Garment Designer pattern making software is an amazing design tool. I know I’m biased, but
there hasn’t been a time that I’ve printed a pattern, when I haven’t smiled and inwardly danced
What I particularly like, is finding new uses for the software; beyond the typical dress or
sweater. So, when the man in my life suggested I give a try to hand-building ceramics, it didn’t
take too long for me to realize that Garment Designer would once again be my friend.
I’ve always known that there is a lot of similarity between pattern making and woodworking.
Both require a certain precision in planning, cutting, and putting the parts together. I was quick to see that in planning a ceramic piece, once again, these skills were transferable and I could use Garment Designer to build the pattern.
Building the Pattern Pieces
My plan for my ceramic piece was to create a vessel for kitchen utensils. Given my nature, and
avocation, I decided to model it after a clothing item, specifically, a kimono; I was thinking
asymmetry and a bit of texture.
So, first came the sketch, and then, some dimensions.
Then, on to the computer to create the paper pattern. I used the Generic Shapes and chose a
rectangle shape as my starting point, and then dragged a few points around to create the
pattern. I planned to use the printed pattern to test proportions, size, and the overall effect.
Once I confirmed that my pattern would give me the shape I wanted, I used it to cut out the clay.
Shaping the Clay
Next, came the process of shaping the clay around just the right 3-d object.
Textiles and clothing generally have some texture, so I wanted to add this to the clay.
That was fun… let’s do a second piece!
I had so much fun with this first piece, a second one followed… slightly smaller, but based again
on a garment. This new piece had a textured collar and a belt.
Finishing the Pieces
Of course, the last few steps involve firing and glazing. I left these steps in the hands of Don, the
ceramicist. One can only learn so much at a time, right?
Here are the finished pieces
I hope you enjoy my adventures. I encourage those who own the software to start finding non-
traditional uses for it. Send us a photo when you do something. We love seeing what your users