Basic Pattern Blocking

As promised, a little tutorial on how to do some basic pattern blocking! This technique of course can be used with different fabrics (careful to use ones with similar properties and care!), but I love the look of blocking the same fabric with one of the blocked portions hand printed (more details of this discharged cabbage rose print top here). Pattern blocking is so simple, and has such a bold and graphic result!

mad mim_discharge printing_blocked rose top_13



  1. Trace your pattern front twice to create a full front pattern piece.
  2. Measure down 6.5″ from left shoulder and mark, and then 10″ from right side seam and mark. Draw a diagonal line from mark to mark, and then cut pattern on this line.
  3. Add seam allowances now (I added a 1/2″) by either taping paper to extend the top and bottom pieces along diagonal, or simply remember to add seam allowances when cutting your fabric. Be very careful to cut both pieces exactly on grain.
  4. Hand print top piece.
  5. Right sides together, baste top and bottom piece together, check placement, then sew and finish raw edges however you choose. Press well (seam allowances down).
  6. Trim any side seam excess, and then topstitch close to seam on bottom block.

Continue construction normally from there (except if you want to add a placket in back like I did!) More details here.



  1. Posted February 2, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

    Just thought you should know that today I made my very first dress. It’s for my daughter and it’s TERRIBLE but I did it because you are inspiring and now I am super proud of myself. I used your basic fitted tee measuring instructions and just added a circle skirt. I will get better with practice (and if I use higher quality fabric, probs). ALSO I made a narwhal stamp. WOO!

  2. Posted February 3, 2013 at 5:27 am | Permalink

    love the top! :)

  3. Posted February 3, 2013 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

    Awesome, thanks for the tutorial, I will definitely give this a try. It sounds do-able even for a relative beginner like me.

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