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Forum > Sewing Techniques and Tips > Tracing off in plastic. ( Moderated by MissCelie)

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Tracing off in plastic.
Your experience, wisdom and recommendations so far?
jadamo00
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jadamo00
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New York USA
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Date: 7/9/12 4:08 PM

I don't cut my patterns up. I trace them off in plastic. I have used:

-- clear dropcloths from the Dollar Store
-- clear tablecloths from the Dollar store

These are lovely: crystal clear makes it easy to place on fabric (so you don't wind up with a big polka dot in your crotch...), folds so nice and flat, and unfolds flat, too.

I heard that sturdier dropcloths can be cheap at hardware stores. Someone recommended 3mil thickness.

I bought a 2 mil dropcloth at Home Depot because they didn't have any 3 mil. It seems to work fine and it's cheap enough: 9 x 12 for about $3. It's not crystal clear -- it's a little bit milky, but I think I like it.

If you have experience, advice, or recommendations on tracing off in plastic, I'd love getting any wisdom from ya!

j.







-- Edited on 7/9/12 6:32 PM --

jannw
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jannw  Friend of PR
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In reply to jadamo00 <<


Date: 7/9/12 4:57 PM

I love plastic..I use the 3 mm. It does look white, but is clear when you smooth it out. I trace and cut on my living room floor (small apt) and I have some cheap pins that turned out too thick for sewing. I smooth the plastic and pattern down and use the pins stuck into the carpet at an angle. I place them just outside the pattern lines. They hold very well, with no shifting. I use a Sharpee pen and let it dry for a couple of seconds before you run your hand over or it will smudge.

The plastic I use comes in a 3x50' ft roll. I just cut off the size of the pattern sheet I'm tracing, so as not to deal with an unweildly roll. I've found that I can even sew it up for a quick fit check.

------
2009-113.25 yds
2010-115.5
2011-80.25+30+donated
2012 86.3 yds..
2013 21.0
Everyone who sews seriously has a stockpile of fabrics, because it is natural to purchase more than can be sewn in any one season" Singer, Timesaving Sewing, 1987

jadamo00
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jadamo00
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In reply to jannw <<


Date: 7/9/12 6:29 PM

Oh, Jannw: I really WANTED the 3 mil. but they only had it in the gazzillion yard roll for a million dollars.

I also trace on the living room (wood) floor!

Also use Sharpies: in different colors. I'll trace a neck in orange if I'm going to change it and then trace in the final design in black. And, yes, I also let the ink "cure" a little after I trace!

And I also figgered out to slice off a piece of the roll to fit the pattern sheet and I can then pop the rest of the neat roll back into the package.

Do you remember how much you pay for the 3 x 50' roll? And where you bought it?

Thanks!



j.





-- Edited on 7/9/12 6:31 PM --

annemie
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Date: 7/9/12 7:09 PM

Just because I had it handy I used a shower curtain liner from the dollar store. It is slightly opaque when you roll it up, but clear enough to see everything you want to mark. Because it is also slightly pebbely I find it easier to mark than the clear plastic and it doesn't slip so much. And used as a pattern I can see it better on top of the fabric. Hope they are not discontinued when I will need a new one.

jannw
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In reply to jadamo00 <<


Date: 7/9/12 7:14 PM

I guess you don't want to stick pins in your wood floor then??? Do you tape it??? I do my adjustments in green Sharpee (for go)..if it's a tricky spot or I think I may want to change it. I use the red Love my pack of colored Sharpees!!

I buy mine in the Paint department of Fred Meyer, a local chain and it's about $9-12 a roll..I try to buy it on sale...Too bad about the pricing in your area. You might check other departments. Most of the large home improvement stores carry it here reasonably, but it may be cheaper in the paint or hardware departement vs the housewears dept. Years ago, the WalMart carried it from three different manufactures in three departments at three different prices!.

------
2009-113.25 yds
2010-115.5
2011-80.25+30+donated
2012 86.3 yds..
2013 21.0
Everyone who sews seriously has a stockpile of fabrics, because it is natural to purchase more than can be sewn in any one season" Singer, Timesaving Sewing, 1987

jadamo00
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jadamo00
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New York USA
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In reply to annemie <<


Date: 7/9/12 7:14 PM

annemie, I always worry that the Dollar Store is going to discontinue the clear plastic tablecloths for a buck! That has been my "go-to" tracing material for awhile now.

LynnG
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Date: 7/10/12 10:59 AM

After reading a post about using plastic, I tried the 3mm drop cloth for my last Kwik Sew tracing. Worked great! I'm a convert.



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Date: 7/10/12 11:02 AM

Wal-Mart carries it in a 3 pack for about $4, which is what I use. It winds up being cheaper then the dollar general/family dollar stores drop cloths by about half.

jadamo00
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In reply to 0 <<


Date: 7/10/12 11:59 AM

Okay, the 2 mil seems to work fine. But now I'm rabid to get the 3 mil.!



j.

MNBarb
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Date: 7/10/12 12:45 PM

I use 2 mil from Home Depot. I like the weight because it still allows me to "tissue fit". I feel a little guilty about the environmental aspects of plastic but only trace patterns that are more expensive, have numerous fitting issues or will be made multiple times. The .99 or 1.99 sale patterns get sliced and diced.

Clear plastic is great for matching plaids and stripes also for overlaying to see if pattern edges are lining up correctly. The plastic doesn't wrinkle so no pressing of pattern is required.

I don't pin or tape. I've learned that, with a few swipes of the hand, there is enough static electricity generated to fuse the paper and plastic together temporarily so they don't move around while being traced.

------
Barb
"I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work." Thomas Edison
"I not only use all the brains I have, but all I can borrow." Woodrow Wilson

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