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Tips & Techniques > Baby Steps 9 - Speed-read your pattern instructions

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Posted by: Helen near Sydney
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About Helen near Sydney starstarstar
NSW Australia
Member since: 10/21/05
Reviews written: 132
Sewing skills:Intermediate
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Posted on: 1/24/07 10:33 PM
Review Rating: Helpful by 2 people   Very Helpful by 6 people   
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Baby Steps 9 - Speed-read your pattern instructions.

I always intend to read the instructions from go to woe but somehow about half way through my eyes glaze over and hey presto, I’ve failed the first step already!

A better system, I find, is to speed-read the pattern and highlight just the main bits - eg. 'View A' & the list of all it’s pattern pieces; ‘View A’ wherever it's written in the instructions; and all the diagrams relating to View A get circled with the highlighter. Obviously this doesn’t keep the instructions in pristine condition so you have to be ok with that.

I also do a similar thing to the pattern pieces I alter, before I cut them out – eg. where I morph from a 16 at the bust to an 18 at the waist I highlight the first inch or so of the 16 seamline and the last inch or so of the 18 seam line; I highlight the number of times I need to cut a piece out and where the edge needs to be placed on the fold.

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Nancywin said...
Great tip - I usually don't read them until after I've cut out the pattern, and then there is usually a surprise that I could have avoided. Speed reading and highlighting ahead of time will help with this. Great tip
4/7/07 8:17 PM
Helen near Sydney said...
You are very welcome.
1/30/07 2:45 PM
SewTwin said...
Helen, I don't know why I don't see comments on this yet. I LUV this!..I have copied this. I will put it at the front of my Pattern Review Binder I consult before I cut out patterns. Mucho Gracias. I need to speed up my sewing, and this will help immensely!!
1/30/07 1:21 AM
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