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Forum > Beginner's Forum > Cut or Trace? ( Moderated by EleanorSews)

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Cut or Trace?
Am I the only one who cuts out her patterns?
La Elvin
La Elvin  Friend of PR
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Date: 11/8/12 6:37 AM

I'm reading these amazing blogs, and seeing all these beautiful vintage patterns for sale... and its making me think. Am I the ONLY person who cuts up her patterns? Everyone seems to trace... now I'm feeling guilty attacking my patterns with scissors. Help!

westmoon
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Date: 11/8/12 7:02 AM

I do a mix of cutting and tracing. I am used to tracing because I use magazines more than envelope patterns and of course you HAVE to trace magazine patterns. I tend to cut out envelope patterns only if I'm using the largest size, I know I won't need to make any adjustments (Simplicity skirt patterns, for example, fit me fine straight out the envelope) and I can preserve other pattern/size information easily in case I want to make to a smaller size or make a different view at a later stage.

I think how committed you are to tracing also depends on how much you pay for patterns. Many Americans on here seem to buy envelope patterns from the big four for US$0.99 to $2 at a local shop when the sales are on. They can afford to get a new copy if they cut one out but then decide they want a different size or view or whatever. I'm in the UK and by contrast, even buying second-hand on eBay, I can rarely get a pattern for less than 3.50 (US$5.60) and buying new, rarely for less than 6 (US$9.50) and a newly released pattern can easily cost 10 (US$16). When you're paying 10-15 times more for the pattern to start with, tracing just makes more sense.

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PattyE
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Date: 11/8/12 8:49 AM

I cut mine too!

heathergwo
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Date: 11/8/12 9:25 AM

I'm a cutter!

Although, unless I'm cutting the largest size, I tend to cut out the largest and then fold the pattern in to cut down to the smaller size so I keep the integrity of the pattern.

I have traced, but only those that REQUIRE it - seems SUCH A PAIN to me!

But yes, 99% of my pattern only cost 99cents, so it's not as if that's a lot of money going down the drain.

Cut away and feel guilt free!!!

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Brother Innovis 1250D
Babylock Enlighten
Singer Curvy 8763
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cathy45
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Date: 11/8/12 9:35 AM

I cut the largest size too then fold down to the needed size. The pices are still intact just no longer attached to each other. Carefully folded back into envelope or, if too fluffy to fit back in, envelope and pieces placed in larger ziploc.

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Cathy

"I'm not messy, I'm creative" - Mary Engelbreight

idahodogs
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Date: 11/8/12 10:53 AM

I'm with westmoon - cheap patterns I cut, good patterns I trace. When I first started sewing, I bought a LOT of Big4 patterns, which I cut into (that's what my mom did). Often, I had to recut in a different size and ended up having to buy another copy (a pain, but easier than tracing).

Once I found PatternReview, I learned about buying higher quality patterns and tracing them - and that's what I do now. I bought a few Jalie shirt patterns and a Loes Hines skirt pattern, and I've been tracing off those in different sizes/combinations as I get the fit right.

Also, a lot of the cheaper patterns are for garments that are interesting, but I wouldn't need more than one of. So there's no point in saving the pattern, cause I won't make it again anyhow. I do have a Butterick skirt pattern that I originally cut out, then loved so much that I backed it with freezer paper to make it last longer

marec
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Date: 11/8/12 10:56 AM

I cut patterns up too. I will even discard pattern pieces I know I won't use. For example, I love wardrobe patterns, but don't have a use for pencil skirts. Those are recycled. As much as I admire those who have few patterns and are able to build a wardrobe around TNT patterns, I am like a magpie with shiney objects...I just like collecting and trying patterns.

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my blog: http://kf-biblioblog.blogspot.com/
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Kathi R
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Date: 11/8/12 11:04 AM

I usually cut the sale patterns and trace the investment patterns. When I need 2 sizes of the same pattern (2 daughters), I do a combination of cutting and tracing directly on the fabric. I will separate the pieces, fold to the correct cutting length, cut all the seams that are the same for each size and then transfer the neckline and curves that are unique directly on the fabric with carbon paper and a tracing wheel.

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2012 : starting stash 386, net additions 206, used 164, ending stash 428...I'm never going to get in front of this pile of fabric!

AdaH
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Date: 11/8/12 11:12 AM

I cut and like Marec, I recycle the pattern pieces I will never use. I also pitch patterns that havn't behaved well.
When I started sewing back in the dark ages, my friends were appalled that I cut Kwik Sew and Stretch & Sew patterns.

I traced my first ever Burda Style pattern a few days ago. Trying to figure out what lines to trace was a challenge.


-- Edited on 11/8/12 11:23 AM --

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Ada

kkkkaty
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In reply to Kathi R <<
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Date: 11/8/12 11:17 AM

Quote: Kathi R
I usually cut the sale patterns and trace the investment patterns.

me too. More cutting than tracing. If I can replace a pattern easily and cheaply, it's not worth my time to trace....

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