Pattern cutting books are just about one of my favourite things in the world. I have spent many hours lost in the sheer beauty of Tomoko Nakamichi’s “Pattern Magic” and continue to be inspired by Helen Joseph-Armstrong’s designs.
Here are my top 5 (and essential) pattern cutting books, from learning the basics to exploring the creative.
1. Metric Pattern Cutting for Women’s Wear
by Winifred Aldrich
This a great pattern cutting book to help you on your way to learn the basics.
Winifred Aldrich’s books are widely respected in the industry and most pattern cutters that I know have a copy of this tucked away in their desks!
You are taken through the basics, from how to draft different blocks to creating a range of styles and amendments based on those blocks.
I highly recommend this as a staple to everyone’s bookshelf. I regularly refer back to this book to refresh my memory and the block drafting methods that I teach are based on Winifred Aldrichs.
For a more detailed review of this book check out my other blog here.
2. Pattern Cutting for Fashion Design
by Helen Joseph-Armstrong
I came across this book entirely by accident but now that I have it I realise how lost I would have been without it!
As well as going through the basics we are also shown step by step how to create a wide range of styles and designs. There is also a great section on tailoring and stretch fabrics. it even briefly touches on lingerie!
This pattern cutting book is perfect for someone who has got to grips with the basics of pattern cutting and is keen to start experimenting and playing with different styles. I often find inspiration in the many styles illustrated within!
3. Pattern Magic
By Tomoko Nakamichi
I should start by saying that there is also Pattern Magic 2 and Pattern Magic 3 which are every bit as exciting as Pattern Magic 1!
These creative pattern cutting books are a bit of collectors item, not only are they brilliant pattern cutting books but they are also just absolutely beautiful from start to finish!
Tomoko Nakamichi has succeeded in taking styles which look impressively complicated and breaking them down into very easy to follow steps.
Expect step by step illustrations and photographs, as well as gorgeous designs which challenge your skills and creativity.
4. Draping The Complete Course
by Karolyn Kiisel
Draping directly onto the stand is a totally different way of working from flat pattern cutting. Usually people either love it or hate it, but if you’re one the lovers then this is a fantastic book to get you started!
The book starts by going through the basics (including a brief touch on history) and continues by going through step by step “projects” with really clear photographs and tips throughout.
If you’re thinking about draping then this book is a must! I can also highly recommend for anyone who is wanting to get a full understanding of fabric types and how they react and relate to the body and 3D manipulation.
5. Pattern Cutting (Portfolio Skills)
by Dennis Chunman Lo
Dennic was the director of the creative pattern cutting course at the prestigious London College of Fashion and boy, does it show in this book!
He begins by taking us through the basics, how to draft different blocks and details then continues to give you an insight into the industry.
Basic principals are explained in a really clear and concise way alongside some great tips for new pattern cutters.
I would really recommend this book to anyone who is a beginner and needs some guiding through the first steps of learning pattern cutting.
There you have it…my favourite pattern cutting books! Happy reading!
If you have any favourites please feel free to share them, I love discovering new pattern cutting books and methods of working!
You can find all of these books and lots of other inspiring pattern cutting books at my amazon store, just click here!