How do I flatten this blanket so it can be used as a cut template?

I designed a saddle and blankets that are currently modelled on top of a horse model. I want to flatten the blankets so that I can export them and print them full scale on paper to use as a template to cut the fabric out. The blankets have no thickness currently.

I’m currently using a simple UV approach where in edit mode i select all the faces, and hit unwrap. This does create the general shape, however I’m not sure if it’s accurate. I’m not sure if it’s taking into account the variable changes of curves of the body. How do I ensure that the UV unwrapped will be an accurate profile that I can cut? To take an extreme example, to flatten a sphere accurately for cutting, id first need to make a seam halfway to the middle…this would ensure that when I printed it on paper and traced out and cut whatever fabric, that the final material would sit perfectly on that spherical shape…

Hey, no experience with this, but this addon within blender sounds relevent here.

1 Like

Yep you need an “unwrapping” method that doesnt change the inner angles and size of faces

I did use the normal version the other day (more likey month) and it already got some nice results… just try it.

I tried it for the past 15mins and it’s not working out…it is seemingly unwrapping every single face of the sculpted mesh.

Thank you. This paper model seems to unwrap each face and doesn’t treat it as a whole.

What “normal” are you referring to?

Im getting this strange result…tested it on a half sphere and im getting this…i just need it to tell me the simplest cut shape for fabric:

Oh yes now i see your model seems to be to detailed… and now i remember i did something which i subdivided and had to choose a lower poly version or…
Maybe just try a decimated copy ??? Okay then it gets inprecise… to bad.
Ups you replied while i’m typing and search for myself a bit (idea: in CAD this sometimes is used and yes autocad seems to have this… maybe freecad…):

  • With normal i meant the shipped addon which eem to be the one on github (as i now know)…
  • Simplest solutions is sometimes something that doesn’t exists :wink:
1 Like

Mathematically spoken is that not possible in one piece.
It cannot be done without getting wrinkles or stretched parts if you want one easy shape cut out.
Specially not if you use a durable fabric. It need such gaps and parts that have to be stitched together.

1 Like

I tried an “unrollsrf” in rhino but it crashed after 10mins of stalling… hmm

Haha i was too fats at reading i thought: Rhino ? Wait wait what? Ii thought a horse? Who wants to ride a rhino? … (except Wakanda Warriors) and now i’m :rofl: … at least i’m having some fun here…
Maybe rethink your workflow for the blankets? Design a 2D blanket and use clothsim to look if this will fall as intended (i think this is even how something lik MravelousDesigner works.) Puhh but the saddle…

Hey Peter,
it’s Paperwolf here, maybe I can help you :slight_smile:

So having a nice and round modeled object is not the best way of getting a clean textile unwrap. Some time ago I’ve experimented with Clo3D which would do exactly that: You’d have a 3D base model and sew and stitch your saddle cover ontop of it. and the program will give you a true tailor unwrap pattern.

A better way for us Blender 3D people would be that you’d model a VERY lowpoly version of your blanket (similar to what I do with my Paperwolf animals), trying to imagine how you would cut it out of textile.
And then you can do the paper unwrap (either with the Blender addon or with a 3rd party program like Pepakura Designer). This still will give you some cuts (but you can place the cuts where it makes sense, trying to keep as many parts together as possible).
And then you’d draw over the paper pattern, round the edges, give it more a tailor-like pattern style.
Textile is flexible (unlike paper), so you can stretch and shear it a lot. But you’ll have to do some experimenting to get the best cuts.

Does this help?

Edit: Oh, just forgot one thing: If you are doing a regular UV unwrap with your highres model, with a checker texture, and you try to have as little distortion as possible, you should be fine cutting it out of textile (which can stretch a little)!


1 Like

Well an unwrapping algorithm is taking a threedimensional shape and transfers it to a twodimenional one. Such an algorithm can just find a solution for any given model if it has some degrees of freedom in the layout. And as paper is flexible but not strechable, these paper unwrappers make cuts comparatively often as its their only way to ensure there is a solution, a behaviour that is quite opposing to conformal maps, but it should fit your problem better.

If your model is able to be layed out flat without cuts then hey perfect, but otherwise you still get a quasi flat layout you have to adapt and reconnect manually to finish it, reintroducing some deformations.

There is an commercial tool called papercura or so, where you can influence the cuts. Maybe this works better for you. Hope it helps.

Edit: Sorry just saw that @wolframk also mentioned the tool yeah its called Pepakura.

1 Like

hahahaha I should have specified Rhino 3d software. Glad it brought a laugh! Thanks for your help. I did look into adding a cloth simulation but it still just creates a meshed model like the one I have so it doesn’t help me properly flatten it.

Hey Wolf. Actually that makes a whole lot of sense. I’m going to try it and report back.

Thanks. I looked it up and it’s called pepakura… looks promising but not much dif than what paper unfold does in blender?

Just had a peak at your instagram… love that paper camel! Nice work.

1 Like

I never tried the Blender addon because I’m using Pepakura since 10 years and own a license. But yes, principle is probably the same. So you should be fine with the Blender addon.
But also try the UV unwrap since textile is stretchable.

1 Like