Grading minutiae

[I would have written “minutia” but thanks to Reader who advised me differently, I won’t make that mistake again.]
This entry is for all you anal retentive old schoolers. We know you’re out there so front and center with you. Lesley said (paraphrased) in the forum:

I was taught that when you grade, you grade the garment [with the orientation] square to the grain line. But while I was watching the StyleCAD grading lesson video, they make a note about tricky corners and using the grading axis feature (about 1 minute in), and this means that you can grade on a different axis. But wouldn’t this mean the grade changes? It might only be subtle, but it could mean a big difference if you are grading over a large size range.

The silliest thing is, I’ve done this before, and haven’t even thought about it – it was only when I watched the video that my brain went “hold on a sec…”  I’m going to try it and let you know what the difference in measurements work out to be, but I would love to know – which is correct? Grading square relative to the grainline or to the garment? Does it matter as long as you do the same to the corresponding points? Am I just worrying over nothing?

If you are anything like me, it is immaterial whether it matters, true or true? We demand the absolute truth!

Hints may be found here. And I’m delighted -beside myself really- to announce that Harry Simon’s grading book (that I also mentioned here) is available for download. Yes indeedy! We bless the Library of Congress and the Sloan Foundation. Excuse me, I have to go and finish building my altar now…

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  1. Jody says:

    Ooohh, I followed your link to the Library of Congress and found two more books available for download using the search terms “pattern grading”. Did you know anything about these?

    The American pattern grader; a complete, practical, up-to-date work on the grading of patterns for men’s garments, the use of block patterns, alterations and how to make them (1917) by Regal S. Samuel


    The American designer and cutter; a complete, practical and up-to-date work on the art of designing, cutting, grading, fitting, sketching and practical tailoring of all kinds of womens’, misses’, juniors’, childrens’ and infants’ garments (1915) by Schorr Saul

    Much happiness in Jody’s world tonight :)

    • Donna says:

      I too have experienced happiness when I stumbled upon this post. But alas! my joy was shortlived when I saw the era in which the book was written. I want to teach myself how to grade childrens clothing using Adobe Illustrator. I have no idea where to start but I do know that I will try. Will the techniques in these books help me to achieve 60% i of what I need to know and then I can use that to help myself with drafting on the computer.

  2. Terri says:

    Has anyone tried to have books scanned through Kirtasbooks?
    I tried to get copies of The Progressive Tailor done, but they couldn’t be done in the end maybe because they were trade journals. I didn’t get any explanation from them, but their idea and the machine to scan rare books is a good one.

  3. Kathleen says:

    Jody, I spent entirely too much time over there today downloading stuff. I found the pdfs for several of the books I photographed on my geek vacation so I grabbed those and deleted my photos (saved a lot of disk space and the quality is more consistent). I found quite a few gems and also, quite a few funnies. I had planned to post notes from my find today but ran out of time. I found a real doozy, the text includes “the grammar of designing and garment cutting” and it starts like so:

    The grammar of garment cutting is adapted by the first 10 numbers which are producing the height and width proportions of the woman’s body. These numbers are called grammar numbers and they are as follows: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.

    And it only gets better

    These numbers shall be divided into two classes: They are called odd and even. These numbers are originators of the height and width proportions.

    In order to begin to produce the regular proportions for the female form, we write out the 10 numbers as follows: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 and connect the odd and even numbers as shown.

    It goes on from there…

  4. Victoria Ranua says:

    Thanks for reminding me about that great resource (The Library of Congress downloads)! I downloaded the book you mentioned, several other tailoring books, and several more in my other areas of interest. Glad to know I’m not the only other one out there that appreciates the wisdom and quirkiness of the past!

  5. Reader says:

    “This entry is for all you anal retentive old schoolers. ”

    That was me! :-)

    Wasn’t born that way; I used to be merely precise. My occupational field did it.

    Thanks for the post. :-)

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