“Matching Fabric Patterns”

Last week I started cutting out a knit top. I promised I would give you some hints concerning matching fabric patterns, so here we go! The fabric for my knit top is a tie-dye look with a very large repeat. It is basically, a large stripe. This is good because stripes are much easier to work with since they only have to be matched in one direction. The rule is to match the front, back and sleeve fabric pattern using the armhole notches of the garment’s paper pattern pieces.

I also use the underarm seam (where the pieces will be sewn, not cut) to make the match even more accurate.

When these are all cut from the fabric, (the front, the sleeve and the back) the stripe matches all the way across the body.


I usually sew my garments using a flat construction method, so this is what the top looks like with the sleeves attached, but the side seams not yet sewn. 

Once the side seams are sewn, the fabric’s pattern will run across the front, will be picked up on the sleeve at the same level and will be carried on to the back. 

When cutting out your pattern pieces, lay one of the pieces you have already cut on top of the fabric, matching the pattern of the fabric you have cut to the fabric of the piece you are going to cut. If you have done it correctly, your pattern piece will disappear into the fabric. Can you find the pattern piece?