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#20760 Learning to Tailor by Self Tuition- (Beginners Please Read)

Posted by J. Maclochlainn on 23 March 2011 - 08:31 PM

Please read this all the way through. It is over 2600 words long and did this for your benefit so start your journey in tailoring the right way by taking in this treatise. Thank you.

Beginners, Home-sewers and those passionate about tailoring.

I wish to welcome you to the Cutter and Tailor Forum and glad you have found this little vault of tailoring knowledge on the web. I am not an official spokesman for this forum, just a passionate contributor and thought this will help cover the absolute basics to help one get started, this will help keep the posts down asking the same questions over and over again while giving a central depot to all the beginning information to be referred to.

As alluded to above, over the past few months or so, there has been certain reoccurring themes in the threads started by those new to tailoring that has prompted me to write this guide. In this guide I will give the beginner a step by step focused look into how to get the most out of this forum. From where to start to beginning your first garment. But first, lets take a moment to look at some basic information that will make this forum more enjoyable for all and give the beginner some back ground.

What this Forum is:

The forum was started in March of 2009 by Sator, a passionate enthusiast of tailoring, to give the trade a place to “talk shop”, to educate, and to learn from experienced tailors throughout the world. As the trade has declined over the years, the trade journals and sense of community has started to be lost as well. This forum is a step forward for a new and progressive community of, for, and by tailors. As such, the majority of the topics on this forum are advanced in nature and well beyond the skill set of the beginner. So with this in mind, new sections have been added as the forum grows for those just starting in the trade. The "The Apprentice Cutter and Tailor" <click> section was set up to allow those new to tailoring to be educated by either the pinned posts or by posing your question to other forum members. Remember, the only stupid question is the question not asked. When posting a question, be patient and humble with the replies, no one is getting paid to help you. I will tell you now, being demanding, a know-it-all, or telling the tailors how to teach WILL NOT gain you any favours and the gift cow will dry up as quickly as it produced!

What the Forum is not:

While the purpose of the forum is to educate, be it for beginner or advanced practitioners of the trade, this is not your own personal tutorial site. In the past people have even made demands of the contributors. This is rude and frowned upon. Please realise many of the contributors to the forum are busy and make a living out of tailoring, their advice is given with the best intentions and from their own time. While the contributors are more than willing to answer your questions and help, remember that you can only be helped as far as you are willing to help yourself. With this said, please let me guide you in how to help yourself.

First off, this is NOT a historical or costuming forum for home sewers, if you ARE a professional costumer please read this thread. If you come here to learn how to make a Victorian Frock coat by the weekend, FORGET IT! You will be shown the door as this is NOT the scope of this forum and there are many costume forums available for this sort of thing. Some may think I am hypocritical in my view of this as I, myself, am considered an expert in the field (toots horn) and openly write on and make historical garments. To answer this, I respect this forum and its rules. I respect the members of this forum and their expertise and thus follow the guidelines probably more than most here. While I do make historical garments, I am, first and foremost a tailor. Lastly, on this subject, DO NOT message me if you think Sator or any of the mods are being unfair to you or your aspirations to learn historical tailoring, I will always side with the ToS(h)* of this forum. Thou hast been warned.

Beginning your journey:

As the forum has been up for well over a year now, and through the prolific and tireless scanning by Sator and others, it should be some time before you actually have to ask your first question. In each section there is more than enough to keep one busy until you hit a snag and need to ask for help or advice, typically around the first fitting. We do understand that a little help is needed to discern what is important to where you are and where to need to be, so the following will give you a rough guide in how you should focus your efforts. Again, there is more than enough information to get you started in tailoring, please be aware though that no book, article or on-line tuition will ever be a replacement to an apprenticeship or personal mentoring in person by a practising or retired tailor. There are a few here that learned from retired tailors and have built up a good living. Others here have had proper traditional apprenticeships. Never-the-less they will all tell you, no matter how broad and exhaustive this forum becomes, this forum will never replace experience, wisdom and knowledge that you can only find with a tailor. Seek out a tailor if you can!

Some steps to make your learning experience better:

1.First thing you will need to do is leave any desires of grandeur, big dreams, ego and enthusiasm at the door. While these are important, they will only hurt you in the beginning.

2.Be humble and respectful not only to the art of tailoring but to the contributors as well. They have years of experience and are willing to share, so in return take in, evaluate and apply their advice if applicable.

3.Remember tailoring has a thousand years of oral traditions passed from master to apprentice, it has only been resent, in the long history of tailoring, that these “secrets” have been put to paper. As the trade is no longer a large as it once was apprenticeships are few and far between and at the present moment this forum IS the best resource to learning the art of tailoring. As mentioned before though, it is NOT a replacement for learning from a tailor in person.

4.Make an effort. Take a little self initiative with the following advice and put it straight to practice. The more you show, the more willing we are to give input and advice to help you develop your skills.

5.Lastly, we will be honest with you even if you are not honest with yourself. We have passion for what we do and as such respect the art and science of the trade. With this understood, not being honest in our thoughts and actions will be disrespectful to the trade. Also bearing this in mind, some posts by contributors my come off or perceived as condescending and/or condemning in nature, this is not the case. Unlike costuming or home sewing forums where everyone is nice and give compliments over every little thing, we will not. So please do not take it to heart, as professionals we have professional standards. This is good, as you will always know we will be honest in our critiques, which will help you better yourself in the end.


The Basics:

As with any trade, there are certain foundational skills that need to be mastered before making a serious study of the trade. You can not build a house if you can not swing a hammer so to say. So here are some recommended steps to get you to the absolute basic skill set before you attempt any tailored garment.

Starting out

Your first hurdle, when starting out, is to hold and use your thimble properly. A simple enough thing you might think, it's not for most people. This in itself will test your mettle in wanting to become a tailor, or at least learn tailoring methods to improve your home-sewing projects. Your thimble should be an open top thimble, to make sure it's the right size you must place the thimble on the table, wide in up. Now place the middle finger of your sewing hand into the thimble. The tip of the finger should be able to touch the top of the table easily yet not fall off when you lift your hand. This in mind, lets find a thimble, look at this thread <click>!

Once you get a thimble that fits, you need to purchase a blister pack of multi-sized betweens.

In Continental Europe, get Prym no. 5-9 betweens. The no 5 needles (the longest) are used for basting and buttons. The no. 7 (middle) is for general sewing and seaming. The no. 9 (shortest) for felling and thick cloths.

In the UK and North America, get John James no. 3-9, The no 3 (largest) then would be used for basting.

Soon you will get a feel for the different needle sizes and can purchase them by the size as you need them.

Now that the thimble and needles are sorted, you will need a bit of good worsted cloth, preferably with a pinstripe, a cake of bees wax and a spool of 40wt mercerised cotton in a contrasting colour to the worsted. Once you have these simple tools read this thread!<click> Paying particular attention to the opening section of Liberty's work as this explains how to sit and hold the thimble and needle. If there is any doubt if you are holding the thimble and needle correctly watch this <click> about 1:37 in until about 2:00 then watch it again. Look at where the base of the needle is on the thimble and mimic the movements.

Here are some helpful hints, start with ONLY the fore stitch. This will help your muscles gain memory of the movements and holding the thimble without making any extra movements. Hold the needle so as your fingers are about a 1/4” from the point. The reasoning behind this is when you bite the needle into the fabric and break the cloth over the point you should always have a 1/4” stitch. Think of it as the amount past your fingers is the stitch length and when you grab the needle at the same point each time you, have calibrated the length of that stitch and each succeeding stitch. If you have problems keeping the thimble in that position as you are not used to it/ can't get the muscles to work that way, try this <click>.

NOW

Do this exercise until each fore-stitch is evenly spaced and straight and you have full control over the needle and thimble. Be honest with yourself, this will take a week to a month depending on how often you practice. Then move on to the back-stitch and repeat the process all over. I am not being funny, I am dead serious about this. This is a serious trade, not a hobby, and it will not be easy. If you do this right from the beginning, I guarantee by the time you make your first garment the workmanship will be much cleaner and you can take a little more pride in the finished product. Once you have a thorough understanding of the fore-stitch, back-stitch, cross-stitch, padding-stitch and prick/side-stitch you are ready to move on to

Your First Garment.

Your First Garment should either be a skirt (recommended) or a pair of trousers. I had been an advocate to start out with a commercially available pattern, but I have come to realize much work would be needed to make them suitable for tailoring that you might as well draft your own. It can be a little daunting at first but like the stitches it gets easier with practice. Once you make up a few you will start to see how the pattern truly works and be able to adjust more readily.

Each person here has their own drafting system that works for them, and if you ask them they will tell you “it's the best” so we will try and start with something simple. Mansie has been kind enough to provide a nice trouser draft in metric <opens a download of the system>.

For this you will need some craft paper, a yard/meter stick, a tailors square (fairgate) and hip curve (fairgate) along with a good pencil, I use a .07mm mechanical with H lead. After you draft your pattern, cut it out, place pieces on your toile cloth and trace the patterns with a good sharp chalk. Add inlays and add marking threads and then cut out.

Now we are ready for making up!

But now, how do we actually make this up? Simple, get a book. The most basic work on the fundamentals of the trade can be found in Roberto Cabrera's “Classic Tailoring Techniques: A Construction Guide for Men's Wear”. It's not the best in my opinion, but it's the easiest and most widely available text on beginning tailoring. This is probably the most recommended book on the forum and is a good base to launch from. There are a few methods scanned in the apprentice forum, but they are a little more advanced or antiquated and you will be scratching your head more than if you use Cabrara's book. Make up a few trousers, perfecting your patterns and using Cabrera's methods. Once you achieve proficiency using this book, move on to Trouser Making By Archibald Whife and Phillip Dellafera . This will give a more in depth look into classic trouser making and will give you much more professional results.

As a side study whilst making your trousers have a look at Jeffery's blog:

http://tuttofattoama...ral-divide.html
http://tuttofattoama...completion.html
http://www.cutterand...p?showtopic=435

BUT I WANT TO MAKE A COAT!

While you may be enthusiastic and roaring to jump right into making a coat I strongly advise against this approach. The amount of work needed in order to get to the point of tailoring a coat is currently well beyond your skill set. Not trying to be mean just being honest. I know trousers are not as exciting, but a well executed trouser will give confidence and will make you stand out. People are so used to the ill fitting tubes the ready to wear markets call trousers people forget what a properly made and fitted trouser feels like and have become almost a second thought in planning ones wardrobe. Truth is, a good trouser should be the foundation of your wardrobe.
By the time you make a couple of trousers by this method you will be ready to move on to Waistcoats/ vests. Again, start with Cabrera and then move on. While not many people wear waistcoats today, they are making a comeback and will help provide applicable skills toward your goal of making a coat in a couple of years time. Yes really :D

And finally, for those who do not necessarily want to learn tailoring but just improve their skills, try DPC's site on trouser making <click>. His style of basic trouser making has the home-sewer in mind and will provide you with some ideas from this perspective. You can also find David Page Coffin's book on trouser making here! <click>

* ToS(h)- My own acronym for “Terms of Service (historical)”


#43038 A "What to do before you ask for help on the forum" guide

Posted by Schneidergott on 08 June 2015 - 12:22 AM

I took the time to put together a simple guide regarding what to do before you ask for help on the forum. It is in no way complete (if it was I could publish it as  a book and make money from it).

In case you wonder "Why?", the answer is quite simple. I frequently get frustrated when I see posts regarding more or less the same problem, mostly related to making trousers. And I'm not the only one, many professionals simply give up when they see either no progress or the OPs prefer to take the advice of another amateur.

 

Anyway, here it is:

 

For aspiring „tailors“ out there:

 


 

We’ve had quite a few threads that covered the subject of trouser making which, sadly, got blown up beyond proportion and either lead nowhere or weren't used as a reference for others.

 

One of the reasons for that was (and still is) the often lack of understanding how the different elements in the process of making a garment work.

 

Let’s start with the pattern. I have no idea why someone with often zero experience would want to draft a pattern from scratch. Chances are they’ll end up with a pattern full of flaws, because they got their measurements and/ or the formulas wrong and end up with a big mess and leave it to forum members to sort it out.

 

So here is my advice (for “normal” figures):

 

  1. Buy a commercial pattern. They are available online or in specialized shops/ stores. It doesn’t matter which company made it, just make sure it has your size on it. Online sources for decent multisize patterns are:

http://muellersohn.c...nittmusterbogen

http://www.shobenfas...block-patterns/

Amazon and other (online) shops selling BURDA, Butterick, Vogue and so on.

  1. Pick the size that is closest to yours. Go for the larger one of your measurements, meaning that if (for trousers) your waist is size 50 (EU), but your hips are size 52(EU), go for the size 52(EU). And vice versa.

          It’s easier to take a garment/ pattern in than letting it out.

 

  1. Choose materials that are easier to work with. Don’t copy the pattern using flimsy paper, go for stronger stuff that keeps its shape and that you don’t have to pin to the cloth. Use weights to keep the pattern in place on the cloth. No need to buy expensive stuff for that. The cheapest weights are (for example) strong freezer bags filled with sand. For durability use 2 bags for one weight and seal them tightly. If you are more the DIY type, you can use clean old yoghurt cups and fill them with a ready to use concrete mix. You have the option to paint the weights in your favourite colour. Glue some felt to the bottom to avoid damage to paper or cloth.

 

  1. Transfer all the marks to “your” pattern. This makes it easier to apply alterations later on.

 

  1. Take proper measurements, which in most cases means let someone do it for you. Preferably in front of a big mirror as to check whether the tape is actually in the right place. There are threads about taking your measurements here on the forum or just search the internet.

 

  1. Compare and transfer your measurements to that given in the pattern size chart and see point 2).

          Müller (Rundschau) patterns come without instructions, since they are meant for professionals. Others (like BURDA, Butterick/ Vogue have a little booklet with instructions that include pattern alterations.             There is also quite a large number of books available that cover this subject.

          Since you have a proper pattern you have lines to work with that are based on a tried and tested system. Once you get the important measures right (waist, hips and rise) you can then proceed to adjust             the secondary ones (like leg length and width).

 

  1. Buy cloth that allows you to work with it. Stay away from stuff that has too much synthetics in it. Go for a high wool content.

 

  1. Check your pattern. The seams should have the same lengths, only exception in the inside leg seam. Here the back trouser is at least 5 mm shorter than the front. This amount is added through ironwork. Make sure you have enough ease built in. For example you need a minimum of 6 cm ease in the hips for a plain front trouser and a normal figure. For pleated trousers add the amount in the pleat. This number can go up and may need redistribution according to figure features (strong hips, butt shape and so on). Whether you put the seam allowances onto the pattern pieces or you keep it net is up to you. Rundschau mentions the amount of seam allowance on the pattern (when included usually 0, 75 cm), others give a hint in their manuals. Just make sure it’s a constant amount along each seam, for example 2 cm all along the inside and outside leg. Don’t leave too big inlays at the centre front and centre back, as they will create tightness when sewn.

 

  1. Keep in mind that your first attempts may not be satisfying, but even professionals use fittings to get things right.

 

  1. If something is off, try to figure out what went wrong. If necessary, go back to the start and repeat the entire process to check for mistakes you might have made.

 

  1. Transfer lines and marks onto the cloth. Important ones are: centre front (fly), waist (top of trousers), crease line all the way down, knee level, hem line. These will come in handy when assessing possible fit problems (balance, tightness, and lengths).

 

  1. Work with precision. Use the marks as guides when putting the pieces together. Don’t worry about pockets in a mock up. First you need to get the fit right.

 

  1. Put a zipper into the front fly and attach the waistband. Make sure it cannot stretch. Either press the seams open or baste them down to one side. Either way, the garment should look clean without puckers and unnecessary pleats.

Have pictures taken during the fitting. Check for distortions, pulls or ripples. The direction of those will (literally) point you in the right direction.

 

Easiest things to check are:

 

Run of front crease. It should be straight from top to hem. If it isn’t there is something wrong with the leg width (the line is pulled other towards the outside leg seam or into the crotch) or the balance (line is swinging away from the centre of the foot).

Hollow areas usually appear along with tight areas.

 

Most common flaws are (showing up on their own or in combinations):

  1. Tightness over the hips, which will make the waist area above look full.
  2. Waist attached to the band without ease or stretched out. The waist should have at least 1 cm ease (compared to the finished waistband) on each side and needs to be fulled onto the waistband shortly before and behind the side seam. This will give room for the hip bone. If more is needed, put in a small dart half way between front crease and side seam. Just make sure it doesn’t interfere with the pocket.
  3. “Whiskers” at the front fork indicate that the fork is too tight. Often comes along with:

 

3a) The centre back seam pulled into the crack. Let out front fork/ inside leg seam at the top and give the seam a nice run down to the knee.

3b) Short rise and long rise (rise is the difference between outside and inside leg measures). Simply means that it’s not in the right place, either too high up or too far down.

  1. Diagonal pulls from the top of front thigh down to the back of calves. This indicates a lack of length for strong calves. Can be fixed with ironwork, if cloth allows it.
  2. Horizontal folds under the butt. They can have at least 2 causes.
  1. Wrong balance (back trousers too long above the hip)
  2. Centre back seam too angled/ long.
  3. Rise too short, fullness for the hips/ thighs doesn’t go to the right place and is blocked in the fork.

Keep in mind that a very clean trouser leg will mean that the trousers will be uncomfortable when sitting or using stairs. You will need a certain amount of fullness and length in the fork and seat for comfort. 


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#46260 Crookening and straightening explained

Posted by jukes on 11 May 2016 - 04:12 PM

 

 


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#46244 scanned Patternbooks in english and german

Posted by tailor_s on 04 May 2016 - 03:26 AM

I just wanted to share my scanned pattern books...

 

Update:
Some of you thought  there might be an issue with the copyright...

good point :-)

for that reason I just posted a list of my books wich I'm willing to share for free.
Please pm me.

 

Sven

 

 

 

18th Century Costumes
1944 Schnittmusterzeichnungen Wäsche und Kleider
Ancient Egyptian, Assyrian and Persian Costumes
Book of Sewing
Codex de Manesse
Comedia dell arte
Corsets
Das Buch der Hausschneiderei
Der moderne Zuschnitt
Die Zuschnediekunst 1927
Die Hohe Kunst der Kleidermacher
Dirndl
Dressing a Galaxy
Evolution of Fashion
Fachwissen Bekleidung
Geschichte des Kostüms Rosenberg
Handbuch für Zuschneidekunst
Hirsches Lehrbuch1
Hirsches Lehrbuch2
Historic Costumes in Pictures
Historic Costumes and how to make them
Historical Fashion 17th 18th
Janet Arnolds 1
Janet Arnolds 2
Janet Arnolds 3
Janet Arnolds 4
Japanese Chlothes
Kleine Kostümkunde
Kostümgeschichte und Gewandformen Tilke 1
Kostümgeschichte und Gewandformen Tilke 2
Lehrbuch über das Caree System
Medieval Costumes
Mens Garments

Müller und Sohn
Kleider und Blusen Damen
Mode nach Mass
Passformfehler
Röcke und Hosen Damen
Trachen Damen
Trachten Herren
Tailormade/Schnittlagebilder
Atelier 2
Fachwissen Herren
Hemden
Historisch Damen
Historisch Herren
Jacken und Mäntel Damen
Jacken und Mäntel Herren

 

Modezeichnen
Oriental Costumes Tilke
Pattern Magic 1
Pattern Magic 2
Pattern Magic 3
Patterns of Theatrical Costumes
Salzburger Trachtenmappe 1
Salzburger Trachtenmappe 2
Shirts Men's Haberdashery
The cutters practical guide
The Tudors
The Cut of Mens Clothes
The Cut of Womens Clothes
Tracht ist Mode
Uniformen Deutsche Reich
Wiener Zuschneideverein


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#44235 My advice for aspiring Shirtmakers: Start Reverse Engineering

Posted by R.m.Bakker on 18 September 2015 - 11:50 AM

Hey all,

 

First of all my credentials, for those that don't know me, I've been an accomplished bespoke shirtmaker for several years now. I specialize in making fully handmade shirts. Besides that I'm also a bespoke tailor and own a business in The Netherlands.

 

I just received a question from fellow forum member David Page Coffin on wether or not I knew of any shirtmaking books or literature to get people going, other than the frequently found examples on the internet.

 

My answer to him was, well, the only book on the topic of shirtmaking I ever read was yours, and I looked up some drafts in a book my teacher had laying around on a dusty shelf.

 

That's it.

 

I learned the entire craft from ripping apart other people's shirts, reading DPC's book, and fiddling around with patterns. Trial and error.

 

Especially the first thing learned me a lot. Ask relatives, friends, wether or not they have expensive, high end shirts at the end of their lifetime, and just pick them apart. Look at >every single seam<. Every placket. Every collar. Every shoulder seam. See what you like. Emulate it. Try it. Develop your own style from combining the best of all of those details. Look at collars. Pick them apart completely, make a pattern based off of it, and see how all the different collar shapes work around an actual neck. Then reverse engineer the pattern so you can use that collar and stand style you like so much in every single neck size.

 

Reverse Engineering. Much like the italian tailors did in adapting stuff from savile row.

 

Shirtmaking starter kit:

 

- Thimble, Shears, Pattern paper, proper drafting rulers, etc.

- DPC's Book. "Shirtmaking: Developing Skills for Fine Sewing" http://www.amazon.co...g/dp/1561582646(seriously, get it, as it's the only book out there afaik and full with good advice and techniques)

- ingenuity. Take DPC's methods, see if you can adapt them for yourself. If you fail to use a specific method, try it "in your own way", no matter how odd that way you want to try it may seem. 

- A whole lot of expensive shirts you can pick apart (get all the expensive (italian) brands!)

- Patience. Took me 1,5(!) years of painstaking reverse engineering drafting and making absolute crap to finally make a proper shirt that actually fitted well.

- Draft, Draft, Draft. Use family as dummies. Read up on how to fit garments (I made a quite lengthy post on how far you can take fitting shirts here: http://www.rubenbakk...he-first-place/

- Trial and error

- A fair amount of stupidity, because who's going to spend this much time learning something? :p


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#42796 Shirts, Well fitted

Posted by dpcoffin on 27 May 2015 - 02:34 AM

I went looking for some useful pix and found it very difficult, compared to finding pix of shirts NOT fitting (shockingly common, even amongst fashion pix supposedly showing off a nice looking shirt...AND very instructive)...or of people looking good in shirts whether they fit or not, which obviously is a matter of taste or dispute. There's plenty of those!

 

For developing your own standards with help from a very discerning eye, you could hardly do better than to study this post. And, I'd say, to also keep doing your own on-going and never really ending survey of what looks good—AND bad—to your developing eye. Collecting pix will increase the usefulness of your search, as you'll actually be able to see your own standards developing over time.

 

I snapped a bunch of screen shots at Pinterest, but quickly found I had so many (almost all negative) that it would be quite time-consuming to put them all together with even the most minimal commentary, but I did find it fascinating to see how obviously uncritical of fit either most image posters are, or most fashion stylists are, or both. Suggesting that hardly anybody seems to really know what fit looks like in a shirt, or that the standard for shirt fit is quite low, not really surprising since almost nobody wears custom-fitted shirts, but almost everybody wears some sort of shirt, and hardly anybody, not even models, has a perfectly "normal" shape. Also of course, whatever style is current is a highly moving target, except that no shirt EVER seems to be tight enough for slim young guys, in any era!

 

And finally, in that same vein, the main thing the average image-posting person seems to be imaging that male shirt fit is all about is not actually a fitting garment, but a "fit" body inside it, being shown off, often by how much it's straining and distorting the helpless garment because it's such an extreme and shapely form.

 

The big question I came away with was: What's the difference between bad fit and simply too tight in an era when too tight IS the current fashion? My own opinionated answers were simply: 1) No matter how tight, the yoke, shoulders and upper body, at least in front, should be as perfectly smooth as possible, with no drag or sag lines going in any direction around the neck, or between the shoulder ends and the neckline and center front. VERY rare! 2), and even more rare, there should be no diagonal drag lines across the side seams; almost every slim male body seems to suffer from this, esp. from lines going from up in back to down towards the front. And finally, and rarest of all, 3) the cuffs, when buttoned, should be right at the wrists, not falling over the heels of the hands or exposing wrist bones, while allowing for some drape in the sleeve. 

 

I'll post my images sooner or later, because I think your question's an excellent one, and that here's a perfect place for a gallery of opinions on this topic, and presumably a few fitting "facts", too. but right now's a VERY busy time, sorry!


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#46098 Forty years and ready for more!

Posted by jeffrey2117 on 14 April 2016 - 08:46 AM

Hello All,

 

    This month I am celebrating forty years working at my shop, and thirty years as it's owner!  

 

Each day I look forwards to arriving in the morning, keeping so busy has made the years flow by all too quickly. 

 

I look forwards to the next forty years!  

 

Regards

 

Jeffrey 2117


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#41293 Tailoring Tales.

Posted by MANSIE WAUCH on 13 March 2015 - 07:34 AM

I had occasion to go to Liverpool town centre yesterday.  While I was there I called to see an old tailoring friend of mine who still has a workshop in the town centre. We both served our apprenticeship in the same workshop years ago (55 to be exact. He is due to retire soon.) We got talking over old times, and some of the characters from those days. One story came to mind and we both laughed at the situation that transpired.
A certain trimmings merchant who used to call into the workshop, was well known for his persistence in selling you a bargain, and would pull the wool over your eyes to clinch a sale. One day he called in and tried to sell the boss a very 'exclusive sleeve lining' this lining was not the usual striped lining that most tailors used, but was a very nice plain white satin. The boss admitted, “it was not bad at all, but not what we usually put into our coats” “I can do it for a very good price, if you are interested”, insisted the merchant.
After some lengthy haggling and finely settling on a price, the deal was made. The boss became the owner of several bolts of white sleeve lining, (more than he really needed at the time, but it was a good price he always insisted afterwards.) A few weeks later, another cloth merchant called in with some nice fabrics for sale. During conversation with the boss, the merchant mentioned to the boss.

“ Did you hear about, H**** so and so, trying to sell a load of  'coffin lining' the other week!!!

 

Another old, well known trouser maker, would pawn or sell customers trousers if he was short of money, to pay his rent or staff wages.   When trousers were finished, it was customary to sew the order docket opposite the back pocket with some basting cotton for identification. You knew when the trousers had been stained, scorched or nicked by a careless snip. He would sew the docket over the damage and plead ignorance. There were times when the trousers would be returned with the docket sewn somewhere in the knee region!! 

 

Yet another character, would pay off his debts, (his cutting bill, in my case,) by offering you a selection of books he could obtain from a relative in the book trade. One Christmas, he could not pay his bill, and I threatened to withhold his work if he did not pay up. He begged me to take some books instead. I ended up taking a number of children's books for my youngsters for Christmas.
It was only later on, someone in his lunchtime pub, spilled the beans. (He had a friend worked in the stockroom of a local bookshop, he was  stealing them to order! It all came out when the bookshop did a stock take, and found that someone had done a bigger stock take!)

 

One funny sequel to this story, another tailor, quite a religious man, had asked for a Bible!

 

All these characters have sadly gone to the tailoring workshop in the sky now.


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#40322 Advice on path

Posted by Schneidergott on 20 January 2015 - 05:10 PM

I've been told that, if unsure about a decision, you should toss a coin.

By the time it's up in the air you will know what you hope it will be... :Praying:


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#38662 Tailoring videos

Posted by ChiTownTailor on 29 September 2014 - 02:14 AM

Hi all...
Thought I would share this video. All I hear is: "all made by hand"
What a guy!


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#38602 A little treat: A Ciraci shirt draft from the early 60's

Posted by Schneidergott on 24 September 2014 - 07:11 AM

Hello!

 

I haven't touched that book for a while, but just recently I went through it again and found a shirt draft:

 

Page 1 is mostly about the (proportionate) size of the collars. In the chart you find the following measurements (from left to right): half chest measure, 1/10 of full chest measure, collar width and the corresponding industrial shirt size.

There is a rule saying collar size is half chest minus 1/10 of full chest, but this is only true for sizes (or better half chest) 46 to 52. Below these measures there is 0,5 cm added for every 2 cm step.

For measures above 52 0,5 cm is subtracted for each increase of 2 cm.

15334366222_5bde80e513_o.jpg

 

15147912409_aa7c4577ac_o.jpg

 

15148090158_3c484c099c_o.jpg

 

THE BACK:

 

You start your draft with an angle from  point 1 to the left and down.

 

1 to 1' is 1/10 of the collar width.

1 to 2 is 1/10 of full chest girth plus half of that amount.

2 to 2' is always 10 cm.

1 to 4 is total length ( 1/2 of height minus 3 to 5 cm).

1 to 5 equals distance 1 to 1' plus 3 cm.

5 to 6 is 1/2 of 1 to 1'. Draw the center neck through 6 and continue to hit the top horizontal line.

5 to 8 is like 1 to 2' plus 1,5 or 2 cm.

Point 7 is squared down from 8 to the line coming from 2'.

8 to 9 is 1/3 of 1' to 2 or 1/2 of 1/10 of full chest.

9 to 9' is 4 cm.

2' to 7' is 1/2 of half chest plus 5 to 6 cm. From 7' square down to bottom.

7' to 13 is 1/2 of 1' to 2' plus 8 cm.

13 to 13' is half of 13 to 14 plus 2 cm. From 13 go 1,5 cm inwards for side seam shape.

14 to 15 is like 13' to 14 plus 2 to 3 cm. Shape the bottom as you like.

For the yoke measure from 1' half of 1' to 2 minus 1 cm and square to the left. Form a little dart at the armhole.

 

(It doesn't say so in the instructions but it makes it easier if you continue the horizontal lines from 1 and 2' to the left. I would also suggest to have a squared line through point 13 and continue it to the left. Makes further steps a bit easier, since you don't need to measure the distances in the front part).

 

 

THE FRONT:

 

1 to 2 equals 1 to 5 in the back.

1 to 1' is like 1 to 2 plus ca. 1 cm.

1 to 2' is same as 1' to 2' in the back.

1 to 17 is 1' to 4 in the back minus 5 cm.

2' to 8 equals 2' to 7' in the back.

8 to 13 to 13' is the same as in the back.

2 to 5 is like 5 to 8 in the back minus 1 cm. Square down from 5 to the bottom, creating points 10 and 15.

16 to 15 is 16 to 13 minus 2 cm. Shape the hem as you like.

10 to 11 is 7 to 9 in the back minus 3 cm.

2 to 2'' is 2 cm.

Shape the armholes following the diagram.

From the centre front line (1 to 17) measure 1,7 cm to the left and another 4,5 cm for the fold in button/hole facing.

 

THE SLEEVE:

 

15148584690_2c3c192f66_o.jpg

 

Angle from 1 to left and down.

 

1 to 2 is 9 to 7' in the back (measure diagonally, not along the seam line) plus 2 cm.

1 to 3 is 1/2 of 1 to 2.

2 to 4 equals 2 to 3.

connect 1 and 4 with a straight line, 5 is at the middle.

6 is 1/2 of 3 to 5. Draw crown as shown in diagram through point 6.

1 to 7 is sleeve length plus 4 cm, minus the height of the cuff.

7 to 8 is 1 to 3 plus 5 to 6 cm.

8 to 9 is 1/2 7 to 8.

9 to 10 equals 1 to 5.

 

I find that the shape of the crown should not be the same in front and back, but it's up to you (it needs to be higher in the front and lower/ flatter in the back to follow the shapes of the front and rear armholes, which have different curves).


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#34635 A trouser draft

Posted by MANSIE WAUCH on 08 August 2013 - 07:33 AM



I have reproduced my trouser draft on youtube in a way that might be better for beginners to understand. (just type in youtube, basic trouser draft (gents).)

I apologise in advance for the poor graphics, as it was all done with bitmap graphics.

If anyone can recommend a vector graphics programme that will do the same images (very cheap) I would be obliged.

SG if you are on line I hope you will do the honours. (it's OK I have managed it myself, Lord knows how?)

If you change to youtube to view it you can view at a larger screen)

(I'm getting good at this video lark! Not bad for a 71 year old.)

Mansie.
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#44252 Shirt Draft - Unicut 1975

Posted by Schneiderfrei on 19 September 2015 - 10:10 PM

The Shirt

 

http://www.intermode...73-74_klein.pdf

 

From Page 154

 

In a rather classical style, but without a shoulder blade fold, this shirt is quite close to the body; yet it having the necessary ease in the back.

 

The measurements:

 

Chest                     – 50 

Scye Depth           – 23 ½  (scye depth is a calculated measurement: ¼ chest + ¼ waist length (see page 154 of Intermode 1973-1974). it also can be measured from the neck point to a strip of folded paper which is clamped under the arm in the highest possible position and folded horizontally to centre back. (Actual scye depth will be 2cm lower(W....O).)

Waist length:         – 44 ½ (calculation formula: 1/4 height)

Length:                  – 80

Back Width:           – 20 ½ (formula: 1/4 chest + 8cm front)

Chest Width:            20 (formula: 1/2 chest – 5cm)

Neck:                     – 41

Sleeve length       – 60 (outer length of from armhole seam to wrist)

 

Unicut%20Shirt%20Fig%206_zpsxcpyiovp.jpg

 

Fig. 6 Drafts of Back and Front parts

 

A...A1         = 1/6 the Neck + ½ cm (In this case 7 ¼ cm)
A...W         = 1/3 of A...A1

W...O         = Scye Depth + 2 cm (25 ½ cm)

W...T          = Waist length + 2 cm (46 ½ cm)
W...L          = Length (80 cm)
O...O1        = Back Width + 2 cm (22 ½ cm)
A3              = vertical from O1

A3...S        = 1/5 of A3...O1 — 1 cm (4 ½ cm)

A1...A2      = 1 cm (Shoulder line from A2 Across, Passing S)

S...S1         = 2 cm

01...02        = ¼ of the Chest Width (12 ½ cm)

A4               = vertical from O2, 2 cm lower than A3

O2...O3      =  Chest Width + ½ cm (20 ½ cm)

A6...L2       = vertical to O3

A6...C         = same amount as A...A1 (Draw a circle with centre point A6)

A7               = 1 cm beyond the circle line

C1              = ½ cm below the circle line.

 

The entire neck seam (W...A1 + A7...C1) should almost be the Neck width of 41 cm.  At the same time any occurring difference has to be eliminated by adjusting the height of A7.

 

A7...S2        = Same width as A2…S1

O2...S2        = O1   S1 – 2 cm

 

Side Seam: O4 lies 1 cm in front of the middle of O1...O2. Draw a vertical midline; remove 1,5cm at waist depth narrowing into the hem. (I.e.: shape the actual side seam lines, hollowing 1,5cm on both sides at the waistline and tapering to 0cm at the hemline.)

 

Front Edge (overlap) extends 2cm from centre front line.

 

Yoke: the yoke seam is measured down: 3 cm from A7 and S2: 5 cm from S1: 6 cm from W: The shoulder blade dart (A1...A2) is vertical and tapering to the yoke seam, and will be folded/pinched away.

 

Drawing upper right cornerTo form the yoke join the shoulder lines A2..S1 and A7...S2.  The back yoke seam curves out ½ cm between the arm scye and the folded dart line.  Hollow both front yoke seams ½ cm at the first third.

 

Unicut%20Shirt%20Fig%207_zps6gbclqdu.jpg

 

Fig. 7 The sleeve

 

K...P = Centre line: outer sleeve length minus 7 cm cuff width (at P: square out to both sides)

K lies in the middle between S1 and S2 at the armscye of the pattern.

K...m = half height of O4...K of the armscye (square line)

K...U7 rear armhole circumference from S1…O4

K...U6 front armhole circumference from S2…O4

Sleeve Cap: in the rear the upper third curves out 2 cm, in the front lower third a 1 cm hollow.

P...P6 and P...P7: 15 cm each (straight seam lines to U6 and U7)

The Rear Slit lies 6 cm inside P7 and is 10 cm long.

Left and right of the slit are lying with each 2 cm distance and each 2 cm deep folds.  The cuff is 26 cm long and 7 cm wide.

 

Unicut%20Shirt_zpsfima1ut0.jpg

 

Fig. 8 back, front and Yoke (Göller)

 

Not only the contour of the sides seams but also the contour of the yoke seams of the pattern pieces have to match exactly.

 

Fig. 8 to 11: The Collar

 

It can be worked with a separate stand or as a one-piece collar.  In the latter case though there is a condition, that the rear collar width (K2... K4) is ½ cm higher than the collar stand (W...K2)

 

Unicut%20Fig%208_zpskybkzcdm.jpg

 

Fig. 8: the Collar Stand

 

A...C           = half collar width (20 ½ cm)

C...C1         = ½ cm

C...3            = 3 cm

A...W          = 1 ½ cm

W...K2        = 3 ½ cm

C1...C2       = 2 ½ cm, right angle to the line 3...C1

Extension of the collar stand seam C1: 2cm, (it’s the same amount that the front edge extends past the centre front CF)

 

Unicut%20Fig%209_zpsuph1lav4.jpg

 

Fig. 9: The One Piece Collar

 

K2...K4       = 4 cm (= ½ cm more than W...K2)

C5               = ca. 4 cm outside C1

C5...K5      = ca. 10 cm

 

Unicut%20Fig%2010_zpsr2tbaaii.jpg

 

Fig. 10: Preparation for the two piece collar

 

Here K2…K4 is more than ½ cm wider than the collar foot (stand);

Therefore the outer edge of the collar would be too short compared to a one-piece collar.  Parallel to CB, K2...K4, lines are drawn 3 cm apart.

 

Unicut%20Fig%2011_zpsetrnszvr.jpg

 

Fig. 11: Collar with a separate stand

 

After the collar fold line is cut off (line K2...C2), the three lines are slashed to the collar fold line, and opened at the outer edge by about a third each of the missing amount (Total extension: the amount, that K2...K4 is wider than W...K2).

 

With all Cutting Diagrams:
 

Seam Allowances MUST be Added


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#41389 Shirt Sleeve Draft Review

Posted by Terri on 17 March 2015 - 09:05 PM

Setting up the sleeve draft by starting with a centre line, determining depth of crown then measuring 1/2 of the scye on the diagonal to find the width, is an easy and simple way to construct the sleeve draft.
The issue is mtching the shape of the sleeve to the armhole in the manner that makes sense for the garment.

So if you start off with a traditional shirt sleeve that will be sewn in flat, you can draft it out, with your choice of method, then measure it and determine how much ease you have. Where is the ease required? Mostly at the top, over the shoulder, a tidge in the back, nothing at the front under the arm.
On the body pattern measure from the underarm point to mid back and either use a given pitch point or create a point to match to the sleeve.
Measure the back curve of the sleeve and mark the point to match, allowing that bit of ease.
Stop and do the same on the front, measure the body, use a given pitch point or create one and measure the sleeve, marking the matching point.
Do you have a shoulder matching point or will you use the yoke?
Either way, measure the remaining area of the back, and apply that to the sleeve, but allowing some of your ease in this area, then do the same with the front.
Try putting your sleeve in. Is it working? Yes good, no, modify.

If the body is close fitting, and the shape of the armhole differs greatly (is more shaped in the front) then your sleeve shape needs to be more shaped, maybe flatter at the back and more hollowed out in front to allow for ease of movement in the back and to reduce excess fabric in the front.
There is a point though that the sleeve cap become too high to put in flat.
The key is to marry the shape and fit of the body to the sleeve, so a overly fitted body needs a differently shaped sleeve.
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#41187 The Art of Making Buttonholes

Posted by littlemind on 05 March 2015 - 08:33 AM

Rory Duffy has recently published a video of him making a buttonhole on his vimeo stream:

 


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#40142 The Modern Sakko, 1916

Posted by Der Zuschneider on 26 December 2014 - 05:35 AM

Das moderne Sakko, Schneidermeister #16, 1922

 

I have restored those pictures for everybody to practice old cutting. 

 

My Christmas gift for all beginners.

Sakko1916_1_zps5cead872.jpg

 

Sakko1916_2_zpsc87d45ad.jpg

 

Masssatz:

Koerperhoehe/Body hight: 172cm

Oberweite/Chest:                 92cm

Unterweite/Waist                  82cm

Gesaessweite/Hip                98cm

 

Coat length = 1/2 Body hight - 8.0cm

 

Improvements:

H - A   = 1/4 chest + 1.25

z - M   = 1/8 chest + 2.0

F - FF = 1/4 waist + 1.0

G - C  = 1/4 chest - 1.0

A - G  = 1/4AB

Di - e  = 1.5cm

 

Lapel dart only 2.0cm, 4cm is too big

Front neck tip is straight like today!


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#39863 Why you shouldn't start coat making topics in the Basic Apprentices'...

Posted by Henry Hall on 09 December 2014 - 06:24 AM

Which is another way of saying: "you will never learn to make a coat", since if a person is here looking for some help, they're clearly not getting it anywhere else.

 

Fair enough, I've never broken the rule anyway and don't intend to.

 

What is a bit mystifying though is the attitude that cutting and tailoring is so impossible to learn outside an apprenticeship - to some level - as compared to the dozens and dozens of other crafts represented by online forums, websites or blogs. Crafts that are equally complicated and require skill.

 

As it happens, my grandfather taught himself violin making while he worked as a miner. In his 40s he gave up mining and went to work for an instrument maker without having been apprenticed to anyone. Now I'm sure he learned new things while working, but getting there in the first place was the challenge. Maybe he was talented. Maybe some people here are talented, but how will anyone ever know?


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#37733 Learning to Tailor by Self Tuition- (Beginners Please Read)

Posted by Rory Duffy on 10 July 2014 - 11:51 AM

As someone who trains apprentices I can say that even with a good master it does take a considerable time to learn this trade. I would say at least three years to learn coat making, two years to learn trousers and two years to learn pattern cutting & fitting.
Tailoring isn't easy, an old master of mine would say "The day you stop learn in this trade is the day you die". It takes a lifetime to prefect ones skills.
As a tailor who makes everything in-house, spending my days jumping between trouser making, waistcoats, coats, evening tails and morning coats, I am sure glad I spent seven years under professional tailors learning the craft while assisting my masters.

It's difficult to find training, I accept so many requests it's seem like an open door policy. Most stay for about a year or a semester before moving on. Each apprentice gets a portion of my time and tasks to complete just as I did during my training.

Through the video series I hope I am assisting other enthusiast learn some of the key skills and a taste of the assembly process. The next episode, the first in the new season is "the draft". I have yet to see the final cut, hope you all like how it turns out.
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#36449 "Tailoring Tutorials" on Youtube

Posted by Rory Duffy on 11 February 2014 - 01:03 PM

You might want to check out my new video, 'How to use a Needle & Thimble':

 

 

Still working on the buttonhole video and pattern drafting, my assistant is working hard to get these videos ready for you all soon.


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#20408 Pocket Cutter's Practical Guide 17th ed. PDF

Posted by J. Maclochlainn on 09 March 2011 - 01:43 AM

Ok here's another PDF book for you folks. A week and a half of scanning, cleaning, altering and fixing. So here you have the complete
17th Edition of the Pocket CPG by Morris. This is circa 1955-1959, the library stamp states April 1959.

I altered the scans to print to actual book size of 4.5 x 7 inches @ 200dpi. It can be printed to US or A4 with just a little fuzz.

Clicky here

Password: Morris (case sensitive)
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