Hey fellow sewists, it’s Suzanne here! I work closely with Jennifer on Drape, Workroom Social’s new line of sewing patterns designed specifically for drapey fabrics. A home sewer for decades, I believe a huge part of a sewing pattern’s value is in the instruction book and the PDF itself. After all, it doesn’t matter how amazing a design is if you can’t figure out how to put it together!
Many of us in the sewing community are learning as we go, with each project teaching us new techniques. And while I can argue there’s value in making mistakes (at least you learned something, right?), wouldn’t we all like to avoid major sewing fails whenever possible?
So in creating Workroom Social’s new line of sewing patterns, Jennifer and I thought long and hard about all the places users can go wrong with a sewing pattern. We wanted each Drape pattern to not only be easy and intuitive to use, we also wanted it to be a teaching tool. It all comes back to Workroom Social’s mission: empowering sewists like you to make clothes you want to wear!
PDF sewing pattern features
I love the instant gratification of downloadable sewing patterns. Say it’s 7:00 p.m. on a Saturday and I want to make something NOW. Thanks to assemble-at-home PDF sewing patterns, I can order, print, tape, and sew without even putting on pants! Amazing! But in my haste to get to the actual sewing steps, I have made many mistakes over the years, from cutting out one piece in the wrong size, to ignoring the construction order only to discover later that I’ve bobbled the whole thing. (I call those “crimes against fabric”).
So to help you avoid those same errors (and save valuable time!), we started by designing the tiled PDF itself.
- We’ve included triangle matchpoints only on the pages that actually need to be aligned and assembled. That way you can save time cutting and taping (“cutting and taping PDF patterns is my favorite thing,” said no one ever).
- You also can’t miss the numbers on our PDF pages; they’re huge!
- We’ve included a “read-me” file in the digital package that shows exactly how the pages tile together, so you’re never just blindly taping pages.
- The sewing pattern is divided into two size groups: 0-8 and 8-16. We do this for two reasons: 1) it makes the pattern easier to read and 2) you don’t have to print as many pages. Yay, trees!
- If the thought of cutting, assembling and taping a print-at-home PDF sewing pattern makes you want to find a new hobby altogether, we’ve got you covered; Drape sewing patterns also have copy shop versions, so you can save yourself the effort and send it to your local printshop!
A closer look at the sewing pattern
Even with different styles of dashed lines in a multi-sized sewing pattern, it can be difficult to cut or trace the size you need. The lines often cross, or you lose track of which dashed line corresponds to what size (guilty as charged!). So with Workroom Social’s sewing patterns, we nested each pattern piece carefully, staggering them so that no lines cross, and that no important symbols or construction markings land on a seam in the paper. We also put size numbers on every single side of each pattern piece, so you never get off track while you are tracing or cutting. (We also find having the sizes marked on each line helps later when you pull a pattern you haven’t worked on in a while, and can’t remember which size you cut!)
Each pattern piece is clearly marked with how many pieces to cut in each fabric. We also included checkboxes with the cutting information, so if you unpin the pattern piece from your fabric/lining/interfacing, you will know whether you’ve already cut it or not. Fewer cutting errors=less fabric waste! (And if you don’t pay attention to the cut information on the pattern itself, we’ve got something special for you in our workbook! More on that in our next blog post.)
Last, I wanted you to know that all Workroom Social sewing patterns are graded and checked by a professional grading company, so you can be confident each size meets the specifications as listed.
Watch for more details on our thoughtfully designed workbook later this week. Drape 1001, a flowy, sophisticated blouse, is available now!