In fashion designing, one comes to perform some activities that give the entire process of garment creation its meaning and purpose.
For example, to extend a particular pattern across a larger variety of garment designs, one needs to figure out how the very same and specific pattern can be adapted to different sizes and shapes of the same garment design.
The process of making this possible is called Pattern Grading. It is a very important subject included in the curriculum of fashion designing courses. It helps in creating a line of differently sized or contoured garments that are yet similarly patterned.
This helps in applying certain themes to a variety of garments, adhering to different fashion-size standards.
Here’s a basic low-down to get you started on your own line!
A lesson in Making Art Adaptable
Pattern grading is necessary for a designer to make garments for a fashion line which can be donned by people of different body types. At Hamstech, a student is introduced to grading in fashion design classes at a stage where he/she has a clear understanding of pattern-making and cutting.
With grading, a student learns how to size up or size down a good pattern. Grading also helps in adapting the size of a pattern to a person’s changing body size. Imagine how great it would be to use grading to maintain the same pattern of a child’s favourite dress as he/she grows!
Fashion designing institutes train in 2 methods of pattern grading, namely, the slash & spread method and the shift method.
In the slash & spread method, the area of the pattern, which needs to be resized, is cut horizontally and vertically, spread out to the new garment size before redrawing the new pattern. This is known as grading up. While grading down, the cut-out pieces are overlapped, and not spread.
In the shift method, the pattern piece outline is shifted outwards or inwards, or even given extensions. Then, the pattern art is recreated.
Softwares like CAD for computer grading makes the whole process easier. It perfectly handles pattern making, sizing and fabric shrinkage calculations. Hamstech Institute trains students in computerised pattern grading extensively.
Why Pattern Grading Counts
It is important to keep patterns fluid to ensure that garment design have the same theme, effortlessly blended across them. Without practice and skill in pattern grading, a fashion designer will face a stagnation. Adaptable patterns give greater scope for fashion houses to create a line that displays a variety in designs and similarity in concept.
Job Prospects in Pattern Grading
Pattern grading offers ample scope for employment. There is a progressive career growth from a junior level to expert pattern grader in the industry. One may start as a Pattern Grading Assistant or Sewing Machinist to go on to become a Head Pattern Grader.
Hamstech’s course in fashion designing gives the students an insight into the art and technique of pattern grading at the very formative stages of their career.