What Are Cut-On-Fold Patterns?
Cut on fold patterns feature a straight edge with no seam allowance which is aligned to a fabric fold in the cutting process. Cut on fold patterns are very commonly used in the dressmaking process as they not only provide comfort on the pattern cutting process, they also provide an efficient way to save space and provide more accuracy in the cutting process.
You can identify a cut on fold pattern by searching for a cut on fold edge. This edge should not only be completely void of seam allowance it should also be clearly marked with one of the following notations:
A cut on fold edge corresponds to the line that splits a symmetrical pattern perfectly in half. Cut on fold edges for the most part corresponds to either the garment's center front or center back lines. In order for a cut-on-fold pattern to work both sides of the center back or center back lines should be identical. For example, a sewing pattern for an off shoulder dress or blouse cannot be cut on fold since the shoulder and neckline are asymmetric and thus have a difference shape on both sides of the garment's center front (or center back) line.
Cut on fold patterns entail that the fabric be carefully folded on grain. When cutting cut on fold sewing patterns, the very first thing that should be pinned and aligned is the patterns cut on fold edge with the fabric's fold. These two edges should match perfectly and will provide a designated grainline in the cutting process- for that reason, it is important to fold the fabric parallel to the selvage edge such that the fold falls perfectly on grain.
The beauty of cut on fold patterns is that they save space and time in the cutting process allowing for a more precise and efficient cutting process. If you draft your own sewing patterns at home, you can use a cut on fold technique to save pattern paper especially if drafting larger garment pieces such as flared skirts or tops.