A blog about styling, patterning and making stays and corsets for modern, historical and fantasy looks.

Using a Projector for Corset Making or other sewing

If you are using PDF patterns instead of printing them out consider using a projector. A projector can make cutting a pattern out very quick. I have been using a projector for some months. I have a 1080p projector that in my case is mounted to the ceiling of my workspace and pointing at a work table. When I want to cut out a pattern I load it up on my computer and connect to the projector via an HDMI cable or Wifi.

Then the lines of the pattern show up on my table and I can trace them out in chalk. With Corset Pattern Maker I can go from measurements to being ready to cut in a few seconds. This allows for both very accurate line placement as well as a number of other advantages including not having to worry about some of the issues with tissue paper patterns including storage, lost pieces, tearing etc.

Choosing a projector

The first thing you must consider when choosing a projector is how much vertical space you have above your workspace. Any projector has a minimum distance between the lens and the viewing area. Any closer and the projector just won't focus. In my case between my projector and the table, there is enough range for my projector.

If you do not have enough space consider an Ultra Short Throw Projector which can be placed much closer to the target then a normal projector. However, these are often more expensive. But they can be found for more affordable prices used on Ebay and other places.

Setting up your projector

When you set up your projector the first thing to do is to square it up. Using a carpenter's bubble level make sure it is level and square. Then using a grid and a cutting mat ensure that the projected image is as square as possible. This will take an hour or two. You want to ensure that the squares of your grid match up with the square on your cutting mat. Take a look at the Facebook Projectors for Sewing group for more instructions on this. They will have up-to-date instructions on how to do this.

What I like to do before each pattern is double-check my scale. As I use several different computers to connect to the projector it can change. The CorsetPatternMaker has a 2” square in each corner for exactly this reason.

Once you have done that all that is left to do is spread out your fabric on the cutting table and start marking your lines with chalk and cut the pieces out. Make sure to smooth out any wrinkles in the fabric first.

If you want a paper copy of the pattern at this point I will take some pattern paper (or a brown paper shopping bag) and trace it out onto that with a marker or pencil.