The Sewing Place

Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler

Irishseahorse

Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« on: July 03, 2020, 12:39:53 PM »
I'm still a novice, but I want to break away from shop bought patterns and either amend those patterns or start from scratch (initially copying shop bought items of clothes I love).

It looks like I'll need some sort of ruler with curves but I'm not sure where to start, a french curve or something like the Prym dressmakers ruler.

I can't work out the main difference/advantages of each. I would really appreciate some pointers.

Thanks!
If at first you don't succeed, something something..... basically don't give up

UttaRetch

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2020, 12:47:04 PM »
A French curve or pattern master is actually very useful even for those of use who use patterns.  I trace mine and these tools are great for armholes or anything that is curved.  I bought both of mine from Morplan because I live in London and was able to go to the shop.
What goes around comes around.

Efemera

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2020, 12:49:08 PM »
Neither are necessary , they’re both basically the same thing....just a normal ruler would do. I find a flexible curve is more use when drafting patterns.

Bodgeitandscarper

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2020, 14:17:49 PM »
I've got a curvy thing (no idea of it's proper name!) but find it's rarely the curve I need - what is the flexible curve that you use @Efemera ?

SkoutSews

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2020, 14:32:52 PM »
I bought a French curve a few years ago, having never used one previously. It's useful for lots of things: tracing patterns, drawing and altering armscyes and, in particular, adjusting necklines. If you have a garment with a neckline you like, you can use the French curve to replicate it by positioning the curve to coincide with the neckline and noting the numbers.

I've used it more than I anticipated.

maliw

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2020, 14:46:46 PM »
I've got something like this
https://www.amazon.co.uk/French-Drafting-Drawing-Stencil-Templates/dp/B00P7V95LW/ref=sr_1_24?dchild=1&keywords=french+curve+set&qid=1593783695&sr=8-24
and this
https://www.fredaldous.co.uk/products/pattern-maker-metric
I rarely use the curves but until now I must admit that I'd forgotten about them - thanks for the reminder and I didn't buy them from Amazon, can't remember where. I'm using the FA one at the moment to alter a pattern.
At leisure on the leisure penninsula

Greybird

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2020, 15:13:17 PM »
I have always wanted a French curve but never got round to getting one. When I want to draw a curve, I use a saucer/cup/bowl/glass/plate to draw round and link up straight lines on the pattern. Which of them I use depends on the "tightness" or otherwise of the curve I want.

So Chic

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2020, 15:25:57 PM »
I have a Patternmaker which I bought from Morplan and I find it very useful not just for curves as I can mark bias on it as well.
So Chic
Bernina Artista 630, Bernina 800DL, Janome Cover Pro 1000CP with  elderly Singer Touch & Sew 720G and Pfaff Overlocker 788 hiding in loft

sewingj

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2020, 15:36:39 PM »
@b15erk pointed me to this helpful video about how to use a French curve

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUG3P31BqNw
Attempting to be a Tailor of Gloucester

Missie

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2020, 15:50:18 PM »
I have the Morplan patternmaster (which I bought online millions of years ago) and I love it.  It has straight edges, angles, the curves of a french curve, and more), it also has 0.5 cm increments up to 6cm I think it is using the straight edge, which is excellent for adding seam allowances quickly and easily.  Other than my metre rule, it is my most used measuring implement and is in fact used more than my rule.  Definitely worth the money.
A measly 2.5m of stash used so far!

Goth Gardiner

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #10 on: July 03, 2020, 15:54:15 PM »
I have the morplan pattern master, a cheap set if French curves and the dressmakers ruler.  I can't remember the last time I used the ruler. However the pattern master i use quite a bit, and the French curves every time I draft something.
Stash busting: 2.25m in; 2.25m sewn  |
UFOs finished: 1 | Items repaired:
1


Ohsewsimple

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2020, 16:29:04 PM »
I treated myself to the new Shoben Pattern Shaper after my Fashion Curve cracked.  I had it for years but this new one is great.  I love the seam allowances marked, the curves, the fact that can you measure from a mid point to either end. 
I also have a SewEasy french curve and curve ruler.  Unfortunately they’re both imperial and I draft in metric.  But they have their uses.  I also have a flexible curve but don’t use it a lot for pattern alterations.  I find it useful for measuring curves as mine has centimetres marked along it.  Beats using a tape measure. 

Bodgeitandscarper

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #13 on: July 03, 2020, 16:40:49 PM »
Thanks @Efemera , I thought that was what you meant, now I wonder if I still have the one I had years ago... probably not...

Mr Twingo

Re: Do I need a french curve or a Dressmakers ruler
« Reply #14 on: July 03, 2020, 16:53:52 PM »
I wouldn't say a French curve is a must-have tool, but it can certainly be very useful. It depends on the type of sewing you do.

Mine rarely sees the light of day, as I only use it if I'm making hemline alterations where the flow of the garment wouldn't look right if I simply chopped 2 inches off all round. The last time I used it must be over a year ago when a colleague requested an alteration to a maternity dress.


Keep that, it might come in useful.