Sunday, December 6, 2009

"Le Smoking Jacket" Tutorial, Part 2: Transferring the Pattern

Keeping a lot of plates in the air.  That's what it feels like.  I'm standing amongst a bunch of dowel rods, and on the top is a spinning plate rapidly spinning around...  I'm trying to balance my desires for my business, the upcoming christmas season and gifts that I want to make, as well as a new project at Moxie Theatre that I'm involved in--the costume design for their show "Expecting Isabel" going up at the beginning of January.

One step at a time, and pay attention to one plate at a time.  Just pay that attention to all the plates a lot.  Often.  Rapidly.  When they need it.  I'm betting that eventually, with practice, I can start a sort of routine--attending one as it slows down and knowing the others are maintaining their speed and balance without my watching ...  I'm hoping I don't break too many plates along the way...

So the Relished Artistry blog may seem bit schizophrenic jumping from topic to topic and post to post for a while.  But I think in the end it will all add up to some very interesting, informative reading material that has potential uses for readers in the long run.

So to start off, I'm going to put out my next installment of the "Smoking Jacket" tutorial.

"Part 2: Transferring the Pattern"

This may not be a step that everyone wants to do--some may know exactly what size they want their jacket to fit, and won't need to save the pattern for any future use of other sizes.  There may be no need to make multiple copies of the different sizes printed on the paper.  But for my business, I wanted to make sure that I could offer jackets for all the sizes I could--I didn't want to buy multiple copies of the pattern.  So copying the pattern is important to me, and I decided to start with a men's large.

I bought commercially available pattern tracing fabric from my local sewing store.  It's called a number of different things--Pattern-ease, Pellon, etc. Folkwear actually has a Swedish version they offer through their website.  One can also use regular Kraft paper or Oak Tag or Manila paper, or even the patterning paper that comes with dots every square inch, but those involve a different process potentially requiring yet a third kind of transfer paper sometime, and the whole thing is a bit more complicated and delicate.  Instead, I've found that using this cloth saves me a lot of time.

Some fabric stores put out 50%-off coupons once in a while--take advantage of it and buy an entire bolt if you can.  Online you can buy a 50 yard bolt for a little over a dollar a yard HERE.

I put down my pattern on my tabletop surface, laid the fabric on top,  held the whole thing down with paperweights, and traced the size that I wanted with a Sharpee pen.  That simple.  Then I cut out the new pattern from the transfer cloth, and voila!  I had a new pattern specifically for the size that I wanted without having to tear up the original pattern.

I've been able to do this for a lot of the commercial patterns that I've purchased, and saved a lot of money in the long tun.  The cloth is more durable than the paper the original patterns are printed on, will last longer, and fold up just as easily.

Alrighty.  So at this point, we have our pattern all ready to go.  Next time, we cut it out!!

Until then, Live Life with Relish!

1 comment:

  1. It sounds as though you have been going through some changes here in blogland. I like the direction and look forward to reading your tutorial. Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment. For some reason turning 41 feels more significant than turning 40...odd but true. I will let you know how it goes :)


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