November 07, 2011

Saving a Pattern

There is a fine line between frugal and cheap. The latter conjures images of Scrooge, Mr. Burns and the lady at the grocery store who walks around with a calculator and berates the cashier when charged a few pennies more than she had anticipated. I tend to try to stay in the frugal category and I hope this doesn't set me over the line.

I know/hope that I'll only get to wear this skirt (assuming it turns out well) for a few months before I shrink out of it but I want to make it anyway. I like the pattern for the skirt and assuming it turns out well I'm sure I'll want to make it again. Right now I'm in the largest size--and even that's pushing it--which is no big deal but I know I'll be smaller soon so I don't want to cut out the largest size and cut over the smaller sizes. Here's where I hope I'm not being cheap: even though I only paid, like $1.99 max for this pattern at Joanns I don't want to buy it again but I also don't want to use pattern paper if I can help it because that gets expensive (not to mention time-consuming) if I retrace every size of every pattern. So this time I tried cutting out the outside line even where the outside line was a different size then folding the paper until just the size I needed was on the outside.

What do you think? Genius or cheap?

I also learned how to use transfer paper. Usually I would simply lift the pattern and try to line up the marks (I also discovered that I've been doing this on the wrong side--that is to say the right side). But I couldn't find a washable crayola marker that would show up on this fabric (man, maybe I am cheap) so I decided to try transfer paper. Aside from being much more messy than I expected, once I figured out what I was doing it was really simple, accurate and very fast. Bonus, it looks like the paper can be used multiple times! Anyway I'm sold on it--especially for patterns with a lot of marks and darts like this one has.

So that's my progress so far. I'm hoping that the sewing will move quickly. Happy sewing, my friend!


  1. so Genius, but only if it works! ;)
    and I'm a little stuck on how to use the transfer paper. it looks like you are slicing it with that little tool (which i don't have... do i need it?), does that mean you can't use it again? maybe i'm just confused on how it's being used.

  2. I never knew either but I had heard of transfer paper so I looked up how to use it and lo and behold there was the little spiky tool that came in my beginner's sewing kit years ago! You layer it like this: pattern, fabric, paper with the chalky side of the paper facing the wrong side of the fabric then you use the little tool and push down where you want to mark. It doesn't rip the pattern (I was afraid it would). Just follow the lines you want to transfer. I used the round plastic tip of a pin to transfer small dots.