Jump to content

Most Liked Content

#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...


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.






18th Century Costumes
1944 Schnittmusterzeichnungen Wäsche und Kleider
Ancient Egyptian, Assyrian and Persian Costumes
Book of Sewing
Codex de Manesse
Comedia dell arte
Das Buch der Hausschneiderei
Der moderne Zuschnitt
Die Zuschnediekunst 1927
Die Hohe Kunst der Kleidermacher
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
Röcke und Hosen Damen
Trachen Damen
Trachten Herren
Atelier 2
Fachwissen Herren
Historisch Damen
Historisch Herren
Jacken und Mäntel Damen
Jacken und Mäntel Herren


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

  • tailleuse, SealKing, zanzare and 24 others like this

#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.

  • pfaff260, tailleuse, SPOOKIETOO and 19 others like this

#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>.


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:



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)”

#5897 MTOC

Posted by Alexander on 14 January 2010 - 03:45 AM

Who here is looking for "The Modern Tailor, Outfitter and Clothier"?

I would like the information contained in these rare books to be more readily available to everyone on this forum, which is why I scanned them.

Here is the first volume, enjoy.

Also, I will scan the other books if people want me to. I may also touch up the first volume scans at a later date.

Attached Files

  • Kerry, scissorhand, tsch and 17 others like this

#49756 Learn the Secrets of a Master Tailor Online

Posted by Rory Duffy on 08 January 2019 - 12:45 AM

Dear All.


As I am sure most of you are aware, I moved back to Ireland from New York in 2016 to start my own school of tailoring, The Handcraft Tailor Academy. I am proud to say that so far it has been a great success and I have no regrets leaving New York behind and moving to the tranquil Irish countryside. In the past year I have completed my drafting book 'Pattern Drafting for Bespoke Menswear, the Imperial System' and added a number of new online courses, which have allowed so many people to learn tailoring skills, that may have otherwise eluded them. 


Like so many, my online students would love to take the time and career break necessary to join me on one of my in-house courses, immersing themselves in the magical world of tailoring, devoid of outside influences and distractions. Alas not everyone can take the time away from their commitments and responsibilities, so I have introduced a number of online options, so that you too can learn a new skill, from the comfort of your own home.


The first course I offered in-house back when I launched The Handcraft Tailor Academy and welcomed my then student and now good friend Tom Bennett to Ireland, was Pattern Drafting for Bespoke Menswear. This course is also available online as a ten week program with two one hour lessons per week. Backed up by my new book of the same name, live one to one demonstrations over Skype video calls and the option to record the lesson for future learning, it is certainly a good rival to the in-house course. Students are encouraged to mail their patterns in weekly for assessment and some much needed feed back on their progression. This course covers everything from taking Measurements, to Figuration, Pattern Manipulation & Alteration, Coat, Waistcoat, Overcoat and Trouser Drafts for Regular and Disproportionate figures.


As the thirst for knowledge from my international students seemed unquenchable and video series seemed so impersonal I bowed to demand and now offer online making courses too. Supported by trimming packages from Dugdale Brothers in Huddersfield England, students can be reassured that when they take my online making course their raw materials are an exact match to the ones I am using during all of our lessons. Whether its my 'Waistcoat Making the Savile Row Method' or 'Men's Bespoke Trouser Making' course, you decide what size and style you would like me to demonstrate. Perhaps you've always wondered how I draft and make my signature Trousers, Brace-top, half band with full extensions or would like the emulate a style you have seen in a Hollywood production or BBC series. 


I work with all my students to give them a unique learning experience and not limit them to my own style and preferences.


Alas Coat making is too broad and complex to offer through live demonstrations, after almost twelve months of filming, I can now say with confidence I am only weeks away from launching my new and complete video series 'The making of a Handcraft Coat'. Unlike my last video series this is a how-to series and covers every step in depth and is also backed up with a trimming package from Dugdale Brothers. Once this series is complete it will be available to view on my website.


If you would like to find out more about the courses available from The Handcraft Tailor Academy please visit my website www.Handcrafttailor.com where I have listed all the courses available until the Summer of 2019, under the heading "COURSES".


If you have any comments or suggestions I would love to hear from you and you can contact me directly on Roryduffybespoke@gmail.com


All the best for 2019, keep sewing.



  • Bobbie, Schneiderfrei, Simiquaver and 17 others like this

#49812 Post a link to your work

Posted by J. Maclochlainn on 21 February 2019 - 05:48 AM

Weve not done anything fun on here in awhile. So lets see what youve been working on and show off your work! If you have an instragram share it for others to see.

My Instagram is lachlan_bespoke
  • jojo remeny, Schneiderfrei, creatieve mie and 15 others like this

#40911 Two more pairs finished.

Posted by hutch48 on 23 February 2015 - 11:24 AM

I have been a bit busy lately in the software area but made the time to finish off 2 more pairs of shears, Wiss 3 and Heinisch 9 models. The Wiss are in very good nick for their age and size, most small Wiss shears have been worn out. The Heinisch 15 inch number 9 are just within the weight range to use as general purpose shears, the next size up weigh like a pair of barbells.
The heinisch 9s were bought from a dealer in St Pauls Minesota and came from a farm up near the Canadian border. They had never been sharpened and apart from being a bit rusty, were mechanically sound and in good condition.
Wiss 3.
Heinisch 9.

  • Alfye, cperry, Henry Hall and 15 others like this

#40713 Big iron, Wiss 10 15.5 inch shears.

Posted by hutch48 on 15 February 2015 - 09:55 AM

I have used this pair for some time, mainly for cutting fleece for winter weight track pants and had never been able to put them aside to finish them off but as I will not be needing them for a couple of months until it starts to get colder here, I have finished them off by preparing and painting the handles. I was held up here because my dremel style power tool gave up the ghost and would only run at maximum speed.


I bit the bullet and bought myself a brand new Dremel 4000 which is a really nice gadget for doing some of this work. It allowed me to finish off the finger loops that were too hard to finish with a file and further sanding. Polished handles may look nice but they are a pain to keep in good condition without them going rusty, the win with the paint if you get it right is they feel much the same as polished metal to use but don't go rusty.


The paint I used is a 2 pack polyurethane that is designed to be put on reasonably thick and once it has been on for a couple of weeks it sets nearly as hard as glass. I learnt the hard way not to hang them upside down as the paint set as you get runs in the wrong place. You still get a few sags here and there but as the old timers were the same, its not like it matters much.


They are too big for delicate work but cutting double layer fleece they have no peers, precise, fast and reasonably low effort to cut heavy bulky material.





  • MANSIE WAUCH, Alfye, ChiTownTailor and 15 others like this

#42426 Kinetic Garment Construction - Remarks on The Foundations of Pattern Cutting

Posted by Rickard on 05 May 2015 - 06:50 PM

I would like to share my recent PhD thesis and open up for a discussion around it.


Best regards

Rickard Lindqvist



Fashion designers are presented with a range of different methods for pattern cutting, and the interest in this field has grown rapidly over the past few years. This growth is both due to the publication of a number of works dealing with the subject in different ways and the fact that a growing number of designers emphasise cutting in their creative practices. 

Though a range of methods and concepts for pattern cutting are presented, the main body of these methods, both traditional and contemporary, is predominately based on a theoretical approximation of the body that is derived from horizontal and vertical measurements of the body in an upright position: the tailoring matrix. As a consequence, there is a lack of interactive and dynamic qualities in methods connected to this paradigm of garment construction, from both expressional and functional perspectives.

This work proposes and explores an alternative paradigm for pattern cutting that includes a new theoretical approximation of the body as well as a more kinetic method for garment construction that, unlike the prevalent theory and its related methods, takes as its point of origin the interaction between the anisotropic fabric and the biomechanical structure of the body. As such, the research conducted here is basic research, aiming to identify fundamental principles for garment construction.

Based on some key principles found in the works of Geneviève Sevin-Doering and in pre-tailoring methods for constructing garments, the proposed theory for – and method of – garment construction was developed through concrete experiments by cutting and draping fabrics on live models.

Instead of a static matrix of a non-moving body, the result is a kinetic construction theory of the body that is comprised of balance directions and key biomechanical points, along with an alternative draping method for dressmaking. This methodology challenges the fundamental relationship between dress, garment construction, and the body, working from the body outward, as opposed to the methods that are based on the prevalent paradigm of the tailoring matrix, which work from the outside toward the body. This alternative theory for understanding the body and the proposed method of working allows for diverse expressions and enhanced functional possibilities in dress.


Thesis is availble as a PDF from:


  • Pecialinda, Alievens, Henry Hall and 14 others like this

#41972 Posting Images

Posted by MANSIE WAUCH on 17 April 2015 - 06:15 AM

I don't know if anyone knows about this, I discovered it by accident. If you edit one of your posts, when the editor is open, click on advanced editing, and you will find the 'file attachment' function, as in your email attachments!  (of course you will have to create your post first, then edit it for your image.


While I am at it, someone, I think it was 'Taileuse' was asking about a tailoring course breakdown. Hope these show you what is expected! Taken from an old City & Guilds course booklet




Mansie the old computer nerd!

Attached Files

  • Attached File  001.jpg   91.06KB   2 downloads
  • Attached File  002.jpg   64.92KB   1 downloads
  • Attached File  003.jpg   100.24KB   1 downloads
  • Attached File  004.jpg   37.89KB   1 downloads
  • Attached File  005.jpg   91.58KB   0 downloads
  • Attached File  006.jpg   55.43KB   0 downloads

  • tailleuse, Learner, cperry and 14 others like this

#40292 A tailor's tools.

Posted by hutch48 on 15 January 2015 - 01:25 PM

I needed to test out a new camera today so on the way to do some shopping I stopped in to see a tailor I have known for many years and photographed the machines he has in the back of his shop. He mainly does alterations these days but is a genuine pro, does lovely work and can size up a customer as they come in the door. As you can see these machines are in use and the place generally looked like most tailor's shops I have seen.












  • sewbot, tailleuse, Schneiderfrei and 14 others like this

#37308 Painting the handles on restored shears.

Posted by hutch48 on 13 May 2014 - 12:21 AM

The shears in the photo are the pair of Simmons Keen Kutter that as best as I can tell were a job lot made for Simmons Tool Company by Wiss somewhere around WW1. The engineering work in regrinding the blades and shimming the hinge were straight forward enough but to finish the shears off the handles needed to be painted. I don't particularly like playing with paint as it is a different brain to engineering but after experimenting with enamels first which were not hard enough then trying a one pack spray epoxy which was OK but not really robust enough for regular use, I chased up the technical data on 2 pack paints and was talked into (by the chemist at the paint company) a 2 pack polyurethane.


The prep is important in that it must be scrupulously clean and smooth enough to feel OK in your hands when using them. On this pair I bothered to fine finish the handles, partly by machine process and by hand then sandblasted them with a fine sandblast so that it did not leave a rough surface. The sandblasting both gives you a perfect clean surface and a surface the keys the paint properly so the adhesion is good. The paint cost me $100.00 AU after delivery so you don't waste it. I bought a few medium sized art brushes then mixed the 2 pack in a small china container (bought from the local Chinese bargain shop) then carefully brushed a thin coat to wet the surface followed by the heaviest coat I could get on it without too many runs. The design of the paint from the chemist was to get enough on to get the film strength.


It takes about 24 hours to be touch dry, a week before it robust and after a month it sets like glass as it cures chemically, not by air drying like most single pack paints. I kept the residue of the paint in the small china container to test how hard the mix set and as it set hard in about a week, the coating on the handles seemed to set OK as well.


Something that is importand is to get the old paint off, generally it is no longer sound and over-painting it truly looks like crap. The technique I have found works best is an old speedbore that has sharp edges on it and I used that to scrape off almost all of the paint on the handles. I use a sharp screwdriver for the odd awkward bits then  filed and sanded the result until it was smooth enough to paint.


For what its worth, I also did the handles on a pair of Wiss number 5 shears (13 inch) and only scraped off the paint and sandblasted them and they turned out nearly as good as the Simmons pair as the paint both fills and levels well. The advantage of using a very hard paint is the feel much like polished handles but without the irritation of them going rusty if you forget to oil them.


Just be careful about the sandblasting, I own a pair of Heinisch number 8 (14.5 inch) that were "restored" with a very coarse sandblasted finish and while I could un-restore the blades OK, the handles would take some massive amount of work to clean them up as the coarse sandblasted finish ripped the guts out of the handles and they have heavy pitting all over the handles. Stick to a very fine grit if you have the option and you will get much better results.





  • tailleuse, Alfye, jeffrey2117 and 14 others like this

#144 Textbooks on Cutting and Tailoring in French and Italian

Posted by Nishijin on 14 April 2009 - 11:31 PM

Here are a few books I know of in French :
(I have only a few of them, I found the others in books catalogues, but could not trace an edition of them yet).

Méthode de coupe pour hommes
Manuel Ladeveze-Darroux,

This is the book everyone interested in French Tailoring should have, so I list it first. M. Darroux was the owner and manager of the Académie Internationale de Coupe de Paris (Paris International Academy of Cut), where a lot of parisian cutters and tailors were (and still are) trained. The school was established in 1830, and the first edition of the guide is from 1860.

This method had many editions, the latest ones begin available from Editions Vauclair. Titles changed with time :

Méthode de Coupe pour Hommes
- 1860 (1st ed.) : Author : F. Ladevèze - ASIN ?

Cours de coupe du tailleur de Paris, ou l'Art d'apprendre à couper et confectionner les habits d'après le système actuel de mesurage
- 1874 (4th ed.), Author : F. Ladevèze - ASIN: B001C6L1HC

Méthode de coupe du tailleur de Paris : Ou Art d'apprendre à couper et confectionner tous les vêtements, d'après le système créé en 1860, par F. Ladevèze, modernisé et perfectionné par A. Darroux, modernisée par J. Darroux :
- 19? (12th ed.) - ASIN ?
- 1945 (14th ed.) - ASIN: B001D4PQCY
- ? 16e édition revue et augmentée, spécialement consacrée aux vêtements pour dames - ASIN : B001D4RAKK
- 1950 (18th ed.) - vêtements pour dame - ASIN : B001D4WSSE

Méthode de coupe du tailleur de Paris : Selon les principes modernisés du système Ladevèze-Darroux.
- 1952 (20e édition) - ASIN : B0017ZUSEU
- 1963 (22e édition) - ASIN : B0014UNLRY
- 1964 (23e édition pour dames) Ed. Bureaux d'éditions et académie de coupe Sens - ASIN : B0014UQZNG

Modern editions (2005, Ed. Vauclair) are in several volumes :
several books :
- Méthode de tracé des vêtements masculins classiques
- Méthode de tracé des vêtements masculins sportsware (vol. I & II)
- Méthode de tracés Vêtements féminins Classiques
- Méthode de tracés Vêtements féminins Classiques et Sportswear
- Méthode de gradation pour homme et garçonnet

In the 1950s, there was a by-product as an alteration method :
Méthode Ladevèze-Darroux. Essayages et retouches : Ou l'Art d'essayer et retoucher tous les vêtements
- ? - 2e édition - ASIN : B0017ZNGYY
- Modern edition : Méthode de retouche hommes et femmes (2 vol : pièces à manches / jupes & pantalons)

For all I know, this book is still the professional reference today in Paris, on which many professional base their own method. Old editions can sometimes be found on Ebay and in old books stores. Modern editions are available to order on the Vauclair web site.

La Coupe : Intéressant les tailleurs, tailleuses, couturiers, couturières, chemisiers et tout ce qui a rapport à l'habillement
1914, Association des professeurs de coupe, Paris

Méthode pratique de coupe par les mesures
Author : J. Bentayou - circa 1890

A guide to draw gentlemen garments, including :
The differents measures to take, drawing the back, the side body and the front of the frock coat, patterns for the “jaquette droite” (Newmarket coat ?), the lounge coat (SB & DB), alterations for bent & erect man, the morning coat & dress coat skirt, the overcoat, the ladies vest, the sleeve for men & ladies, the ladies coat, the vest, the trousers & breeches.

This method is very practical, as it is easy to draw a pattern following it, but I could not understand the underlaying system : I found it impractical to cut anything else than the included coats, and could not use it to draw a modern lounge coat.

Nouveau livre du tailleur - traité complet de la coupe des vêtements d'homme
Author : Thirifoc - 1881
Ed : Imprimerie typographique de Félix Malteste & Cie.
34 plates, 134 drawings & patterns
Interesting book, including : body & skirt base pattern, pants pattern, modifications to different body shapes, gaiters, livery garments, clergy & law robes, uniforms, use of the body pattern to draw many coats and overcoats, and a few words about ladies tailored garments.
At the end of the book, the author summers some other cutting systems used in Paris, including the Compaing method (DeVere trained under Compaing).

I like this book, and used it to draft my own patterns (except for the sleeves, which are awful by today standards).

Le Livre tailleur, enseignant la coupe des vêtements en quinze minutes avec démonstrations et en une heure sans maître
Jules Despax de Samatan, 1871

I would love to find this one ! How to become a cutter in 15 minutes ! Why spend 15 years as an apprentice in Savile Row ? This book is 35000 times faster ! frantics.gif

Le Trésor du tailleur, ou la Coupe infaillible, nouveau système de coupe appliqué, depuis 1859, par Eugène Lejeune
Eugène Lejeune, 1863
Ed. Impr. de G. Jacob

Manuel théorique et pratique à l'usage des tailleurs, pour la coupe des vêtements d'hommes, contenant 81 planches
Siegwald père et fils, 1856

Les Mystères de l'art du tailleur, ou la Coupe géométrique dévoilée
Eugène Staube, 1845
Ed. Appert
ASIN: B001BP7E52

Livre du tailleur, guide complet du tracé de la coupe et de la façon des vêtements, par M. Augustin Canneva, Suivi de l'hygiène du tailleur, par M. Monneret
Ed. A.-L. Pagnerre

Art du tailleur – contenant le tailleur d’habits d’hommes, les culottes de peau, le tailleur de corps de femmes & enfants, la couturière et la marchande de mode
M. de Garsault, Académie Royale des Sciences, 1769
An interesting book about the cutting & tailoring of French garments of the XVIIth century (Louis XV period).
It was included in a series of books by the Royal Academy of Science, describing the crafts of the time.

Those books are only about cutting, I did not find yet a French book about tailoring, but there should be some.
I've heard of the book La coupe tailleur, éditions Time-Life, from 1975, which I understood include something on how to make a coat. But I never saw it, I just found it listed on some blogs.

  • Sator, tailleuse, Oliveira and 14 others like this

#13578 Pocket Making

Posted by MANSIE WAUCH on 12 September 2010 - 06:01 AM

I am attempting to post up a complete book on pocket making.

I am attempting a complete download in one hit! I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Here goes!


Oh! bugger?
  • tailleuse, SPOOKIETOO, Jeff Asvalt and 14 others like this

#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:



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. 

  • Katherine Maylin, Hanna, sewbot and 13 others like this

#36665 Needles needles needles !!!

Posted by hutch48 on 12 March 2014 - 02:18 PM

Sorry about the excess enthusiasm but I have been looking for decent needles for a long time and have at last hit the big time. I found a company in Melbourne Australia called Ebony Craft who carry a range of HEMLINE needles so I bought the gold eyed version of the darners (my hands are too big for the delicate fiddly ones) and they are actually sharp and well finished. Did a quick test sewing on a button (which is what I use needles for) and they are smooth and sharp and make sewing on buttons easy at last.

  • tailleuse, ladhrann, cperry and 13 others like this

#36048 New Book on Pattern Cutting for Menswear

Posted by Tony Rutherford on 31 December 2013 - 02:04 AM

Hello All,


Has anyone used this book?



Pattern Cutting for Menswear 

by Gareth Kershaw 


I've just ordered it, so am naturally very excited about a contemporary English language text book on cutting for men.



  • tailleuse, jeffrey2117, napoli and 13 others like this

#48740 Charity voting, please take part

Posted by tailor_s on 28 November 2017 - 02:00 AM

My contribution to the charity @Licht ins Dunkel (Bring light into the dark)
Please vote ...
Preferably for the number 026,
or whatever you like ...

  • pfaff260, jeffrey2117, checkvilMuh and 12 others like this

#37045 Making a shim for Heinisch/Wiss shears.

Posted by hutch48 on 21 April 2014 - 04:16 PM

I seem to get asked on a regular basis about the shims you use to space a normal Wiss or Heinisch hinge. It requires someone who is a bit handy with hand tools and a grasp of how to do basic things but its not rocket science, if you know how to use hand tools and are a little bit patient, you can get very good results. This is the technique I use to shim old shears that have worn hinge faces.


These are the tools I use, you can do some of these things in different way but these are the ones that I use.




From left to right, a piece of sheet brass, in this case a half millimetre thick. The tool with the point on it is a bearing scraper to deburr the hole. There are other ways to do this but this is what I use. 2 different sized tapered reamers that you enlarge the hole with until it is the right size. A hand file to tidy up the outside edges when the shim is near finished, a pair of tinsnips, in this case a pair of old Footprint crank handle snips and lastly a hole punch that I bought on eBay a couple of years ago for making the initial hole.




The left image shows the initial hole done with the hole punch. If you don't have a hole punch you can drill the hole starting with a small drill and carefully going a bit larger. Just be careful not to let the drill snatch the brass sheet. The right hand side image is the tapered reamer used to enlarge the hole. You can just rough out the hole until it is close to the diameter of the shear bolt but be careful when it is up near the right size. It works best if you get the shim to fit accurately to the shear bolt diameter.




Deburr the hole after you have it to size then place the shear bolt in position and scribe around the outside flange. When this is done it should look like the right side image. This is the visual guide to cut the shim diameter to. NOTE that is is important to deburr the hole so that the shim fits properly, if you don't remove the burr it effects the spacing of the shim when assembled.




There are a few tricks when trimming the outside to the scribed line, normally when you cut sheet metal with tinsnips you get some curling of the sheet being cut. The trick here to minimise the effect is to cut around the outside diameter in the same direction at uniform intervals. I have used a normal right hand pair of tinsnips and have cut from the right hand side with each cut being approximately 45 degrees apart as in the left side image. Once you have this done, you go over the shim and cut each point off on the scribed line so that you have a nearly round shim with very little curling.




Use your hand file to finally round the edges and what you end up with is a high precision flat shim that takes up the wear in an old pair of shears.


  • Schneiderfrei, checkvilMuh, Ridgelap and 12 others like this

#36277 Shears for a tailor.

Posted by hutch48 on 23 January 2014 - 07:43 PM

This pair of Wiss 5N shears were rescued from the wilds of Arizona, they had one tip slightly damaged (used to open a paint tin or similar) and one of the blades was covered in epoxy but both the blades and hinge were sound and had never been reground so they had full sized blades. usual repairs, stripped the rust and paint off them, hollow ground the blades, took the bare minimum off the cutting edges then spent a long time (while watching a couple of movies) cleaning up the handles and polishing them.


This is normally done as prep for paint before you sand blast them but the new owner preferred them polished so they ended up this way. The date from after WW2, probably in the middle 1950s and while they are not collectors items, they have very good metallurgy, they are nice and chunky and have enough grunt to be used by a production cutter.


If you can score a pair of these that have not been knackered or worn out they are very good value, they have a steel hinge that is very reliable and reasonably easy to adjust and excellent blades.




  • tatiebogle, EleanorRigby, checkvilMuh and 12 others like this