Fashion A-Z

From applique to zippers, a comprehensive dictionary with definitions and
meanings of key fashion vocabulary, written by Camilla Morton.


Patchwork is a technique of sewing small pieces of shaped fabrics, of mixed patterns, colours and texture, all together to create larger geometric designs. Traditionally, this was a form of needlework used to create the patchwork quilt, but it is now a popular technique in clothing design and interiors.


Pattern can be one of two things. It is eitherthe decorative design that repeats over and over a fabric, or it is a flat template, made of paper or card, that is used as the key instruction guide for cutting the separate pieces of a garment. Pattern pieces are traced to allow for size, seam allowance and fit. They can help the dressmaker calculate the correct amount of fabric and its fit, before the trace and cut the template on the final fabric.