How do you add a new shape to an existing pattern?

  • Angel Angel Comment actions Permalink

    You can use an internal shape to cut the main pattern, and you can merge edges > however when you merge two patterns together that are not designed as exact pieces (like a fitting part in a jigsaw) the merge will not adapt the two pattern shapes around the entire shape, thus you could end up with an irregular single pattern.


    Merging is useful for the cut and slash workflow



    Merging is based on locking in the selected edge point flow > hence any pattern may jut out  which is the typical workflow used in 'cut and slash' pattern making from base blocks.


    So merge is really for use with slash and spread (see above) when you need to put parts back together that you may be editing under slash and spread, or joining two pattern areas across mating edge/points.


    changed shape pattern is now thicker for the cut hole , and therefore the edges of the last selected pattern will be merged and all other points stay the same > hence the neck point juts out on a slight angle. Note the position of your mouse cursor matters as the merge is performed based on the last edge (and pattern piece) you selected. The merge will then pull to that edge/pattern piece. 

    One of the very powerful case study workflows for using 'merge' is making complex pleat development patterns. This is where you slice and dice multiple copies of a pattern to recreate a single whole pattern. This is typically done in traditional paper pattern making and this is why these two toolsets (cut and slash) and merge are in MD. It is specific to an age old approach born from two hundred years of pattern development.

    If I want to develop a complex knife pleat on a sleeve with irregular angles or even pleat pitch I use the cut and merge approach to developed pattern making. > I make copies of the single pattern piece with the internal lines for the pleats noted on the pattern piece > and I flip/mirror the copies and color them for easy working.

    I then proceed to cut the patterns into pieces based on my drafting lines.


    These might be really complex however this approach will work with merging any number or type of pleat at any angle or pitch. (see below)

    I now merge these together according to order of the pleats (like a jig saw) and as I work the merged developed pattern reveals itself as a fully developed single pattern made up from many pieces. Note the points aid fold line insertion for creasing.

    And then you simply simulate it under creasing and you have the original base sleeve block pleated exactly as a fully developed single pattern. (Using cut and merge).


  • Tim Smith Comment actions Permalink

    Thanks for taking the time to break all this down for me. Much appreciated. :) There's a couple of things I'm unsure about though. In your second example with the neck area - where you've got a similar shape to what I have - did you cut that out using the Slash and Spread tool? I'm also confused as to why that edge needs to be at a slight angle for merging.

    Regarding the pleats: with the image showing A and B, there's a jagged line running down the middle. Is that from a tool to get that jagged look like in the right example? Which tool does that?


  • Angel Angel Comment actions Permalink

    The jagged line is simply a reference I make to the knife pleat (fold) direction I want to follow (a sketch on the pattern piece) that I leave in as I work, it indicates what color piece to join onto the next element, so when you arrange the pieces before you merge is acts like an idiot diagram so you don't make a mistake. And internal line can be changed to reference line (blue) by selection the lines and using the trace tool to turn them into that format. Then they just end up a reference line.


    In the neck area that is me illustrating how it doesn't work when you have dissimilar edited shapes that make up the pattern piece (hole). So when you merge the two edges it adjusts the two edges you select but does not edit the other two > resulting in that neck point jutting out, which you would need to manual re-edit into shape. So that not a good workflow.


    You would not use the slash and spread tool for that type of detail you show, only if you are developing from a base (block) pattern. >> see video

Please sign in to leave a comment.