Hi! This is Amanda from MeadowSews and today I’m here to talk about mashing patterns. We’ll show you how to take elements from different patterns that you love and combine them together, or mash them, to create a new, unique, and fun custom garment!
New Horizons patterns come with many different options or views already. But, the awesome thing about making your own clothes means you can not only pick and choose from those options, you can even incorporate ones you love from completely different patterns!
For pattern mashing, you will want to have your pattern pieces from the two (or more!) patterns you are planning to mash printed out, assembled, and graded to size. We are going to lay one on top of the other and make a new pattern piece with the elements we want from each one! For this example, I am going to show you how to mash the top of the New Orleans tee, including the set in sleeve and crew neck, with the looser fit of the body of the Riviera Raglan!
Lining up your patterns
When you are laying your pattern pieces on top of each other, it is important to align them correctly so that the elements you want from each pattern will still fall in the right place on the new pattern piece and on the wearer. As a general rule, you will line up pattern pieces in places which will always stay in the same place when the garment is being worn. For tops I like to use the underarm point, and for pants or shorts I use the crotch curve. For skirts, you’ll want to see exactly where the skirt begins to flare out at the body, whether this is the natural waist, high hip, or somewhere in between, and use that!
New Horizons drafts for a side waist of 8”, so this is a good point to start from with the pattern pieces, although for the best fit you’ll want to measure the wearer’s side waist and lengthen or shorten as needed!
Take care to ensure that the grain lines in the original patterns remain parallel while you’re making your new pattern! Many New Horizons pattern pieces are cut on the fold, but sleeves and asymmetrical pattern pieces are not, and it’s important to ensure that these don’t twist as you’re working.
There is a quick and easy way of cutting a new pattern, and a more thorough and methodical way that will allow you to more easily repeat a mash. I generally do the quick and easy way, but I will show you both ways so that you can see the advantages of each!
Quick and Easy Mash
For a quick and easy mash, lay both of your original pattern pieces out on your fabric and align them using the points above. I am aligning both of these front pattern pieces at the underarm point.
As you can see, the Riviera’s underarm point goes out further than the New Orleans tee, but since we are keeping the armscye of the New Orleans, we want to make sure not to change it! For this quick mash, I just fold up the bit of the Riviera that sticks out further than the New Orleans, and make sure that the fold forms a smooth transition.
Then cut the fabric according to the pattern piece corresponding to the element you want from each pattern! For this example, I would cut the top of the New Orleans tee to the armscye, transition to the Riviera, and then cut the bottom of the Riviera.
Make sure you cut the front and back with the transition line in the same place if you are mashing the body of a pattern. Then sew according to the directions for each pattern, and you have a new garment!
Creating a new pattern piece to use again!
For a more methodical and repeatable mash, you can create your own new pattern pieces! You’ll need a large sheet of paper to work on. You can use freezer paper, Swedish tracing paper, wrapping paper, or even regular printer paper taped together. I am using wrapping paper here as it was handy!
Trace your first original pattern piece onto your paper.
Align your second pattern piece over the first one, matching a common point. Here I used the armscye. Make sure the grain line is also aligned, I used the fold for the patterns here, but you can also transfer the grain line markings to your traced pattern to be sure.
Now use a third color to create your new pattern piece by tracing the elements you want from each pattern!
At the point where the patterns meet, use a very gentle and smooth curve to evenly transition from one pattern to the other. You’ll want a smooth line so that when you are sewing the seams, there will be a smooth curve and no edges or bumps that will stick out.
Make a new pattern piece for the front and back of your mashed garment, if you’re mashing the body! If you’re not changing the sleeve piece, use the one that corresponds to the armhole of your new bodice piece. If you are mashing pants or shorts, use the waistband of the topmost original pattern.
And now cut your fabric using your new pattern piece and sew according to the directions for each pattern!
More Mashup ideas!
There are a nearly infinite number of new patterns you can make by mashing patterns you love together! Here are some ideas to get you started!
Have you ever done pattern mashing before? Do you have any other ideas for patterns that would be great together? Please let us know below!