Pop quiz: how to split a draft?

rita_dress_pop_quiz_smallThis is a guest submission sent in by Rita Yussoupova that I was supposed to post last week. Rita writes:

I recently showed this little trick to a beginner patternmaker and she loved it. I am sure you know this and I thought it might be fun for others to play with. This may be a challenge for beginners learning to make patterns manually.

Here is an image of a pattern draft of an A-line dress with waist seams. No parts of the draft overlap except the skirt pieces along the side seam.

Challenge: how do you separate the front and back skirt of the draft without having to trace off one of the pieces -while preserving the shape of the side seams- and without trimming off the front or back skirt at the side seam?

The red arrow marks the area of overlap. A larger image is available if you need it. I will post the solution to Rita’s challenge next week. For what it’s worth, I did not know the answer to Rita’s puzzle.

By the way, consider yourself invited to submit pattern puzzle challenges to other visitors. Just email me (contact info is always on the about page).

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  1. Teijo says:

    While it does require some cutting, perhaps folding the straight section of the skirt seams and slitting the hip curve and the hem overlap might work?

  2. hjung says:

    It is easy and was done so in the past. You cut into the overlapping that it looks like a shark bite . But the teeth are not sharp they are flat at the top (that is the side seam) . So you get the whole seam contour and can interpolate at each side what is missing

  3. Susan Wright says:

    Tape a piece of pattern paper over the overlap. Cut one side seam in the new layer only. Flip it back out of the way and cut the other side seam in the original paper.

  4. the only way i can thing of is to cut out the overlap, trace a copy, and tape the copy and original onto the skirts. but that might violate the rules of the puzzle…

    on second thought maybe @SusanWright’s idea is better!

  5. Anir says:

    I would do what hjung/heidi says–lots of cutting involved but you’d preserve the skirt line. Just need to make sure you get the front and back hemlines also–but not hard to do–just takes time. I couldn’t think of a way to describe the process–and was too busy to print and cut up a copy of the draft and then scan it–but hjung/heidi’s description is it. You’d be left with edges on either side that look like combs–I guess you could leave larger sections cut out in places the area of skirt edge is straight. Would be faster that way.

  6. Paul says:

    I would not draft the pattern with an overlap. I would start with blocks that I know would fit the proposed figure properly and separate the front and back by the amount that the skirt flares on the side. If you are using pattern paper, you can fold the draft on the vertical line at the side and use a tracing wheel to match the side seam and the hemline.

  7. I suppose (reaching back to my younger days when I cut out pattens with a razor knife), I could cut out one panel through two layers of paper (the draft and a fresh sheet). And then cut the other (after carefully aligning, using hjung’s interpolate method).
    But I suspect I would simply use a tracing wheel (or pencil/ruler) – which violates one of the rules given.
    Upon re-reading, have I violated two of the rules given?
    * * *
    …. a-ha!, a digitizer would take care of it………nope, the digitizer mouse is doing the trace.
    * * *
    I am trying to picture Susan’s method. If one cuts the fresh paper with scissors (or shears) how accurate can that be without tracing? (well, with a razor knife, using just enough pressure to cut through one layer of paper would work).
    * * *
    Seems as though (so far) each solution involves tracing in some form.

    I give (this time)…. but it was fun. I will await the answer.

  8. Mario says:

    So, how do we cut the drawing into a front and back piece without cutting through either the back or front? Seems like a typical quiz we get here. So, the answer is somewhere different than solving the problem of an overlap in the drawing.

    Normally this would be the solution: you choose one of the seams, cut it and then remake the other part.

    Candidate for “the right answer”: start with a wider gap between the side seams.

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