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Shapes Of Fabric


「紙樣師像是時裝的建築師。是設計師和縫紉師之間的隱藏人物。 因為紙樣師必須知道如何將裁片縫合成設計形態,一切知識都是相連的。」

我作為紙樣製作愛好者十分同意Shapes of Fabric的Minna的説法。

“Patternmakers are like architects of fashion, that hidden figure between the designer and sewist, because a patternmaker has to know how the pieces will be sewn together. It’s all connected.”

As a patternmaking lover, I share the same view with Minna from Shapes of Fabric.

習慣用軟石墨鉛筆,在圖紙上畫下擦下,有時是手甚至臉都被石墨弄髒了,這個時候就意味著設計的啟發正在她腦內發酵,想像著平面的線條將被縫製成立體的結構。Minna 就是常埋頭在米蘭南部家中的房間,一邊聽著外邊樹木叢中的鳥鳴,還有廣場中酒吧和咖啡店外人們談天說地的聲音。

Minna 從芬蘭來到時裝之都 ——米蘭,竟然找不到喜歡的衣服,不是布料(尤其是現時盛行的聚酯纖維) 、色調不合心意,就是比例細節總是有點不對勁,於是便決定去學做衣服。

當Minna正在一所時裝學校學習工業製版時,碰巧接到一張小傳單,宣傳日本紙樣設計師Shingo Sato將在另一所學校開班,好奇驅使下,想不到原本兩天的工作坊已足以説服她繼續之後幾年的TR Cutting School之旅,不斷從解決新設計的難題和學習新技術中打開眼界,深受佐藤老師摺紙設計的影響。

It’s her habit to draw with soft graphite pencils. The stains of graphite on her hands and face are a manifestation of the inspiration that roams through her mind.  Sitting in her house in the south of Milan, Minna listens to the birdsong and the people chatting outside the bars and coffee shops in the city square, and lets her imagination run wild. Lines turn into shapes and forms.

Originally from Finland, Minna moved to Milan, the fashion capital of Italy; yet, she couldn’t find any clothes she liked. Not the fabric (particularly the widely used polyester), the color, nor the cuttings and details were to her liking. Eventually, she decided to make her own clothes.

She was studying industrial pattern-making in a local fashion school when she received a flyer about a two-day patternmaking workshop run by Shingo Sato, a Japanese pattern designer. Out of curiosity, she signed up, and since then, she’s embarked on a journey of patternmaking. She enrolled into the TR Cutting School and spent years learning and refining her skills. Shingo Sato’s origami design has been a great influence along the way.



“Although  I really enjoyed classic patternmaking, TR was something else. More creative and you got to break the rules, too. You see, in classic patternmaking there are certain no-no’s you aren’t supposed to do. The more I learned, the more timid I became because I was always aware of the consequences of drafting a pattern in a certain way.

So, Shingo Sato in a way helped me to break free. I started to see patternmaking as something more limitless.  with Shingo Sato’s teachings I finally found true creativity. You know, I’ve always been fond of costume design and Avant Garde clothes with really particular shapes and textures. Not to wear them myself, but just to admire them as they are, like works of art.”

「我以前有一個想法,紙樣就像工程學或什麼的,如果你想成功,你必須要擅於數學;但這根本不是真的! 現在我反而會將紙樣製作和繪畫或藝術繫在一起。


Minna的紙樣創作實驗自2016年至今,在她的Instagram平台 Shapesoffabric 已上載了二百多件作品,而且除了在網上售賣她的紙樣教學,還會不時分享十分詳細的免費教材,和紙樣愛好者分享。

“I had always had an idea that patternmaking is like engineering or something. That you need to be good at maths if you want to succeed. But that wasn’t true at all! Now I much rather associate pattern making with drawing, or art in general.

it’s my signature art form. I see my designs more like objects or fabric sculptures than actual wearable garments. It’s all about repeating geometric shapes and textures. I like to exaggerate and spend a lot of time on making a texture that fills the whole surface.”

Minna started her patternmaking project in 2016, and until now, more than 200 of her pieces have been showcased on her Instagram, shapesoffabric. Her teaching materials can be purchased online, and sometimes she shares tips on pattern making for free.

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“I started with full scale designs, but later switched to half scale as it takes up less time and materials. This way I get to recycle fabric from larger garment toiles.”




“When you’re just starting out, a good rule of thumb is this: Don’t bite more than you can chew. Meaning, don’t start from the most difficult patterns because that could cause you to want to quit before you really get going.

I recommend starting from skirt patterns, and work your way up to bodice, and then pants and jackets. The basic pattern block comes first, then you learn how to turn it into a myriad of different garment patterns.When you learn things in the right order, your journey is filled with feelings of accomplishment and epiphanies that will keep you going and wanting to learn more.

It won’t be long until you’ll find yourself scanning people’s clothes when you’re out and about, working out how to draft the pattern in your mind!”

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