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Old 01-06-2011, 02:34 PM   #1
trvvn5
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Resources for design.
So I'm starting to get tired of knitting other people's patterns. I think I would like to start designing my own patterns and things. I was wondering if anyone knew of any resources on how to design your own patterns.

The things that I am most concerned with are things like fit and proportions. For example, how long should the body of a bottom up sweater be before you start the arm holes. I've never sewn anything so the idea of construction is not something I'm greatly familiar with, other than following other people patterns.

I don't think that I need help with getting differnt pattern embellishment ideas. I have tons of patterns on how to make leaves, or lace, or cables. I need something that is going to show me how to make an actual garment and what the proportion and construction should be. I hope that I'm making sense. Any ideas?
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Old 01-06-2011, 03:01 PM   #2
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Anything by Elizabeth Zimmerman will help you learn construction, her Percentage sweaters are knit bottom up and the numbers use a percentage of the chest measurement to knit with. The Sweater Workshop by Jacqueline Fee uses her methods and details them a bit more. Knitting from the Top down by Barbara Walker will explain several methods for knitting not just raglan or yoke sweaters, but set in sleeves too. She also has 4 stitch dictionaries. Custom Knits (Wendy Bernard I think) has a few patterns with some info on how to change them and change any pattern; the back has a brief overview of the BW book. Finally I think there's Sweater Design in Plain English by Maria Righetti (sp?). Any of these can usually be found or requested through your local library so you can look through them to see which you'd like to purchase.

The EZ books also give 'recipes' and construction techniques for hats, vests, shawls, mittens, blankets, baby leggings and other useful items.
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Old 01-06-2011, 03:22 PM   #3
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Thanks suzeeq, thats a ton of information.
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Old 01-06-2011, 04:17 PM   #4
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Wait till you check out the books...!
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Old 01-06-2011, 05:01 PM   #5
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Lol! I've sewn a lot of stuff. Are you knitting for yourself/friends/family or knitting general sizes for a large amount of different kinds of people? If you're knitting for friends/self/family, you can always make a cheap dress form by having them wear a t-shirt they don't want anymore, then putting duct tape around them where the shirt is so that it fits snug, then cutting up the back, removing it (and the now-ruined shirt) taping it shut, taping the arm and neck holes so the holes are covered (without crimping them) filling it with any kind of stuffing (stuffing, newspaper, whatever) and closing up the bottom the same way you closed the neck/arms. Likewise, you could do it the other way and close up the bottom first. You can use this to make paper pattern pieces and see what shape(s) you'll need to make. You can also take measurements. There should be some in-depth sewing guides or knitting ones online that will help you know where you should measure on a person. With their measurements, you can make a pattern. I'm figuring you're an advanced knitter and know how to increase/decrease and how that looks on the pattern, so you should be able to figure out stuff with the measurements. Also, you need to keep in mind if the item(s) will fit the person's curves or be more straight and just drape on them. Half of construction is design, really.

Btw, here is Burda's online pictorial of how to measure someone for a fit... http://www.burdastyle.com/techniques...asure-yourself
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Old 01-06-2011, 05:59 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Mokumegane View Post
Lol! I've sewn a lot of stuff. Are you knitting for yourself/friends/family or knitting general sizes for a large amount of different kinds of people? If you're knitting for friends/self/family, you can always make a cheap dress form by having them wear a t-shirt they don't want anymore, then putting duct tape around them where the shirt is so that it fits snug, then cutting up the back, removing it (and the now-ruined shirt) taping it shut, taping the arm and neck holes so the holes are covered (without crimping them) filling it with any kind of stuffing (stuffing, newspaper, whatever) and closing up the bottom the same way you closed the neck/arms. Likewise, you could do it the other way and close up the bottom first. You can use this to make paper pattern pieces and see what shape(s) you'll need to make. You can also take measurements. There should be some in-depth sewing guides or knitting ones online that will help you know where you should measure on a person. With their measurements, you can make a pattern. I'm figuring you're an advanced knitter and know how to increase/decrease and how that looks on the pattern, so you should be able to figure out stuff with the measurements. Also, you need to keep in mind if the item(s) will fit the person's curves or be more straight and just drape on them. Half of construction is design, really.

Btw, here is Burda's online pictorial of how to measure someone for a fit... http://www.burdastyle.com/techniques...asure-yourself
I actually use this technique to block sweaters for other people. I make the form and then put the sweater on the form and use a spray bottle to wet it.
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Old 01-06-2011, 08:33 PM   #7
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Yeah, it works very well for stuff... Also, dress forms are expensive to buy and duct tape and an old (or cheap, new) t-shirt are very cheap. In some ways, it works better than a dress form you buy because it really is molded to the person's shape.

but yeah... I've done a lot of creating sewing patterns... especially every Halloween lol... you should see some of my daughter's Halloween costumes. She's cute in them and loved every single one!
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