Monday, December 10, 2012

Using sewing patterns {PDF vs. Paper}

When I first started sewing I didn't even know PDF patterns existed. I used to wait until the craft store would have their  99 cent pattern sale and then buy buy buy! Although it seemed like I was saving money because I waited for the sale, I was actually wasting money and giving myself a headache in the process. I always ended up throwing the the patterns away. The huge sheet of tissue paper, the confusing instructions, I didn't like any of it. Then I discovered PDF and I was hooked! I have been called a pattern hoarder more than once. I have been using the PDF patterns for a few years now and have always loved them!

  {PDF Patterns}

Like I said, I own A LOT of PDF patterns. I haven't even tried a lot of them and there is a reason for that. With a PDF pattern, I have to print the pattern pieces, then cut them out, then tape many of them together. And this is for EACH size. I don't mind doing that but I do think it is time consuming and I am using a lot of my husbands printer ink that he needs for school. I also find myself running back and forth from my craft room to my bedroom (where the closest computer is) to read the next step. I guess I could print out the whole PDF and have the instructions there with me but who wants to print out 20-40 pages per PDF? I don't! I am not complaining about the PDF patterns because I will still use mine, I just find them a little inconvenient.

{Paper Patterns}

I have recently started buying  Chelsea Andersen's pattern designs. I have used her McCalls pattens before but I am not a fan of McCalls or Simplicity patterns at all. I did however, buy just about all of her paper patterns from various Etsy shops starting on Black Friday. I LOVE her style and really wanted to try it. I was afraid I wouldn't like it because of the tissue paper they are printed on. After looking through the ONE sheet of instructions I thought it looked very simple! So I gave it a go!

{The dreaded tissue paper patterns}

I know MANY sewers that don't like to use these patterns. Who can blame them? I would get all excited to get a pattern for 99 cents at the craft store. When I opened the pattern there was this giant sheet, and sometimes 2 or 3 sheets of tissue paper. It makes it a pain to unwrap it and cut around that thin paper. You are left with bunch of pieces and they never put away nicely or easily.  I started out using "The Olivia Top" by Pink Fig aka Chelsea Andersen. I found it very simple! I did think the way she sontructed the top was a little strange. Only because it was different than any Peasant pattern I have ever used. It was still simple and the end result was fantastic!  So, here is the very simple method I used to {almost} bypass dealing with the tissue paper. Most of you will say....."Duh! That is a very simple fix!" haha By buying the tissue paper patterns from the Pink Fig line, you will also be bypassing confusing instructions as well. Chelsea's instructions are very simple compared to that of McCalls or Simplicity.

Here is the pattern I used:

What you will need to convert tissue paper to the paper easily. 

Roll of white paper from the craft store.
Black marker
A few sheets of paper
Scissors (you would need those anyway)
Tissue Paper Pattern

1. Lay your tissue paper sheet out on a large table or floor (not carpet or a rug).

2. You are going to trace around the pattern pieces by size. So if you want to make a size 5 trace around all of the size 5 pieces.  Make sure you lay your sheets of paper under the tissue paper before you trace because the marker will bleed through the tissue paper. I just used one sheet of paper and moved it around as I traced.

3 Lay your roll of paper on top of the traced tissue paper and trace onto the white paper from the roll. I used an ink pen to trace onto the white paper. Make sure you also transfer all of the markings on from the pattern. Write Front, back, sleeve, size and all other information you will need to know when referring back to this pattern.

4. After you get everything traced onto your roll of white paper just cut it out. You now have a paper pattern instead of a tissue paper pattern! I have no idea why I didn't think of this before. It's such an easy fix!

                                       Everything is all right in front of me, just the way I like it.

 This also solves my issue of saving printer ink and time running back and forth from Computer to craft room reading instructions because I now have everything I need sitting right here in front of me. The instructions for The Olivia Top are so simple that I won't even have to use the instructions the next time I make one, which will be today since I am so in love with this top.

        Here is my end result. I love it! I wanted mine to be all white because I plan to use it as an under shirt to go with other outfits.I also chose to not shirr the bottom of my Olivia Top.

        I tried it on my daughter and it fits beautifully! Better then ANY other peasant pattern I have ever tried! She gives the option for short sleeve or 3/4 sleeve and both are right on! Exactly where the sleeve should be. I am now hooked on Chelsea Andersen's designs and I cannot wait to try them all!  If you have wanted to try a Pink Fig pattern out but have been afraid of that dreaded tissue paper, Don't be! Just try it! You will be thrilled with your end result! I have many more to try out and I cannot wait to fill my daughters closet with many more Pink Fig designs!