SOP: CAD pattern making processes
As I mentioned in the previous entry, I needed to create a list of reminders for myself to navigate the differences between making CAD and manual patterns. Some of you may find this list to be a bit funny since you’ve never made patterns any other way than with CAD but I sincerely hope you will add suggestions and refinements. I’d appreciate it very much.
SOP (standard operating procedure) pre-flight checklist for CAD patterns:
- Name file as style xxxx-A (for archive). Before starting pattern corrections, create a new file without “A” and copy pieces from the archive file -which leaves the original intact.
- Check size range, change sizes if needed. Confirm base size.
These are things that need to be done, not necessarily in order.
- Remove seam allowances (digitized hard copy patterns only).
- Mirror pieces.
- Remake rectangular pieces.
- Straighten lines.
- Edit points (straight to curve) as needed. With Gerber imports, delete the many many superfluous points.
- Redraw grainlines.
- Check that all seam lines match.
- True darts and tucks.
- True hems.
- That you have added hems!
- Check that all punches line up to dart, pocket or whatever.
- Create fusibles (copy/paste shell and reduce seam allowances by 1/8th).
- ADD NOTCHES*! The planet will not implode if there are SOME notches on longer seams!
- Once pattern is mostly done, create pattern card; make sure all parts are made (belts, shoulder pads, chest pads etc)
- Check pattern piece properties. [Piece name, Piece count (cut quantity/pairing), Fabrication]
- Confirm that sizes are congruent, that the size I’m working on is in fact what I said it was instead of M/10 etc.
- Go to View >notches. Remove notches from fusibles. Remove unnecessary corner notches.
- That darts and tucks are notched, not just points (!)
- That hems are notched.
- Check seam corner properties. Bevel or true as needed.
- Before plotting (in pattern plot manager), check “fabric” width
After plotting/Before hand off to cutting:
- Create fuse map if needed.
- Screen cap of seam allowances.
Documentation: Cutting & Sewing
- During cutting, mark any errors found (notches on fusible pieces for example)
- If a sewing issue is found, mark that portion of the pattern with a highlighter.
- Yield isn’t being documented. I don’t have a clear strategy for this yet. Either I’m not collecting the information prior to plotting (because I don’t have a place to keep it?) or Martha isn’t (ditto).
Starting a new correction cycle (of my pattern)
In the program:
- Rename existing file Style #xxxx-V.x (append with version no)
- Create new file with the next version number in the sequence [so far, that hasn't been more than 3 (once), knock on wood]. Copy pieces from antecedent file version.
- Get the paper pattern used in cutting and go through each piece, correcting each highlighted item.
Once done, stack and staple all pieces together. Mark version number (V.x) if not already marked then punch and hang. With a sharpie, mark mock up garments (if on hand) with the pattern version number that goes to them.
The last item -marking mock ups with a sharpie is not as neat as I like. I’ve been thinking of ordering labels to sew into customer’s mock ups which would have spaces to fill in with version number. What do you think of that idea? Already doing something similar?
Your ideas and suggestions to add to this list are appreciated. Thanks!
*I don’t dislike notches; it’s that so many designer (or inexperienced pattern maker) made patterns have so many of them that it amounts to cognitive clutter and gets in the way of walking seam lines so I prefer to remove all of them and start over. Anyway, I often don’t remember to add notches again because that is the last or near last thing I do with a pattern file.