Apr 4, 2011

Pattern Drafting… the smart way

maria martin pattern drafting
A few days ago I attended a pattern drafting workshop… and it absolutely blew me away! It’s a relatively new pattern drafting method and ruler that is so amazingly simple to use it’s genius…although it’s clear that a whole lot of hard work has been done in the development of such a system.

It’s called the Maria Martin Designs Pattern Drafter. The lovely Maria ran the workshop and announced in her opening introduction to us all that in the space of a mere few hours we would draw up a pattern block for a dress, trousers, sleeves and a collar using our own measurements… and then actually sew up a calico of the dress block to do a fashion parade of sorts. I was sceptical, this sounded like a lot to fit into the day.

front and back dress block

Well, we all did it and easily too! Maria, using her prior years of experience as a seamstress, dressmaker and sewing teacher has developed an all in one ruler that enables you to easily and quickly convert just a few basic measurements into an accurate pattern block minus the math, stress and frustration that seemed for me to go almost hand in hand with drafting a pattern from scratch.

Maria’s done all the hard yards and converted all the right equations, grading's and done all the research to come up with a product that I honestly think is going to be HUGE in the sewing world – for professional and home sewer alike!

pant block pattern

If it hasn’t become apparent, I am just in awe of this dress making tool – if it doesn’t take the sewing world by storm then the sewing world is missing out! It is so simple to use and straight forward that even a beginner can produce fantastic results… our class consisted of women ranging in sewing ability from a beginner who hadn’t used her new sewing machine yet to some women who had been sewing clothing for decades – but we all found the pattern drafter able to easily produce a well fitted calico in quick time for yourself or others… it can produce block patterns for sizes 8 to size 30 Australian, 2 to 24 American, 34 to 56 European… AND for those not in Australia or on the metric scale Maria’s system is available for purchase online and soon will be marketed in America… AND she is working on a pattern drafter for children sizes – you can bet I want to be first in line for that one!

Anyway, enough gushing – you really should check it out for yourself and unleash your inner designer. Here’s a short video of Maria demonstrating The Pattern Drafter….
Maria Martin Designs Pattern Drafter
or Click HERE to visit her website and find out a little more about the next big thing!

You may think the system is a bit expensive for $385 but you will be converted if you give it a chance and weigh up the comparisons of other systems, rulers and also just from the time saving aspect alone.

So, here’s a pic of a dress shape that I want to use as inspiration using my new block pattern… I like the neckline – but perhaps not so plunging, I love the belted waist and the below knee length… I am not really a dress kind of girl of late but I think that this pattern drafting system just may have the potential to change that because mostly I don’t wear dresses as I just don’t like how they look on – my post children body is just not a standard size (what is a standard size these days anyway, hey?)

a little inspiration

I’ll be sure to show it off here when it’s done too!

Now, as for tutorials… here’s the before of my next project:
country road top

Its a large Country Road tiered ruffle top – another thrift shop find… was going to keep this for myself but really, ruffles on a larger frame, especially over my middle section really does not do me any favours so it’s going under the (knife) scissors… the top that is!!!

And don’t forget to enter my FOLLOWER GIVEAWAY… currently at 277 followers – another 3 and for every ten after that there is another prize being added for the winner, so jump on board, follow me around and let me know you stopped by!

Cheers xo

Oh... and just so you know - I'm not getting any benefit or inducement for sharing with you my opinions on Maria's Pattern Drafter... I am sharing my opinion with you all because I honestly was so impressed with the workshop and the drafting ruler AND because I'll be using it to do some adult tutorials for clothing (might be a nice change now and then from the toddler/girls clothing tutes, what do you think?)


  1. This is something that I would most definitely be interested in....thanks for sharing, off to check out her blog now :)

  2. Yes, I can see you in that dress. And it was the most inspiring day I've had for awhile. But more woolly wonders await me, as I set up more projects, and then fix the sewing space so I can get the sewing done. I can't wait to work on a pattern.

  3. That looks really good and I really need to learn how to draft a proper pattern not my usually squint and cut!

  4. Just found this post and am wondering whether you have anything new to add regarding the Pattern drafter a few years on? Do you still love it? How often do you use it? I am looking to purchase it but am unsure of taking the plunge!

  5. i love the double layer skirt, it is genius. i will make one for each of my dear granddaughters and i hope they like them, but the almost 10 year old is getting picker like a teen. i would like to try the pattern drafter, but the price a bit too much. i am trying to sell the soft toys that i make
    http://louisville.craigslist.org/crs/4785435663.html you can see them on craigslist but, what a time to start a small business at age 69 and not selling much. thanks for the lovely skirt barb@iglou.com


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