15 Tips For What To Do With Your Sewing Pattern

Written By Gary Spirer Published June 24th, 2010

What to do with a sewing pattern once you take it out of the envelope.

You have searched the pattern books, found the perfect pattern for your material and now you are off home to make it up.

What is the first thing you need to do?

You will have selected a pattern for your size, when you open the envelope, everything is folded neatly.

Step 1. Take the instruction sheet and it will show you how to set out the pattern on your fabric, there will be the lay-outs for the different widths of fabric, and for with or without nap. Some fabrics you can cut out your pattern pieces in opposite directions others you will have to lay the pattern pieces all going the same way or else the fabric will show a different shade, velvets and corduroys are a good example.

Step 2. Cut around the edge of the seam allowances with paper scissors, not the scissors you will be cutting the fabric with.

Step 3. Always check the pattern pieces against you, you can pin the various pieces together and try it on to see if there needs to be any adjustments before you start cutting the fabric.

Step 4. With your fabric right side out, place and pin the pattern pieces according to the layout for your fabric width and cut your fabric pattern pieces out.

Step 5. You will see triangles known as notches. circles, arrows, broken lines, unbroken lines. On some patterns you will also see on the seam stitching lines arrows. This is according to the pattern maker the direction to stitch that seam.

Step 6. Once you have cut out all the pieces, get your tracing carbon. Fold the tracing carbon so that when you place it between the fabric and trace, you will have the pattern marked on the inside of your fabric.

Step 7. If possible get a plastic tracing wheel, it will not cut into your pattern tissue. some metal tracing wheels will cut the pattern and make it hard to re-use that pattern again.

Step 8. Transfer all the pattern markings to the inside of your fabric, use a rule to guide along the long seam lines.

Step 9. Now you are ready to start sewing your garment and everything you had on your pattern is now on the inside of your fabric.

Step 10. Once again, check the pieces against you to make sure the fit is right.

Step 11. Pin, tack, baste where necessary, press as you go, fit as you go and follow the instructions, take it step by step.

Step 12. As a general guide when deciding on what length of fabric to purchase you need twice your length plus the length of the sleeve if you are making something with a sleeve. For skirts or pants you will need twice your length.

Step 13. When looking for fabrics, anything that feels stiff will have a lot of what is called sizing and when it is laundered could go very limp and not hold its shape.

Step 14. A good test for crushing is to scrunch the fabric in your hand and see if the creases will fall out. If they stay, then this will always crush no matter how carefully your press it.

Step 15. Purchase your notions when you purchase your fabric, thread, zipper, bias binding, interfacing, lining, check the pattern envelope for what you will need to complete your garment.

Well that’s the main points for getting your pattern tight and happier sewing.

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