Pattern Drafting Crash Course-Explanation Of Measurements & Diagrams Shown on a Lady

Pattern Drafting Crash Course-Explanation Of Measurements & Diagrams Shown on a Lady

Now we get into the actual activity in preparation for drafting a pattern. This explains how to make the measurements correctly from yesterday’s chart.

Take ribbon and pass it around your doll’s waist, bust or chest, neck and hips. Fasten ends together. Choose to use either the top or the bottom of each piece of ribbon as a guide for where you are starting or stopping a measurement. You may also want to mark in pencil or pen the center front and back for reference too. This section of the book deals specifically with measuring different types of dolls and all of the explanations are included in one place.

1) Full Height Head to toe height with or without wig2) Bust /Chest Around the fullest part of the chest

3) Waist Around waist

4) Hip Measure widest area parallel with the floor

5) Center Front /Back Length
Center neck to waist nape of neck to waist for back6)Full Length Waist to shoulder at neck over bust (determines shoulder seam) waist to neck over shoulder blade7) Across Shoulder From shoulder tip to shoulder tip on front and across the back at the fullest point. ONLY RECORD 1/2 of measurement8) Side Seam Length Bottom of armhole (about chest high) to the waist
9) Shoulder Length Shoulder tip to neck10) Shoulder Slope Center of waist to shoulder tip

over bust diagonally same on back. Should be almost as long as full length within about 1/4″

11) Bust Span (lady only) from apex to apex of the
bust (where a nipple might be)

12)Bust Depth (lady only) Measure from tip of bust (apex or Measure from tip of bust (apex or nipple) to waist straight down

13) Side Seam To Floor Side at waist to floor14) Back Waist To Floor Center back to floor

15) Crotch Depth Depth from waist to crotch level (if doll does not have an official crotch approximate the right area for it.)

16) Hip Depth center front to hip line

17) Side Hip Depth side waist to hip on side of doll (over the curve of the hip
18) Finger Span Around the fingers of both hands
to determine which is bigger Finger Span or Wrist19) Wrist Around the wrist20) Around Foot Around the circumference of the foot at sole level21) Upper Arm Around where the porcelain or vinyl meets the cloth of the rest of the body
22) Sleeve Length From shoulder tip to wrist23) Armhole Depth On back from center at the neck to chest ribbon
24)Waist To(A)Knee, (B)Ankle, (C)Floor, (D)Short Train (lady only), (E)Long Train (lady only)(A)Center front Waist to knee

(B)Center front waist to ankle

(C)Center front waist to floor

(D)Back waist to beyond floor for only an extra inch or so

(E)Back waist to a larger distance beyond floor for longer train 4-5″

25) Inseam From Crotch to ankle where pants would end. No seam allowance or hem added26) Outseam Waist to ankle along side of body
Waist arc Divide total waist circumference measurement by 4 and then add ease from section chart (waist is 4″ divide by 4 equals 1″ ease for doll is 1/4″ total waist arc is 1 1/4″)Hip arc Divide hip circumference measurement by 4 and add ease using section chart

Arm type Where the porcelain or vinyl meets the rest of the body determines minimum sleeve length

Leg typeWhere the porcelain or vinyl meets the rest of the body determines minimum skirt or pants length

Body type Cloth porcelain vinyl etc determines if you need extra ease

Finger type What type of fingers your doll has- a mitt, some fingers spread or individual fingers. Especially important for sleeve openings if the fingers are spread out then you have to adjust and use the finger spread measurement and not the wrist measurement if you have a porcelain or other fragile type doll and
a straight sleeve without elastic or other style of opening at the hem.

Guidelines are simply lines of undetermined length to provide a place to measure or draw a line to. They are not precise and do not have set lengths, most however, do need to be a squared (90°angle) angle from another line.

Pattern Drafting Crash Course-Child Bodice

Here is the start of the actual drafts. You will need to reference the Miniature Draft Chart for the ease necessary for the draft. Right now I am waiting for the Miniature Draft Chart to post and will update the links to it after it does!

Measurements Needed
Copy the following to your paper before you start and fill
in with the correct measurements for the doll you are working with. The
ones in italics can be found on the Miniature Draft Chart
Full Length – Front Back Waist Arc
Shoulder Slope Side Seam Length
Across Shoulder Side Seam Allowance
Center Length – Front Back Mid-armhole Mark
Ease
1) Full Length- a straight line the length of your
full length measurement
2) Across Shoulder- from the top of the full length
line across the amount of your across shoulder measurement
3) Guideline- square down approximately
1/2 of the full length amount
4) Center Length- measure from the bottom
of the full length line up and square in approximately
1/2 of across shoulder measurement
5) Shoulder Slope-from bottom corner
to guideline
6) Shoulder- from tip of shoulder slope to across
shoulder
7) shoulder to center length guideline
and bisected (for bisect amount see
Miniature Draft Chart)
8 ) Neck Curve Part B- from partway along
previously squared line touching tip of bisect to almost
center front. Leave 1/4″ square with center front line.
9) Waist- Formula: waist arc + ease (see
Miniature Draft Chart)
10) Side Seam -square up from waist side seam length 11) Mid-armhole Mark-measure from shoulder
tip to top of side seam line and divide in 1/2. Mark
out (see
Miniature Draft Chart)
12) Armhole Curve-connect shoulder tip,
end of mid-armhole mark and top of side seam in a curve,
maneuvering your French curve until it fits.
13) Waist- Formula: waist arc + ease
(see
Miniature Draft Chart)
14) Center Back Full Length- a straight line the
length of your full length measurement
15) Across Back Shoulder- from the top
of the full length line across the amount of your across
shoulder measurement
16) Guideline- square down approximately
1/2 of the full length amount
17) Center Back Length- Measure from
the bottom of the full length line up and square in
approximately 1/2 of across shoulder measurement
18) Shoulder Slope-from bottom corner to guideline 19) Shoulder-from tip of shoulder slope
to across shoulder
20) Neck Curve Part A- squared down from
shoulder to center length guideline and bisected (for
bisect amount see
Miniature Draft Chart)
21) Neck Curve Part B- from partway along previously
squared line touching tip of bisect to almost center
front. Leave 1/4″ square with center front line.
22) Mid-armhole Mark- measure from shoulder tip to
top of side seam line and divide in 1/2. Mark out (see
Miniature Draft Chart)
23) Armhole Curve- connect shoulder tip, end of mid-armhole
mark and top of side seam in a curve, maneuvering your
French curve until it fits.
24) Mark side seam allowance to either side of side
seam line

Pattern Drafting Crash Course – Glossary Terms

Glossary of Terms

Abdomen– area between the waist and hips around the belly button areaAbdomen arc– 1/4 of the total circumference of the fattest part

Apex– the doll’s nipple if she has one or the tip of her breast

Arc– 1/4 of complete circumference measurement

Banana dart– a dart that looks like a straight up and down bananaBasic block– your pattern that you drafted from your measurements it has no design to it

Bias grain– the diagonal of the fabric and your grain line is lined up with it for a different drape

Blend– making separate lines look like 1 continuous one

Bust– chest level on a child or man or the breasts of a lady doll

Bust arc– the distance from the flat ribs below the bust to the apex

Bust bridge– distance between apexes

Cap ease – difference between cap and armhole measurementCap– height distance from biceps to cap at center

Center back- center of the back usually where there would be a spine

Center front -center of the front of a doll where there would normally be a breast bone

Circumference– distance around somewhere

Cloth body– the body is made of cloth and is very soft and huggable.

Composition body– the body I made of a plastic substance and does not squish when you hug your doll

Cross grain– grain running from selvage to selvage

Crotch– area where a drink and wet doll wets and where panties would normally go

Dart intake– the extra added to a pattern so that when you sew the dart it doesn’t end up too smallDart leg– one of the lines that makes up a dart

Dart point– the tip of the dart

Darts– used to fit a garment close to the body primarily for lady dolls but can be used on children or men but never on a baby.

Drape– holding and pinning a piece of fabric up to a doll and pinching the material until it fits then marking where darts are and making a basic pattern from
the fabric markings in a connect-the-dots style.

Ease– the extra bit of room that allows you to dress the doll without breaking herElbow level – elbow of doll

Finger span– the distance around all the fingers at the largest point

French curve– plastic tool used to draw curves various sizes are available including ones specifically for dolls

Grade– to enlarge or shrink an current patternGrading– the act of enlarging or shrinking a pattern

Grain line– center of garment running normally from top to bottom of piece

Hip arc– 1/4 of the total hip measurementHorizontal balance lines or HBL– horizontal lines used as a basis of where the bust waist and hip lie so that measuring is more accurate and easier

Notches– used at the armhole and top of sleeve to ensure that the sleeve doesn’t end up crooked when sewn

Porcelain body– made of porcelain doesn’t squish and is very hard similar to a composition body only very fragile

Princess line– the style of a pattern where the bodice or skirt has been split into 2 pieces for each quarter of the body

Raglan– a style where the sleeve doesn’t come from the shoulder tip but from the neck shoulder junction as in a sweatshirtRight angle or RT angle– a 90-degree angle commonly found at necklines centers side seams and armhole bottoms

Rulers– measuring tool

Seam– sewn together pieces of fabric to form 1 pieceSeam allowance or S/A– allowance of extra fabric so that your sewing machine has a little extra to grab on to when it tries to feed your fabric through.

Sleeve cap -the curved top section of the sleeve from the front to the back

Sleeve ease– the added room needed to allow the arm to move if necessary

Straight grain– the vertical grain of the fabric

Style lines– various lines made on patterns to create a new look or design

Torso– the body part of a doll with out the head, arms, or legs.Truing the pattern– checking to be sure that all areas match up side seams are the same length, shoulder seams are the same etc.

Waist arc– 1/4 of the total waist circumference measurement

Wrist level– the bottom hemline area of a sleeve, level with the wrist of the arm

Pattern Drafting Crash Course – Tips & Tricks for Pattern Construction

Here are some suggestions for some common items that can make drafting and sewing for smaller dolls easier!

Dryer sheet— can be used for any spot that requires interfacing of sorts as in collars and cuffs but should not be used for the entire garment. I have tried it several times and cutting it away sometimes ends in holes in the actual garment no matter how careful I am.

Tear away stabilizer— this is useful for china silk that is slightly heavy yet still slippery. The bad thing is that tearing it away sometimes will distort the stitching and fabric.

Water Soluble stabilizer— my latest discovery! This stuff is easy to use simply trace the pieces to the stabilizer and construct the garment. When ready to get rid of the stabilizer simply dunk in cold water and it all dissolves like magic leaving soft silk in it’s place. It is also handy to use in bodice construction as when you turn bodices sometimes pointy or even dull tools can poke through the fabric the stabilizer helps to prevent this thus avoiding the ruin of a lot of work! So far I haven’t found a downside to this yet.

The 2 stabilizers mentioned above are available in the machine embroidery section of any sewing or craft store and are usually very light weight. My current packages of both the Tear Away and the Water Soluable (Solvy) are by Sulky. No I do not sell the items mentioned I just use it and love it!

Machine basting patterns to fabric is a lot of work. I’ve found that hand basting is faster and less of a hassle as you do not have to pin the pieces to the fabric first. Slightly larger stitches are ok for this too as you want to be able to see to take them out later!

Best tools I’ve found so far are crochet hooks. A size 5 crochet hook has a blunt butt end that is smaller than a bodkin which is useful also but the crochet hook also has a rounded end by the hook that is great for getting bodice pieces to turn nicely too. This is especially important for half inch scale bodices!

Got small kids in the house? I do!  Mischief makers both. Now being that I sew and do it A LOT I use needles and pins…. standard pin cushions don’t babyproof enough to suit me. My solution is to take the nice childproof prescription medicine bottles and put pins and needles in those. I have a nice fat one for pins and several skinny ones for various types of needles including sewing machine needles. This makes good storage…. and the kids can’t get into them!

Alternate to ribbon for measuring small dolls accurately is a twist tie.To measure simply place one end at the starting point and the other end you bend then measure the tiny portion before the bend against an accurate ruler.

Dressmaker’s Ham Pattern (pressing aid) – originally on Perfect Patterns but not on the current site it’s on an old page.