How Patterns Work

How Patterns Work

Print, Kindle and iPad Editions

This is our introductory pattern making book. In the print edition, 500 pages of crisp black and white images will take you through common pattern making terms and fundamental pattern changes. These clear images are also easy to view in the Kindle and iPad editions of the book.

ISBN-13: 978-1481959094
ISBN-10: 1481959093
Print Price: £17 / $25 / €22
eBook Price: £7.99 / $9.99 / €9.99

How Patterns Work is our introductory pattern making book. It is available in a paperback print version, with digital versions for Kindle and iPad. All versions of the book feature detailed black and white illustrations.

Pattern making is a complex process that requires an understanding of how the 3D curves of the body can be translated into a 2D blueprint. While there are many large, comprehensive texts that are well regarded in the field of pattern making, the complexity of these methods can sometimes leave fashion design students and home sewers behind.

How Patterns Work is designed to act like a pattern making prequel.
Instead of being another book filled with complex measurements, ratios and angles, How Patterns Work goes back to basics to ensure that students and sewers understand the fundamental principles behind many common pattern changes.

In this way, the book is designed to sit alongside more comprehensive books as a companion text. While the book can often appear very simple, our approach has been that when somebody is really stuck on a part of a pattern and is just not quite “getting it”, then a longer explanation with lots of pictures can help the idea to really click, making it easier for the student to apply the same pattern change in future.

The first half of the book is almost like a long form dictionary of pattern terms to help provide a thorough explanation of all the different features of patterns such as grain lines and notches. The second half of the book shows a range of different pattern making changes that can be learnt separately and can then be applied in different combinations to any garment pattern. The reason why these pattern changes have been shown away from garments is to enable students to focus on the logic behind the pattern change, instead of becoming confused by the actual shape of the garment, or being distracted by working out body measurements.

Note that this book is unlike other pattern making books – there aren’t tables filled with body measurements or long lists of pattern drafting instructions. Instead, this book aims to teach you the why behind many different kinds of pattern changes. Once you understand the basic ideas at work, and grasp the mechanics of what is happening to the pattern and the fabric, you can then feel confident of making changes to any patterns on your own without needing to rely only on specific pattern recipes.

  • ...I will be using it as a valuable resource when passing the skills on to others and also to remind me of the "how and why" when I come to do something I haven't done for a while...
    - Brigitte Tetzlaff"How Patterns Work" Paperback on Amazon.co.uk
  • ...I love it because it talks about the very basic terminology and principles in pattern making and helps me adopt a set of skills that I can work with for my own designs...
    - Amazon Customer"How Patterns Work" Paperback on Amazon.com
  • ...I have found other text on the subject, either over complicated or flowery and unhelpful. This book is neither and has a no fuss approach, with beautifully informative diagrams....
    - Curtis"How Patterns Work" Paperback on Amazon.co.uk
  • Everything you wanted to know but didn't know who to ask...
    - Suzy W "How Patterns Work" Paperback on Amazon.co.uk
  • ...Just buying a book on how to make patterns is just that, it tells you how and sometimes a little bit about the why. Understanding why you do something for a certain effect, or should I say what you should do for a certain effect is explained in this text...
    - Aspiring Artist and Designer"How Patterns Work" Paperback on Amazon.com
  • ...the perfect 'prequel' to any patternmaking course; by which I mean that the authors presume no previous knowledge or experience and establish rudimentary concepts with well thought out examples...
    - Sergio Eliud Romero"How Patterns Work" Kindle Edition on Amazon.com