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PatternReview Blog > PatternReview on Facebook: Digital Patterns
PatternReview on Facebook: Digital PatternsBy DianeSev on 4/22/13 3:30 PM

PatternReview on Facebook: Digital Patterns

We just came out with our own digital patterns.

PatternReview  Summer Street Dress Downloadable Pattern

Tell us about your experiences with digital patterns. What do you like about them? What don't you like about them? What stops you from trying them? What was the best sewing project you did with a digital pattern? Please share with us in the comment field below!

Or, join the discussion on Facebook.

Here’s what other members said on Facebook:

Personally, I really like digital patterns! I love that I can decide on a piece of clothing and have the pattern ready to go in an hour or so. The best item I've ever made with a divi-pattern must be a jacket from Salme Patterns. Everything came together really easy and I just love the design! Have a great weekend!

Salme 129 Peplum Top – Digital Download

 Salme 129 Peplum Top – Digital Download

I like them as long as extensive printing and taping them together is not involved.

I don't care for them either, although I did buy a linen dress from a company in Australia, and they offered the option to download a full size version (i.e., large format printer and large pieces of paper required, no taping). That wasn't so bad. In general, I'll buy conventional patterns, I believe.

Like them because I can print and cut to size without worrying about saving the pattern to use for other sizes. When I need another size I just reprint and cut.

Rock and Roll Top

I like them because it's nice to just think about something you want to make and just click and purchase, however I find the task of sticking them together a bit tedious, which takes away from the joy of just starting to sew it's double edged for me.

We see a lot of digital patterns come through our company... Some done with CAD software like Illustrator, while others are non-indexed photographic images, some repeating, some not--depending on the end product. It's super interesting to see how much variety there is out there in the creative designer mind.

I've used Lekala patterns before and while it is a pain to print them out, they ARE very inexpensive and customized to your measurements. I have more of an issue with patterns that are sold as a digital download for the same price as the paper version, or patterns that make you jump through hoops in order to print them. The Lekala patterns are delivered to your email as a PDF, which makes them very easy to work with.

norsk sewed this dress from a digital pattern

norsk sewed this dress from a digital pattern.

I didn't care for the one I did, it was one of the free patterns from hotpatterns on It came out ok, just didn't like taping it all together.

I love digital patterns. Patterns in nz are very expensive and not readily available. I print more than I buy in shops.

Worth it if you really like the pattern style and would cost heaps more to pay for paper pattern plus postage which is usually more than the pattern cost especially if purchasing from overseas (which is common for us in Australia) plus the lengthy wait for it to arrive. You can also download and start prepping at any hour of the day or night whenever the sewing need is there. I don't mind the taping, etc., if the markings are clear and actually do match up. Also if saved as a file can reprint for style/size changes.

PatternRunway 1102 Sweet Shorts

poppykettle in Australia sewed these PatternRunway 1102 Sweet Shorts for her vacation.

I'm nervous about trying them because I'm not sure the printed version would be true to size. Maybe I've just not researched them enough. Also, they'd have to be significantly cheaper than the paper patterns.

I have printed out 2 digital patterns and was very happy with both, I found the taping together easy and it was nice to have an idea, find a pattern and start sewing all without leaving the house! They do take up a little more room to store. I can't imagine ever only using them but I think they can be very convenient at times.

Oliver + S Lazy Days Skirt

This Oliver + S Lazy Days Skirt is available as a free digital pattern.  Free patterns are often digital downloads.

I like the digital hat patterns for kids. Just found the Oliver +S free bucket hat pattern and before that I have made hats from a pattern from etsy. I wouldn't like printing patterns for myself but kids' hats are so small that I don't mind.

Check out our new digital patterns, the Summer Street Dress and the Rock and Roll Top.

Look at the other digital patterns on PatternReview.


9 Comments      Login to Add a Comment
julie w said...
I have Patternmaster software so have been used to taping ( I use glue-stick) patterns together for a long time. I like to support independent pattern makers so downloadable patterns are instantly gratifying, usually cost effective when postage is taken into account and these days becoming more and more available.
5/9/13 9:40 AM
avatrx said...
I've purchased several digital patternsfrom Lekala. I have a really had time putting them together and they have no photos. Simply instructions. I'm more of a visual learner, so I need pictures. Let me add that if they would allow you to print to a large digital printer - it might not be so bad, but taping together 28-30 pieces? I guess I'm just not up for that.
4/24/13 5:58 PM
avatrx said...
I've purchased several digital patternsfrom Lekala. I have a really had time putting them together and they have no photos. Simply instructions. I'm more of a visual learner, so I need pictures.
4/24/13 5:57 PM
MicNanDec said...
I personally haven't made any yet. But considering some of the comments I see here, I think I would like to try one, especially from one of the independent pattern companies. They have some really nice patterns out there. But I think I would still prefer paper patterns when available.
4/24/13 6:54 AM
SJ Kurtz said...
I make digital patterns and was curious: if I put the smaller pieces inside the larger ones, so that you'd cut them out and make holes (or trace them, more effort) in the larger pieces, would this work for you? It would result in holes, which you could fill, but the information on the pieces would not be interrupted AND you'd print out fewer pages (some patterns are HUGE paper sinks for this). ???
4/23/13 3:32 PM
sylpeak said...
I love digital patterns! I use a paper cutter to cut off the excess on 2 sides and then use paper glue to make long lasting patterns. I also have the option of usually having several prints to make different sizes if needed. The cutting and pasting become quite a zen experience once I get started. It helps that I use the printer at work and don't have to pay for the paper....
4/23/13 1:07 PM
orycia said...
I also downloaded from Lekala, personal sizing that I really like. I find the taping like a puzzle, do not mind it all. Use legal size paper, no big deal. I really the instant gratification thing. Have not tried anyone else's patterns.
4/23/13 1:01 PM
orycia said...
I also downloaded from Lekala, personal sizing that I really like. I find the taping like a puzzle, do not mind it all. Use legal size paper, no big deal. I really the instant gratification thing. Have not tried anyone else's patterns.
4/23/13 1:00 PM
KateS said...
I never really got into PDF patterns until I began testing patterns for a few independent pattern makers recently, now I definitely WOULD buy a digital pattern if I liked the design ( in fact I did, April Rhodes " Staple dress"). Living in australia means that paper patterns can be quite $$, even the cheap " See & Sew" ones etc aimed at the budget end of the market are still about $5, actually getting any paper pattern on sale for $5 (new) is considered good here! PDF patterns which are well priced more feature highly on my buying list as 1.) they are available ( usually) instantaneously, whatever time of day/ night with no drive to the store with screaming kids in tow 2.) I can reprint them again if I stuff up sizing/ want to make a different view, even though sticking together the pages is tedious I don't think it's much worse than tracing out a pattern and you have much sturdier pattern pieces than if you cut out the tissue paper many printed patterns are on 3.) a lot of independent patterns have excellent step by step instructions, some are like mini sewing courses IMHO, so I don't mind paying the same as- or more than- a paper pattern if I am getting all that extra info! Also some pattern alerts are offering online help and Flickr albums for inspiration, just more added value in my eyes!
4/23/13 10:35 AM

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