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Tips & Techniques > Tracing Patterns

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Posted by: Nichole Adams

About Nichole Adams
Member since: 1/25/03
Reviews: 2 (tips: 2)
Skill level:Beginner
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Posted on: 12/12/03 1:40 PM
Review Rating: Helpful by 2 people   Very Helpful by 9 people   
I never cut out my multisized patterns, I always trace them. I was with a group at a sewing weekend and showed them my idea of how to trace out patterns and they fell in LOVE with it. You can use whatever paper for tracing you want: exam paper, left over rolls of unprinted paper from newspaper runs, or I go to the Dollar Tree and get the rolls of brown package paper for $1 a roll. (I was using old newspapers at 1st, but the ink makes your hands black and the darts etc. are too hard to read with all the type.)
Take your pattern and put it on TOP of your paper and hold it down with weights or pin in place. Next take a Sharpie permanent marker and trace out line for line, dot for dot, and dart for dart what the printed pattern has on it. The Sharpie will bleed through onto your paper, so you will have a perfect pattern. I always include what pattern brand, size, etc information on to it also. This is a really great tip when you are making kids clothes in different sizes. :)

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chinalina said... (7/21/11 10:58 AM) Reply
How Perfect is this...I have been looking for a way to preserve my patterns and this seems best fit. I have just pulled out my Sharpie Permanent Marker and Im getting ready to put this to the test. Thanks!
Rab said... (1/15/04 0:13 AM) Reply
Hello. We also use many multi-sized patterns. When we buy a new pattern, we iron it, then tape it to the cutting table, using masking tape. We then use a thin plastic sheeting to trace each size. Each plastic pattern piece is labelled with pattern number, name, company, size and piece number. The original pattern is then stored in a filing system.
Mary Stiefer said... (1/3/04 12:12 PM) Reply
I also trace multi-sized patterns. However, I use something I found at the fabric store as my tracing material. I don't know what it is called; however, it is meant for tracing. It is see-thru and usually has 1" grid marks (either squares or dots). It's not very expensive and, let me tell you, this stuff will last forever. You don't have to worry about retracing the same pattern ever again.
julienna said... (12/14/03 10:43 AM) Reply
:) Yes, I totally agree with you. Your way does have a lot of advantages. It's just that maybe I am too afraid to leave any markings on my pattern. As a result I have to join two pieces of tracing paper together with tape and yes, I agree that I do have to make some effort to try to see through some of markings. ;) I'm a beginner at this, that is why the reluctance to even leave markings on my patterns heheheh. Hopefully I'll get to try your way.... it IS much easier. Thanks :)
Nichole Adams said... (12/13/03 2:18 PM) Reply
My way does leave permanent marks on the pattern, but if you are using a new Sharpie pen the line will be thin enough that you can still tell where the other lines are for the different sizes. I believe most of the time the only lines that will cross into other sizes are the armpits, necks, and crotch areas and you can figure out where to connect the lines on those. I used this method when my mother-in-law and I made Color Guard uniforms for the band last year, and we had so many different sized girls to make outfits for. For me it's alot quicker to just write on the top of the pattern than for me to try to see through the paper. Also I can use a stiffer paper like the brown wrap paper which I really like alot and it's long enough and wide enough for most pattern pieces to fit on it without having to tape so many pieces together. It's 30" wide by 4.6 yds long for $1 at Dollar Tree, so it's really cheap for me. :)
julienna said... (12/13/03 9:20 AM) Reply
Hi, this is a good review although i wonder won't tracing on the original pattern spoil the paper since markings will be left behind. I was afraid to do that because I might need to trace out different sizes at another time. So what I did was to purchase what I called tracing paper. I put the tracing paper on top of my pattern and just trace.
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