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How to Make Sewing Patterns, 2nd Edition
by Don McCunn
Cover for 'How to Make Sewing Patterns, 2nd Edition'

How to Make Sewing Patterns solves the mysteries of pattern drafting with easy, step-by-step instructions and clear line drawings that show how to create custom-fit garments in a wide range of designs. The book's detailed instructions on measuring and fitting include do-it-yourself photographs as well as directions for creating custom dress forms.

Perfect Bound Paperback: US $24.95
    ISBN: 978-0-932538-21-5
Case Laminated Hardback: US $34.95
    ISBN: 978-0-932538-20-8
8-1/4" x 10-3/4", 182 pages


"This edition (the first was published in 1973) continues McCunn's thorough, comprehensive approach with some updates, including an extensive series of photographs of a model taking her own measurements (an elemental step toward creating custom-fitted garments) and incorporation of the quarter-scale "mini-me" approach to practicing and prototyping new designs.

"McCunn starts from the beginning, describing in detail how to measure the body to create a sloper-an individually customized master pattern from which a variety of garments can be designed.

"The second half of the book focuses on ways to alter the completed sloper to design well-fitted custom garments for men and women. McCunn also provides information about working in quarter-scale, including directions for constructing a customized quarter-scale dress form.

"Sewists interested in exploring patternmaking will find an abundance of information and benefit from the thorough coverage of measurement and fitting techniques."

Library Journal, 6/15/2016

Please feel free to share this review with your local library using the flyer below.

"Beyond the impressive range of material in How to Make Sewing Patterns is the author's obvious concern that readers understand what they are doing and why. There are many helpful tips throughout the book, some quite clever and unexpected.

"The section on drafting a sloper contains excellent explanations of the various body contours, measuring, and fitting. Text, drawings, and photos of the human body from every angle illustrate the various interrelated contours and just how a pattern accommodates them. He even gives detailed instructions on how to measure and fit yourself."

Threads Magazine

"Don McCunn has certainly mastered pattern drafting and fitting a wide range of bodies. Whether or not you have taken pattern drafting in a class, this book is a good reference in a very readable style. I especially liked the exacting instructions on taking measurements on the body and the solution for side seams which are not perpendicular to the floor."

Sandra Betzina, the power behind Power Sewing.
Author of 10 sewing books, a syndicated columnist,
and Host of HGTV's "Sew Perfect."

"Your explanations are very clear and the many illustrations you provide are really helpful in understanding the steps you describe. I'm also impressed by how comprehensive your book is, covering almost every type of garment and different types of fabric. I also like the fact that you discuss many different ways of altering patterns in such detail."

Philip Gust, Editor The Virtual Costumer

"I feel fortunate to have learned pattern making from this book first, because it provides a conceptual basis to flat pattern work. It explains how seams and darts, pleats and gathers can actually shape fabric to fit a three-dimensional body.

"I think the new sloper drafting process, together with the full discussion of fitting with gingham and grainline treatments, makes How To Make Sewing Patterns, Second Edition well worth considering as an upgrade from the first edition."

Michael Portuesi Line of Selvage

To ask for assistance and/or discuss custom patternmaking issues, join Don's free forum Bespoke Sewing Patterns

Copyright © 2004, 2005, 2006, & 2016 by Donald H. McCunn