Pattern Magic

This is not a description of what I do – only what I aim to create in knitting – but a series of 3 cult pattern-cutting books from Japan by Tomoko Nakamichi, published by Laurence King that I discovered at the V&A bookshop. The books show you how to create stunning, sculptural and Japanese inspired clothes step-by-step through clear diagrams – not unlike knitting schematics – and detailed photographs. Each of them is a gem, revealing the secrets of each garment like pieces in a puzzle.

Who is the genius behind them? The answer is Tomoko Nakamichi, a professor in Pattern Making at Bunka Fashion College – yes, that sounded familiar because it is the college where both designers Kenzo and Yamamoto among others studied. See The books bring together the results of the research on garment patterns she has carried out to help instruct her students.

“Making a pattern. Clothes are a way of expressing oneself, and with this in mind I’m often inspired by fashions of the past. To discover how they were made, I try drafting the patterns myself, and sometimes come up with designs that are entirely my own” she writes in Pattern Magic available at Amazon, here:

My own sewing skills are very limited and need to be improved immensely but that is not the only reason why these books appealed to me. Learning more about pattern making, I believe will make me a better knitwear designer. Take one look at Mathew Gnagy’s designs and you will understand me, see my post on knitting-off-the-axis. Merely studying each photograph is like admiring a beautiful sculpture, each garment a piece of art! A true inspiration and an outstanding source of pattern knowledge – indeed, they are magic!


3 thoughts on “Pattern Magic

  1. You may want to check out for sewing classes that are taught on the computer.

    I found the 3 that I took very helpful in upping my sewing game.

    Frequently there have been sales where you can get the classes for half price.

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