First, I draft the pattern on printer paper:
I only know the basics of pattern drafting really, but most garments meant for daily wear are quite similar. If you can draft a basic bodice with and without darts, a few different skirts (skirts are easy!) pants, a few types of sleeves and a few collars, you can basically draft most regularly worn garments. All the details are just minor tweaks. My mum is a seriously good pattern drafter and took professional courses when I was a kid, I’m self-taught and never progressed beyond her first coursebook. The method I use doesn’t require complicated maths (if you can pay with cash money, you can do this) but I know some do.
This is going to be a T-shirt dress from a knit fabric and it’s the first time I’ve drafted a pattern without darts. I was gifted a dress like that a few years back and it’s wearing out. It looks surprisingly nice on me even though I’m quite curvy. So I found a nice fabric in my stash to make a similar dress.
Next I draft the full-sized pattern onto translucent patternmaking paper, cut it out, pin it on the fabric and cut it out. I use a hand gauge (by Prym) to make sure I cut the right seam allowance. I know American ready-made patterns come with built-in seam allowances and it just makes my head hurt. I’ve never managed to finish a garment made from a pattern like that.
Next step will be tailor’s tacks! I always stitch them around the neckline, top of the sleeves, around the armhole etc, but I get the best results when I stitch around the sides too (I don’t do the hems).