Today we'll focus on preparing patterns with ten tips to help you get set for your next sewing project.
1. Multi-size patterns are wonderful for "multi-size" figures. However, it can be confusing when you are cutting them out and transitioning from one size to another. I suggest highlighting your selected size(s) multi-size with a highlighter marker. Use the marker to trace over all the lines, taking care to use a piece of protective paper underneath as you trace, as markers will bleed through thin pattern paper.
2. For patterns designed for knits, consider tracing main pattern pieces that are designed to cut on a fold, cutting a full pattern. Simply fold a piece of pattern tracing cloth in half, making sure it is large enough for your pattern piece. Place your pattern on the fold and cut. Transfer all marking, notches, etc. Having a full pattern is especially helpful when cutting prints.
3. If you find that you have to sew with designated chunks of time instead of a marathon, prepare you pattern and lay out your fabric so it can relax the day or evening before you plan to cut out. When you do get started the cutting process will seem less tedious with the pattern already prepared.
4. When trimming pattern tissue you'll get the most accurate sizing by trimming away all of the black outline. Be sure to press pattern tissue with a warm dry iron to remove wrinkles and flatten so the pattern is true to size. Hang pieces from clip or skirt hanger.
5. If your pattern includes multiple languages, highlight your preferred language with highlighter. Then you can concentrate on the instructions that matter and easily ignore the rest of the words on the paper.
6. Review pattern instructions before you start. If some of the wording is unfamiliar or the instructions don't make complete sense, now is the time to get help. Reach out to a sewing friend or call the pattern company for guidance. The big three have the following help line numbers:
McCalls, Vogue, Butterick, Kwik Sew help line: Call 1-800-782-0323
8. Make notes during and after making your project and store notes with pattern to record alterations or modifications should you decide to use the pattern again.
9. Store patterns that are true "winners" in a separate location so they're easy to find when you need a quick win with a tried and true success story.
10. Organize all supplies, pattern, fabric and necessary notions, keeping everything you need together in a box or zipper bag. Be sure to buy all the thread and notions you need at once, so colors match your fabric and you have everything you need when you're ready to start stitching.
I'd love to know if you found any of these ten tips helpful. Feel free to share your own in the comments below. Happy Sewing!