Hello, thank you for writing this article. I do not need it so much myself, but I did get some good new ideas from your perspective. I am saying this because I have also used CDR since version 3. :) And I want to thank you for writing this because CDR is often overlooked as a good and easy to learn software to make technical illustrations. (the easy to learn, is of course relatively speaking, you still have to learn! :D) Now hopefully many will get up the eyes for CDR. :)
I use it to make doll clothes patterns all the time. The macro you use for curve length is essential yes. And if you are willing to spend more money there's also CADTools, particulary if you are used to proper CAD software. But it is not essential. There are many macros that can make things easier. It is a fun world. I just tried on CorelDraw X6 and it is so much better in the technical aspect because it has a new aligning method. Showing lines and help you move objects more perfectly.
I also wanted to clarify that CorelDraw is not essentially marketed as CAD software, but rather as (a very competent and precise) drawing software. But it can surely used as CAD software - too. And even more for the newer versions and with help of macros - even better.
Great article, Mark. I am familiar with Modaris, I have work on it several times for practice. But never thought Corel can be used as a substitute. Is it possible also to make grading the sizes in Corel?
Don't forget about Inkscape! It's not technically CAD but if you're going to use vector graphics and CAD interchangeably , don't short-change Inkscape. It's free and open-source, relatively easy to learn so long as you're not trying to use it like a bitmap graphics program, and very well suited to pattern drafting. (And adjusting and enlarging old patterns and patent pictures.)
It could use some additional features for drafting, (which is why I started working on learning Python the last time I was procrastinating about cutting into some coutil) but it's remarkably good for a free program not actually intended for this use. Last time I went searching there actually were a couple of people fiddling with drafting extensions.
Love this! just joined. I taught myself how to use corel to design my patterns and use the same techniques. Your diagram is beautifully done! Have NOT figured out how to do the zigzag and "lace" lines. Can do straight stitch.