Wednesday, February 1, 2012

German Pattern Experiment: Day 5

Hi everyone and welcome back to my little corner of the blog sphere for another post on my German Pattern Experiment.  If you've been following along, you remember that last week I covered some tips on tracing these patterns.  Well this post is a follow up to that with a few more tips on things to look for when tracing your patterns.

In addition to special markings like dotted line (for edges placed on the fold of fabric) and other markings like button placements or darts, you will want to look for tiny little numbers in the corners of each of your pattern pieces.  Do you see the very blurry 58 in the middle of this picture?  Yes, I am sorry, it didn't look that blurry on my camera, but you can tell there is a number, and it is in the corner.


Okay, that really was hard to see, here is another example from a picture I used in my last post.  You can see the 35 in the corner of a pattern piece as well as the 65 that is below the asterisk.  As you are tracing your pattern pieces, you will want to look for all of these tiny numbers and add them to your tracing.  This will be especially helpful if you are like me and are too lazy to translate the sparse directions.

Again, fun cutout dress form has been provided by my one of my dearest friends.
Just why are these tiny numbers so important?  Because they show you how to line up your pattern pieces!  Isn't that a beautiful thing?  With just a bit of intuitiveness, you can easily decide which piece attaches to what other piece and where.  Below you can see where I am lining up two pieces where the number 60 matches up for both pieces.  (The flash gets in the way a bit, but I think you can still get the idea).



As I started piecing my muslin together I decided to try going in the order of the numbers.  For this pattern, I started with number 57, since that was the lowest number on my pieces and I just made my way through the largest number (66).  For the most part, it made sense to piece my pattern together in this order.  I just love how easy it was to piece this pattern together without needing refer to the directions even once (not that I could if i wanted to, since I can't read German).

Oh, and I should also mention that these pattern pieces do not include seam allowances.  So, when you go cut out your muslin or fashion fabric, you will want to add 5/8" or whatever your seam allowance preference is.

My last piece of advice comes with the sizing of these patterns.  I've learned that most of them come in sizes of 1, 3 and 5:


What's this, you can't read German?  Don't worry, neither can I.  Despite the fact that I did not make the effort to translate my pattern, I do have a translation of the sizes.

                        Bust                                       Waist                         Hips
Size 1     90 cm (35.4 inches)        72 cm (28.3 inches)         100 cm (39.4 inches)
Size 3   102 cm (40.1 inches)        80 cm (31.5 inches)         112 cm (44.1 inches)  
Size 5   114 cm (44.9 inches)        90 cm (35.4 inches)         124  cm (48.8 inches)

I believe the patterns in my magazine are size 3.  So I will keep that in consideration as I make up my patterns.

Do any of you have advice to share on working with German pattern magazines or a similar medium?  Your thoughts are important to me, and I would love to hear anything you have to share.  On my last post, Anna (who I would consider a vintage pattern expert of sorts) shared that it is a good idea to measure your pattern pieces before making your muslin, because quite often the pieces don't measure up to what you would expect.  This is great advice and something to really keep in mind when working with these kinds of patterns.  Any other thoughts or questions are always welcome.

Live in this moment and love life!
Annabelle

17 comments:

  1. Very interesting! I'm so excited you've made it to the muslin stage. I hope it continues to go well for you! Unfortunately, I don't have any advice for you but, I will have to keep Anna's in mind when I make my new vintage patterns.

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    1. Your well-wishes for continued progress is quite encouraging. Thanks.

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  2. Obviousely, i love this project of yours. If you ever have questions - also with translations- feel free to ask! I like to pin my paper patterns to the dress form, instead of just measuring it. It gives a good first overview. Are you sure all your patterns are in size 3? Usually the magazines will have different sizes, so there is something for every woman in it...
    Best, Katja

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    1. Katja - thanks for sharing that different patterns come in different sizes, this was something that I was unaware of - but that I find completely helpful! I will have to investigate my patterns further. And I may have to ask you for some translation help, so thank you for that ;)

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    3. Hello :)

      as i can see the pattern for your "Hemdbeinkleid" comes in Size II.
      It is mentioned in the decription "Grösse II auf dem Schnittmusterbogen" (means size II at the sheet).
      This magiazines often offer one size at the sheet and you could buy other sizes from the company (in this case Size IV as mentioned at the beginning of the description)
      Do not be disapointed, some of these dresses where only available from the company, you dont find the pattern at the sheet.

      :) Many Greetings from Germany! :)

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    4. Wow, thanks for the information - this is really helpful! It's great to have someone from Germany comment on this project. I appreciate your thoughts :)

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  3. BRILLIANT! So great to get a sneak peek into how this works!

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    1. I think it's a bit like your McCall's patterns with the numbered notches? In any case, I am having fun making my way through this project.

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  4. Annabelle, good for you! It took me ages to get my last German pattern experiment together and you're just trotting right along! Another thing I have encountered with these patterns is that sometimes, the pattern piece on the sheet can actually be drafted folded. To illustrate, I traced out a piece of a tap pantie pattern and the lines for the back seam looked like they had folded in on themselves, but it was actually because the piece hadn't fit on the original pattern piece so the designers folded the extra over and traced it inside the pattern piece. Does that make any sense? It took me forever to figure out :)

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    1. Oh my goodness Anna, this is truly helpful! I was looking at some of the dresses and and pants, wondering how on earth the pieces could be crammed into my pattern sheet. Those pieces must be drafted folded. Luckily the first pattern that I am working on did not have this issue - or I would be much crabbier ;) Thank you so much for the additional advice.

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    2. Sometimes a line of longer pieces stops and its given a number of centimeter you have to continue on your own :)

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    3. Again, your advice is so helpful. I will surely keep this in mind as I continue to work through some of these projects. Thank you.

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  5. I've only just hopped over from Debi's Sewing Place. How amazing that you dared to tackle vintage patterns in a foreign language! I've never made up patterns from magazines from that period, and I see you have some other German commenters, but if you need help with translation, I'd be happy to help out. :)

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    1. Wow, Alessa, thank you for your generosity in helping with translation. I would have never guessed there would be so many sewists willing to help out - it is amazing!

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  6. Hi there, I also just came over by from Debi's. Your cami-knickers look so cute! My compliments.
    I also wanted to add, that the description "Backfischgröße" made me smile: Backfisch is a really old term for teenagers or girls under 21. Literaly it means baked fish. I always thought this was a funny term and more or less at bit colloquial. But obviously it has been printed on a pattern magazine so tonight I learned something about my own language thanks to you and your project. Dankeschön. :) Christina

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    1. Christina, this project just gets more and more interesting. What a funny term for a young girl. Thanks for sharing, because this really did make me laugh :)

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