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September 01, 2017 2 min read

Whether you use a commercial sewing pattern and you made lots of alterations to it, or you have just finished drafting a pattern, you should check it over before you start cutting out the fabric. So let’s see what you need to do to make sure the pattern fits after you made alterations to the pattern or after you finished drafting from scratch.

Tools to use

Here is what you need:

  • All the pattern pieces
  • A ruler or a tape measure
  • A set square or something else with a right angle
  • A pencil

The nine steps to follow

Here are the steps you need to do:

  1. Iron the pattern pieces to get rid of any creases.
  2. Cut out the pieces outside, but try to keep quite close to the edge. If you cut out the pieces too roughly, it will be hard to check the pattern.
  3. Label and mark all the pieces correctly. You should be able to see what they are, for example back, sleeve, and so on. Other things you need to see on the labels or markings include the number of pieces to cut, the fold line, and the grain line.
  4. Check the marking of the darts. They should be marked using markings, notches, and holes.

Check the angles of the corners. They should be right at the top and bottom edges of the pattern pieces, such as hems and waistbands. All these corners should be 90 degrees, otherwise, the garment may get a scalloped effect when you sew the front and back pieces together.

  1. Make sure the side seam length is the same of front and back pieces. Also, check that the side seams are the same length that notches or diamonds line up. To do this, place the front and back on top of each other, and the right sides together.
  2. For skirts or trousers, make sure the waistband lines up.
  3. There are lines that are supposed to be straight, so check this. Remember that it is always possible to cut off any extra fabric.
  4. Write the hem allowance and the seam allowance on the pattern pieces.

How to fix any possible problems

When you check the pattern, it is possible that you find things that don’t match up. It depends on the mismatch to decide what to do. You need to find the problems and make the necessary alterations.

For example, if your side seam is a few millimeters longer on the front piece than on the back, you need to make them the same. However, only do this by making sure you keep the corners as right angles.

Make it quick

If you follow the required steps and you keep count on the advice, you can get a perfect garment. However, some of the most important things to keep in mind are:

  • Hold the pieces up to your body to check that they are the right size
  • Check the corners to be at the right angles
  • Put the pieces on top of each other to check that there is no difference in seam