How to remove darts from a pattern!

The easiest way to create a dart free pattern is to "release the darts".

Releasing the darts is simply a case of erasing them or just not sewing them when the garment is made. If you have a shoulder or side bust dart you may wish to move this to the waist for ease of use.

However, this is not suited to all designs. This will create a loose and floppy, rather boxy looking garment, with no fitting.

To create a garment where it still fits to the body but has no visible darts you need to do a crafty bit of dart manipulation.

Note: although the garment will be fitted, it will not be suitable for all designs or body shapes as the curves created by using darts will be lost.

1. Take your bodice pattern and close any bust darts, adding them to the waist.
2. Draw on new dart legs from the base of the original dart to the under arm.


3. Measure 6mm from the dart leg closest to the middle and mark this point. Redraw the dart leg from this point.
4. Fold the pattern to the new dart leg and close the dart. Tape the pattern in place to secure.
5. Redraw the waist line from the side seam (use extra paper taped behind the pattern if needed.)


Use the same method of both front and back bodice patterns.

Optional bust dart removal: If you have a side bust dart but don't wish to remove it, draw dart legs from the original horizontally across the pattern stopping at the centre front, and close the dart along these new lines.

Note: The 6mm reduction on the darts is important. This adds a little ease which is needed for an improved fit.


Having learnt the method for removing the dart from a bodice you can apply the same principles to everything else.
If there is more than one dart on a skirt pattern piece convert into one.
1. Draw new dart legs from the original to the corner of the pattern.
3. Fold the new dart to close and tape in place to secure.
4. Redraw the waist line, use extra paper if needed.
Use the same method as the skirt for trousers.


Removal of darts from dresses is a little more difficult as the darts are contained within the dress.
The best way to perform this is to split the pattern into bodice and skirt parts. Then follow the instructions for those pattern pieces, and rejoin them to reform the dress.
You'll need to slightly lengthen the side seams to meet correctly again. Place a piece of paper behind the join and tape in place.