hi everyone I’m Whitney and I post videos here on my channel to help source of all skill levels learn new projects and techniques this week I’m kicking off my sewing patterns 101 series I know there are many people have been wanting to use sewing patterns but don’t really know where to start.
so I’m going to be posting several different videos to break down sewing patterns so they are easier to understand as well as make them less daunting in today’s video we are going to go over actually selecting a sewing pattern making sure you’re getting one in the right size as well as all the information you can find on a pattern envelope before you head to the store to pick out a pattern you will want to take some measurements
you need your bust your waist and your hips measured this is because sewing patterns are not sized the same way as ready-to-wear clothing so you will need to refer to the pattern envelope to see which size of the pattern your measurements best line up with and we will discuss this more later in the video also before heading to the store you want to check out and see.
what the sales are that’s going on most stores offer their patterns at least 40% off the majority of the time but they will sometimes run sales for 99 cents for each pattern or at dollar ninety-nine per pattern and that is a really great time to go and stock up on some patterns that you think you want to use because it is much much cheaper I like to keep a running list of patterns I’m interested in and then.
when I see that the patterns are on sale I go and grab all the patterns on my list so I already have them in my collection when I’m ready to use them when you get to the store there will be a pattern book from each company and each pattern book is separated into different categories such as new arrivals vintage reproduction tops dresses costumes etc some of these sections will overlap such as a dress can be listed in the dress category as well as the vintage reproduction category.
so there is some overlap there but also don’t feel tied down to the categories if you are needing something for a costume don’t only look in the costume section you can also look and the jackets or the dresses or whatever type of garment you’re needing for your costume because it’s good to look at the specific design elements and not just how it’s being presented in the catalog.
you are making the items so you can completely tailor them to your ideas and your needs for example I was making a Jedi costume and I used a pajama pant pattern for the pants because I just needed some basic pants with pockets so this suited my needs perfectly I also used this pattern to make a Shamu dress for my daughter all.
I did was leave off the applique details and use three different fabrics instead of two so when you’re looking through the book don’t focus on the colors or the prints or trims or anything like that just look at the actual element is it a fitted jacket is that a loose jacket does it offer pockets does it have a collar are these the details that you are looking for in an item that you want to make the book will also usually include a really short description as to what the garment is and some different style options as well as the sizes it’s available in if you’re unsure how a design will look on your body type or if it will be difficult to make try looking it up on Instagram using the hashtag of the brand and the pattern number so try something like this.
This will give you an idea of how other people’s projects using that same pattern turned out after you have some patterns picked out that you’re interested in then go over to the pattern drawers they are sorted by company and then by pattern number each pattern company has different codes that they use for their patterns most of them are a four digit number so once you find the right company drawer you then go through until you find the right pattern number some patterns do come in several different size options.
so they break it up into a couple of different envelopes so like in this case this is pattern sizes six through 14 and then there was another set being offered that was sizes 16 through 24 this is where you will really need to refer to the back of the pattern envelope and look at the section where it has the measurements and figure out what your measurements match up to in relation to the pattern sizes I picked out a few patterns that I like and I headed home and so now we’re going to get into the details on the pattern envelope so let’s start by first looking at the front of the envelope and typically the front of the envelope will tell you the brand the pattern number as well as the views being offered in this pattern so there’s view a view B etc.
so now onto the back of the pattern envelope there will be some graphics to show the views again sometimes it will show the front and back views in the graphics but sometimes it will just show the back view some brands will also include how many pattern pieces are in the entire envelope as well as a short description of the garments being offered next is a list of materials that you can use to create the items from the pattern these are not the only materials you can use these are just some that are recommended they will also tell you what notions are needed such as buttons zippers trends shoulder pads or anything like that so now we get into the measurements.
there will be measurements listed for the bust the hips the waist the back link even more measurements depending on what type of garment the pattern is for and all these measurements will be in different columns and each column will align up with one size for the pattern so for example for the pattern I’m holding right now the bust is 30 and a half inches waist 23 hips 32 and a half and back of neck to waist is 15 and half and those are the measurements that are a size 6 in this simplicity pattern so you read straight down one column to see all the measurements that line up with one of the patterns sizes and remember these are not ready-to-wear sizes you can just ignore.
what you wear in store-bought clothing because the patterns are they’re sized in just a number and it doesn’t matter what number is that you have to cut out you just want to find the pattern number that will best fit your body size I think this is where the most confusion comes along when it comes to learning how to use sewing patterns if someone isn’t told ahead of time that they’re ready to wear size and they’re sewing pattern size will not match up people often just kind of ignore the measurements that are listed and just go ahead and cut out the size that they wear when they go to the store and buy an item of clothing and but I’m ready to wear clothing I am a size 10 but in sewing patterns I have a size 16 waist so there’s quite a bit different there if.
I just cut out my sewing pattern to a size 10 it would be several several inches smaller than what I could possibly fit into and then of course not everyone will fit perfectly into one size and this is true with any clothing you can go to the store buy a dress and maybe it’ll fit your waist in your hips perfectly but it’ll be a little too tight or a little too loose in the bust and that just happens the beauty of it is if making your own clothes as you learn more and more about tailoring and all that and I am by no means an expert.
but I am learning you can learn how to alter the patterns a little to best fit your body and that is so wonderful I am a 14 bust 16 waist 18 hips so it really really does matter what kind of garment I’m making and the overall ease of the garment as to what size I need to purchase for example if it’s a shirt I can get away with a size 14 if it’s a fitted dress I will probably need to go with a 16 or even an 18 in order to make sure it’s going to fit me overall and is something.
we will talk about more in a future video because there is a lot more detail that goes into selecting a pattern when you are you know all over the place in sizes so back to all the information that you find on the pattern envelope below the measurements there will often be the section that tells you how much fabric to purchase and what you do is you follow the column down from the size that you’ve selected.
so for the shirts I would follow the column down from size 14 and then it would tell me if I want to make view a using a 45 inch wide fabric I would need to purchase one and seven-eighths yards the last bit of information on the pattern envelope is the finished garment measurements and this helps you know how fitted or loose the garment will be when it’s completed or how long or short.
it is the actual layout of how this information is on the pattern envelope can vary between different brands or older or newer patterns but most the information will be there and be the same because this is what helps you select the pattern you want that will best fit your size in my next video in the pattern reading 101 series I will go over the pattern instructions and how to read and understand them so make sure you’re subscribed by clicking my picture right down there and until next time happy sewing.