Development of a composite collar drafting system (for all principal collar types and their variations) : a thesis submitted in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Design, Massey University
Although collars represent only a small area of the pattern-making experience, they form a natural focal point when combined with the main parts of the garment. They are therefore an important design element that needs a considerable amount of thought. Presently, collar pattern-making follows a number of developmental paths that diverge considerably in their outcomes. Each collar style has a different collar drafting method to obtain the required collar silhouette and within each method there are many variations. Generally, drafts cannot be transported between styles, even changing the stand and fall measurements may not be possible without resorting to trials and drafting instruction alterations. Because of this individualistic approach there is a lack of standardisation and predictability to collar drafting in general and not all collar drafting methods are equal, some are better than others. Determining the more useful and advanced drafting techniques from, sometimes, conflicting methods is a matter of trial and error which, in itself, acknowledges and enlarges these unpredictable methods. Through an empirical knowledge of current collar drafting methods, coupled with an overview of the body of collar drafting methods derived from the literature, this thesis evaluated a number of selected collar drafting methods to identify their common elements, their underlying strengths and weaknesses and reasons for the scarcity of predictability of final collar forms. From the results of three-dimensional fabrications, a series of questions concerning their performances are developed to evaluate the drafting outcomes. A conceptual analysis, in which the mannequin was divided vertically in to a number of discrete 'sections' showed the importance of the relationships between all of the collar styles, their front opening positions and individual body neck-lines, giving a better understanding of how collars actually work. Conceptually dividing the mannequin in to a finite number of sections formed the foundations of the 'composite' collar drafting system. A composite collar drafting system, with a single set of instructions was developed that could enable designers and pattern-makers to create collar styles and their numerous variations, with the assurance that the envisaged two-dimensional collar will also be the final three-dimensional silhouette. The composite collar drafting system instils confidence in the entire process leading to a reduction in the number of toiles required to confirm a design. Novices should find the single composite collar drafting system easy to remember and apply, thus reducing the required learning period needed to master collar drafting. From the very beginning the whole design and pattern making procedure is obvious in methods, layouts and conclusions, making collar drafting a predictable cost-effective endeavour The composite collar drafting system, which may be capable of computerisation (something that is not, at present, available to the practitioner), positions itself outside of the current main-stream two-dimensional manual and computer methods and the small number of computerised three-dimensional versions of manual collar drafting, which only describe single collar types. There is no system that accounts and includes multiple collar styles and alternative designs, except the composite collar drafting system.