Monday, 4 July 2016

How to add sizes to a graded pattern

If you need to add more sizes to a pattern, follow these easy steps to make them magically appear! This technique is perfect if you bought the wrong size or even to enlarge or narrow down certain areas of a pattern. You can also use this technique to adapt a pattern for children or plus sizes. However, it is recommended to test the pattern on a muslin afterwards!

Step 1: Identify the seam lines on your pattern. To add sizes, it is more accurate to use the seam lines as guides.

Step 2: Start by grading the corners. To do so, draw a straight line that will pass through the same corner on two following sizes, and extend it toward the outside to create larger sizes, or toward the inside for smaller sizes.

If the pattern pieces are closely arranged and you wish to increase the sizes, some of them might overlap. For that matter, you will need to transfer the new sizes on pattern making paper (or silk paper).
To avoid confusion between the sizes and pieces, use a bright coloured pen. If you wish to add many sizes, try to use a different colour for each of them.

Step 3: Along this line, measure the distance between the two corners and report this length along the line extension. This length is used for one size only, so, if you wish to stack more sizes, repeat this step as needed.

Markings or dots are usually graded too. Ensure to include them to your new sizes using the same technique! 

Step 4: Grade the notches positions. Pattern notches are represented in various ways and might not reach the seam lines. Before you grade them, ensure to extend them all the way to the seam line.

Step 5: Grade the notches position using the same technique as shown previously. Do not draw the notches yet but ensure that their position is well indicated.

Step 6: Draw each size outlines by connecting the corners and notches positions. Be attentive to the grading already present and draw consistent curves and lines.

Step 7: Finish the pattern and add the seam allowances, using a seam gauge or a quilter's ruler . Draw the notches and any other graded markings.

Now you can transfer the pattern pieces (don't forget the grain lines!) and use them. I hope you liked this article and if you have any questions, leave them in the comment section.

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