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Tips & Techniques > Collecting Ready-To-Wear Samples

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Posted by: ryansmumAria

About ryansmumAria starstarstar
Member since: 7/29/05
Reviews: 135 (tips: 96)
Skill level:Advanced
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Posted on: 5/29/10 10:54 AM
Review Rating: Helpful by 1 people   Very Helpful by 11 people   
In addition to making my own sewing sample collection (which is then attached to a metal ring), I have also collected sewing samples from RTW (ready-to-wear garments).

I either use clothing that I no longer want or I will seek out clothing at thrift shops and then I snip out the section that I want.

Example - I cut out various zipper flys from pants . I have collars of all types, pockets, cuffs, hems, etc.

I store all of these in a box for future reference. The nice thing is that it's always there and I don't have to go to my own closet to see how something is made. I also have a wide variety to chose from and I can study how professionals construct them.

You can learn so much.

Is there a collar that has a sharp corner but your always resemble "dog ears"? You can deconstruct the collar partially to see just how they managed to do it.

While in design school, I purchased several European designer jackets (original cost in the hundreds!) at a thrift shop and took them apart to learn how they were constructed and interfaced. It was quite an education and I still have those jackets decades later and use them in my classroom lessons.

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Jane Jane said... (6/7/10 11:55 AM) Reply
I running out to the thrift store today to start my sample collection! I want to figure out how RTW sews notched collars
lca said... (6/1/10 12:47 PM) Reply
This never even crossed my mind! What a good idea!
Margaret said... (5/30/10 12:33 PM) Reply
Excellent tip! I think I'd heard about collecting RTW samples, of jackets in particular, but was put off by the amount of space they'd take up. Cutting out just the important parts would really help solve that problem! Thanks!
domesticatedmennonite said... (5/30/10 3:15 AM) Reply
funny you should say that, I just cut the front of an old pair of torn up linen capris to keep the very well made fly front as a reference
SandiMacD said... (5/30/10 0:49 AM) Reply
What a wonderful tip! I am excited to start my own collection. This sounds like a great complement to my how-to sewing books.
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