"Pattern cutting is a skill through which we are packaging human anatomy, just like designing a package for an object. Many products we purchase nowadays rely on intelligent packaging design for marketing: the iPod, chocolate, shoes, books, perfume and many more. In the same way, designing clothes that fit the human shape well affects marketability, both of the clothes and also of the package within - the wearer.
Imagine you are wrapping a present. Some of the easiest presents to wrap are flat rectangular shapes or cubes, such as CDs, books and diaries. It has always been much more challenging to wrap a gift that is an irregular shape, like a mug or a coffee maker. Under those circumstances, we will automatically go to look for a box...
Body packaging has to cope with a basic principle: human anatomy is an irregular three-dimensional shape. We do not have the option of searching for a box. Pattern cutting is about finding ways to cut fabric so that it wraps neatly around the three-dimensional body in the desired shape."
- Dennic Chunman Lo, Pattern Cutting, p.16
When I read this section in Pattern Cutting, a little lightbulb went off in my head. Ding! It may be obvious, but describing pattern cutting like wrapping an awkwardly-shaped gift sounded like a perfect summary of a process I find quite difficult to explain to people who have no idea of what it involves. I tested this explanation out on my boyfriend the last time he asked, "Er... what is pattern cutting again?" and he understood the concept immediately.
If you're keen to get your hands on this book following my review last week, I bring good tidings! The good people at Laurence King publishers are offering up a copy to one of my blog readers. To be in with a chance of winning, leave a comment below. How about sharing your favourite sewing tip or trick as part of your entry?
The giveaway is now closed
[Soundtrack: 'Video Games' by Lana Del Rey]