Which Pattern System to use

Hello everyone, I am new to Seamly2d and would appreciate your help with next steps. I have completed input of my measurements into Seamlyme. Do I now need to choose a specific Pattern Making System for instructions to use with Seamly2D? What Pattern Making system is best? thank you for your help.


Hello and welcome to the Seamly2D forum, @LizQ

When I found Seamly in 2017, I suddenly discovered that I also need to learn HOW to create a pattern. I settled on Winifred Aldrich’s books because she gives something of almost everything you would like to make in very easy, step-by-step instructions that are easily translated into Seamly2D.

Later that year, I put together a PDF tutorial for an easy fitting blouse pattern that you can find in this chat: New member, any spanish speakers? - #9 by Grace

I have since worked my way through various books and have figured out a lot of other things to do with pattern making, but I often go back to Aldrich’s books, so I think, for personal use, this is a very good place to start. :slight_smile:


The Pattern Making System is an unfinished feature of the applications. My understanding is the idea was that you would select a system and it would be used as a template for a measurement file that would contain all the measurements for that system. So for now it makes no difference which system is chosen in the Prefs as it doesn’t do anything.

That being said, if you’re drafting a pattern based on a certain system - such as Mueller - then you will at minimum want to create a measurement file based on the measurements for that system.

For myself, I use a measurement file that contains measurements that will cover many of the different systems, as well as some variables that make it easier coding the formulas.


Short answer, no. You don’t need to choose a pattern making system. As @Douglas said, it doesn’t currently have any effect on the use of the programs.

OTOH IMHO it’s a good idea to use one. Otherwise you’ll end up with a garment that fits worse than off-the-shelf, like I did, (my single-digit daughters use it as a summer night-shirt now.) Not that I’m not still using what I remember of a dozen+ years old sewing class & YouTube in my attempts to draft, but I inherited a drive to do things the hard way from my parents. TBH, I think it made a decent, maybe even respectable, first-draft shell, but it was supposed to be wearable.


:joy: :joy: :joy:

I know the feeling. I have just (very neatly) folded up a pair of jeans that I made for myself… Looks gorgeous. Needs a button, buttonhole & hems. But where my head was… Goodness knows because it will fit 2 of me. Perhaps I should make some braces…

1 Like

And a modern one at that. My area of expertise is in period mens wear… for which there is a large volume of pattern source material for. Thing is if you use a turn of the century pattern system, chances are the garment will be tight fitting - due to the styles and body shape / size back then. People generally tend to be larger these days, as well as preferring to wear looser fitting clothing. So adjustments have to be made. Case in point… 18th century Hamilton and friends were not expected to be singing and dancing on a Broadway stage. Lol.


My first attempts to pattern making had been based on René Bergh’s Make Your Own Patterns - until I found out that these are patterns for women’s wear. Not very useful for a pyjama for my brother. Anyway, I have also discovered Winifred Aldrich. The pyjama construction (my primary objective) is easily transferred into Seamly3D, and it is definitely scalable. I succeeded with three really different measurement tables. All three pyjamas fit perfect!

Another recommendation might be the series of Theresa Gilewska, not just as straightforward as Aldrich, but very detailed with lots of tips and tricks.


Hi, Im totally new here and cant get past the first hurdle of how to upload a pattern I want to order. Im making transgender female undies and need to adjust to fit the new shape. Can someone help, please on how to set my first pattern up?

1 Like

Hello, @Butterflies

You use Seamly2D to create your patterns. For this you need instructions, or to already know how to create your patterns. If someone created your pattern on Seamly2D for you, then you only need to get the pattern file (.val) and the measurement file (.vit) from them and load the pattern.

Hello @Butterflies,

maybe I am too late. So you want to upload a pattern? As Grace wrote, uploading in a strict sense does work for “seamly-files”. In which form/format is the pattern you want to order? A classical pattern does not know about body measurements. Normally there is no functional relation between pattern points and measurements - but: this relation is the advantage of the parametric concept of seamly. What you need is a design recipe, a construction (e.g. Aldrich). Then, and only then there is a way to modify the recipe.

I remain curious.

@Grace: I object to creating patterns with seamly. As I wrote above seamly needs a relation between it’s own geometric concepts and the measurements. Creating a pattern means for me to start at zero, with a lot of imagination. Who but a really skilled cutter could transform his/her ideas in a twodimensional construction? That’s why we need basic rules for basic types of garments we may modify then, e.g. in seamly.

I hope this doesn’t sound too nasty.

Greetz, hp

1 Like

In the spirit of banter which seems to be appropriate here: what term would you feel is more appropriate? Would you deprive us of a term which, if imperfect, is a pretty good match without offering us a better term in its place? No wonder you felt it might come across negatively, for you failed to positively provide an alternative! :crazy_face: I hesitate to offer an alternative myself, for fear that I will distract someone’s mind from a better option, but in the hope that such scruples are overly fine I will offer this possible alternative: propagating.

That said I really am curious what you mean by,

If the files did not exist until I told Seamly to save the information I provided for them, is that not creation?

I made a shirt once. It was wearable. The biggest problem was that I didn’t actually like wearing my design, (& yeah, the fit was poor, but not bad for a rough draft.) I am a novice, (at best,) cutter & did not follow a set of instructions, just some principles that I picked up here & there.


1 Like

Touché! Hit!

Mode smart-ass: I prefer drafting or modelling. End smart-ass.

Now I have to come out. I am neither cutter nor tailor. I have been a mathematician, but I always worked in our university as an engineer, at least sort of, that’s to say I made technical calculations and taught programming. The “D” in CAD has changed it’s interpretation. In the beginning we spoke of computer aided drafting, later that changed to computer aided design. In this spirit seamly is a parametric drafting tool … CAPM? Computer aided pattern making?

You got me again. Yes, the files are created. So you are right, and Grace is right, too. But we talk about patterns, not about files. In this respect I go back to my mathematical roots. The files are a possible representation of a pattern. IMHO, a pattern is concept.

Going back further into my early childhood I remember assisting my grandmother. The printed patterns with their criss-cross of lines of various types, straight, dotted, had been fascinating, and I loved to copy the lines with a tracing wheel on old newspapers. Maybe not the traditional occupation for a little boy. Of course I had not the slightest idea how these lines had been generated.

Malicious grin. A shirt may be simple, at long as you make it sleeveless! But I remember (lots of remembrance!) that the crown of the sleeve often provides a problem. With some trial and error we can succeed. A fitting trouser’s pattern seems to be more demanding.

Back to seamly. The highlight is the parametrics. To make use of it, we need a construction algorithm. Without the algorithm I cut out paper and fit it loosely to my victim. If it is complex, I cut it in nettle cloth, then it will be draped and fixed with pins … cut and sewn in the final fabric.

[I do not like the word algorithm. It had too much been misused by g**gle. The secret is not the scoring algorithm, which is a simple weighted mean, but the choice of weights …]

I can imagine a garment, say, a nightwear. Then I take the parametric idea of Aldrich’s pyjama, and I try to modify some contours. But this is always in the context of the existing parametric basic, which I never could have made by myself.

And so seamly helps me creating modifications and adaptations. The creation of a basic concept - this is called a sloper? - together with all the relations of measurements cannot be done exclusively by seamly. It’s done in the brain.

End of my sermon.


An enjoyable & educational read. Thank you. I believe that when I thought of “propagating” it was, indeed, “drafting” which I was attempting to cogitate.


1 Like

I have no clue what any of what you posted has to do with the app and the OP’s original question.

1 Like

Maybe this has become something of a double thread. My first posting had been based on some curiosity with respect to @Butterflies question. What is meant by pattern I want order? Which relation can be established between this pattern, of which we don’t know anything, and seamly? This has of course a lot to do with the app. But I have to admit that there is no relation to the OP, only to @Butterflies.

Then I made the obvious mistake of a mild criticism of @Grace’s wording create. From this a discussion with @Pneumarian arose. Honestly, it has been by no means my intent to capture this thread.

I am deeply sorry, and I promise to keep silent about things which do not fit.

1 Like

:slight_smile: No need, we enjoy a lively discussion as long as it is helpful and not abusive.

And in reply to this, from my side… I actually create patterns in Seamly. If I didn’t, it wouldn’t feed the creative part of my personality and I wouldn’t have been on here for the past 5 or 6 years and I would’ve moved on to something that does.

I have worked my way through various pattern making systems and have created my own basic pattern from which I add, move and rotate things to produce a garment which I have plotted out in a line drawing (from a hand drawn idea). So yes, I consider that pattern created and also the final garment as created.

My basic pattern, the creativity belongs to centuries old methods that have very gradually developed over time and which, I think, no one person can claim ownership.

The inner workings of programming are very much a grey area to me, but working with programs is quite another story. I’ve been working on computers since they came out with a 32mb hard drive and used an 8.25 inch disk for the program and another for the data and Windows only came later., so you had to type in Run followed by the name of the .exe file. And all screens where monochrome and the mouse was unheard of. :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

So all that said… When I say that I had to learn how to Create a pattern it is in the sense that I had to learn How to bring a pattern into existence… whether on paper or on Seamly (which is the classic definition of create).

So I stand by my wording. :slight_smile:

There are programs that one can buy that give you a basic set and then you just drag the nodes around, etc. to achieve your desired pattern, I’ve had a look at them. But I, personally, prefer doing things on Seamly. It has opened up a whole new world to me and I can create a pattern for anything I want and adjust the sizes or variables any way that I want to.

If you do want a basic set, you can find a number of basic patterns for various pattern making methods on the My Pattern Cloud and we are also looking into a basic set to ship with Seamly2D. There is also a basic Aldrich bodice on the discussion mentioned above.

1 Like

Hi Grace, thanks a lot for your understanding answer. I like this kind of discussion because it gives me some insight into the way others think (and everybody has his/her very special way of thinking), and I would like to take it even further. But this would require a new thread … I am not sure whether I should initiate it. Have a nice sunday!

1 Like

Lol… yeah, I starting learning 45+ years ago starting with Fortran using punch cards, Basic with punch tape… and the next year graduated to APL on the IBM terminal with the 300 baud acoustic coupler modem … with a WHOPPING 22k of workspace.

My favorite though has always been 68000 assembly back in the 80’s - specifically on the Amiga platform. Yeah… I was one of those nerds who would try to squeeze one less cpu cycle out of a routine. Last thing I was working on in ASM as a joke - before switching to a PC - was a take off on the Nintendo game Mega Man… it was going to be called Glue Man - who carried a hot glue gun and would shoot the enemies with globs of hot glue. Maybe one of these days I’ll dig out one of my Amigas and see if I can get one working, brush up on 68000, and finish the game. :slight_smile:


:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: Yes, how everything has changed. I had the Apple Mark II at home.


1st computer we had at our shop was an Amstrad than ran CPM… and Mallard Basic that I wrote a Rental Database application in. Eventually converted that with a compiled Basic on Amigas… which I hacked, um integrated with the bookkeeping software we ran at the time. :slight_smile:

1 Like