Been paging through my books on pattern drafting (it turns out I have three). Looks like lots of fun – the primary elements of fitting appear to be adding ease (extra fabric so you can move in the finished garment) and changing the location and appearance of darts.
Darts basically take what would be a flat sheet and turn it into a slightly conical section (if you cut a “v” out of a piece of paper and connect the cut edges, you’ll see what I mean). The (female) human form has a couple cones in it, the most obvious being the breasts, but there’s also a cone form at the waist (from the waist up and the waist down), and slight cones at the shoulderblades. So there have to be a couple of “V”s cut into the fabric to compensate. Where those “V”s are placed (and whether they’re simply translated into multiple pattern pieces, as in a princess cut) appears to be the first, most basic part of dressmaking.
Of course, then there’s designing collars, necklines, etc., but that comes later.
I tried pattern drafting before, but gave up relatively early on because it required miles and miles of paper to draft even a preliminary design, not to mention a lot of tedious (manual) redrawing. I have the feeling that Patternmaster: Celebrations will be a godsend for this, as it will allow me to draft patterns electronically rather than having to do it all by hand. It also has a lot of “prefab” patterns that I can then modify to my tastes, saving me a lot of time.
I’m excited at the prospect. Now, if I could just have some time to DO it!