French curves are very helpful for perfecting curved lines on the pattern. There are different French curves available with a variety of shapes suitable for drafting curves for armholes, necklines, crotched seams, curved dart legs, lapels. My patternmaking instructor recommended using a 17” French curve (as the one on the image) because, with careful shifting, it can draw all the mentioned shapes and more.
If you need to draw two identical curves on a pattern, make marks on the French curve where you started and stopped drawing the shape. Use pencil (it can be removed easily by rubbing the mark with a finger). Flip or shift the curve to the new location.
Some instructors recommend using the Fashion Ruler. “It combines the functions of a hip curve, ruler and French curve”, claims the description for one available on Amazon. I, personally, find the French curve to be more versatile, and also own a hip curve.
P.S. If you missed the original post on Sewing Gadget Mania and the opportunity to win the Little Black Dress Book, read it here.