’re commercial but that’s another story). Anyway, he updated his book by adding pages to the front. In the 68 edition, the paper colors are pink and yellow (two different updates). If you have access to your instructor’s copy, see if you can make copies of just the colored pages and you should be okay.

  30. Mandy Young says:

    Thanks for the prompt help, Kathleen. I’ve got yellow but no pink. I’ll assume that corrections were made that way and not in the body of the white text.

  31. Kieran says:

    Hi, I just saw this and have been wanting a copy of this book. My draping instructor swears by it and I think that if it were reprinted he’d use it as his textbook instead of Armstrong’s. Thanks!

  32. Kim Larsen says:

    I have the red volume which is getting very worn. It’s a gem of a book.
    Have tried to locate the others for years with no luck.
    Hope these will get re printed.

  33. wundermary says:

    I have a copy of the red book, I’ve had it since the early 80’s. It’s grand and the time is right for a reprint of those mid-century styles. There are a lot of younger women who are sewing, who do the vintage thing.
    The other two I have never seen; but, would love to! I’d buy a reasonably priced copy.
    BTW, just did a search on Amazon and EBay and was a little floored at the prices the red book commands.

  34. jennifer says:

    Hi Kathleen thats great. I was taught from Rohr’s pattern making and grading in the early 80’s. The teacher suggested we purchase it, but it was difficult to get. Waiting for reprints.

  35. Elsje says:

    My mother was a dressmaker who used this book with a friend in the 60s/70s. It was not easy those days to get a copy of your own. Now I have a friend (since primary school) and fashion designer who would give anything to just have a copy of this valuable book. Please keep me posted

  36. Dara says:

    I run an artist and crafters group out of Raleigh, NC. We have roughly 750 members. I doubt we could buy the 5,000 copies you are looking for, but we could probably get a 100, maybe more if we could give them to students. A dozen of us teach classes and something like this would be invaluable to students. Please add us to your list and keep us posted.

  37. Tracy Björkman says:

    I’d be interested in purchasing these reptinted books – the vintage additions I’ve found on the www have become quite expensive.

  38. Jewels says:

    I managed to get one on ebay about 3 yrs ago for roughly 60.00.(worth every penny)
    I am relentless and kept at it and searched the web everyday. I found another one online at a second hand church bookstore in the US (I’m in BC) for 30.00 dollars So don’t just watch ebay check out the on line bookstores and you never know your luck. I now have a nice collection of vintage pattern drafting books most all from online book stores. I would buy a reprint as well.
    Good luck!

  39. Maureen dancey says:

    I have been looking for this book ever since I left art college in 1975. I studied fashion and textiles and found this book of great use I would be very interested in buying a re print. Please keep me informed.

  40. jenn says:

    I have been looking for this book! I only saw one copy available on amazon for $210! Would love to purchase a copy of all these books! Please keep me updated.

  41. Sonia says:

    I used this book when I studied Fashion Design at Woodbury University in the ’80’s. It was also stolen from me while attending there. :( It is an awesome book and I would LOVE to have it again…and the others as well. I just searched ebay and etsy again…prices are still high on ebay and no one currently has one on etsy.

  42. Maureen dancey says:

    How many page does m rhors book printed in 1968 have? Any one have any idea please!
    About to purchase an edition of 1968 with 170 pages but have seen some with more in.

  43. olive says:

    please keep me posted if these books are reprinted. hope it’s in larger letters, the red book is excellent but i find it hard to read with its small fonts.

  44. Sara says:

    Of course, Threads Magazine mention it and would really love to buy a copy. I tested already but partially …with excelent result

    Please, keep me informed….Thanks in advance

  45. sandra powell says:

    I just read the article in Threads magazine about Mr. Rohr’s book and I would be interested in obtaining a copy. Good luck with your reprints. You’d be doing us a great service.

  46. Sylvia Fellows says:

    I have been interested in pattern and drafting and this book sounds like a very good one. I would love to get a reprint or a copy of it. Please let me know when it is available.

  47. Felicia says:

    Would love to buy the entire collection. I sew and am so tired of having to modify every pattern I use. Been trying to find any out of print books by Mayer Rohr for purchase since I read about one of his books in “Threads”. The garment they made fit the model correctly, in one try. That is how I want to sew. No more wasted time, effort and money.

    Hope to see your collection for sale very soon.

  48. Felicia says:

    Just noticed the date of your first post, seems like it’s unlikely to be re-printed. Have you considered partnering with someone like “Threads”? Or selling direct as an e-book, I love tablet books too.

    Just a thought.

  49. Ellen says:

    There are a lot of patternmakers up here in Toronto that totally adore the Rohr books. I only have photo copies but I want to know the minute you get them back into publication as I will buy them for myself as well as recommend them to students.

  50. Lannette says:

    I just purchased the 1967 children’s garment design book. I really want the whole series of his books!!! I would like photocopies in the meantime if someone is agreeable.

  51. I am interested in buying a copy of Patternmaking and Grading women and misses garments designs by Mayer Rohr’s . So in the case you are publishing, just let me know. Maybe I will buy more than 1 . This is a Dressmaking School in Brisbane Australia
    Thanks
    Ana

  52. Anne Rouse says:

    Yes, I’d definely buy this if it were offered. I’d suggest you negotiate for the rights for an e- version too, if that is possible. Here in Australia the costs of mailing from the US are high, so ebooks become more attractive ( even though a physical book is superior) – and this would open up the non – US and non – Europe markets.

  53. Sonja says:

    I bought 3 of these books 40 years ago. Used them to make clothes for myself and for my children. Love these books. So many retro pattern designs. SO very easy to follow. Even though they were published years ago just put in modern measurements and off you go.
    Please reprint these books so more people can enjoy them. They are now $150 used and more so there must be a demand.

  54. Linda Carville says:

    I was taught pattern cutting and grading by using the Rhor book. It is the most comprehensive book I’d ever found. Sadly mine was lost in a move and would definitely buy this is reprinted. Here in the UK it is impossible to find and I’ve tried to buy from the USA and have been told by the suppliers I’ve found that they will not ship to the UK. Hope a reprint will happen. It will certainly sell!

  55. Samantha Nundy says:

    Hi please add my name to the list – it is indeed a wonderful book, I had it on loan for a couple of weeks from a fashion designer and found it invaluable!

  56. Wendy Lake says:

    I would be very interested in purchasing the reprint as I’ve lost my drafting books from school – circa mid 1960’s. Many thanks for your efforts. X

  57. Deborah Lampitt says:

    Learned from the (red) Rohr book when I studied design in the 1980’s and found it a fabulous resource. Sadly, mine disappeared over the years – 1 move too many – and I would love to replace it. Additionally am now running a college fashion design department and would love to include it on my students book list. Reprint please!

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