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cutting patterns??
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sandybees
sandybees
Member since 7/21/05
Posts: 5
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Date: 7/21/05 2:42 PM

I have made a few things over the years but not much .... I would like to start making some dresses for my baby girl... and just need a few pointers... I got a roitary cutting wheel and cutting mat... my question is how do you cut the pattern so that you don't ruin it for the other sizes.... for instance I bought a pattern BY NEW LOOK and it has sizes 1/2, 1, 2, 3, 4 and right now I am making the 1/2 size but I want to be able to make the other sizes down the road???

my other question right now is do I HAVE to wash the fabric before sewing? I am guessing it might shrink a bit after washing is that the only reason to wash before hand?

thanks
jamie

Gigi Louis
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Gigi Louis
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Member since 4/4/02
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Date: 7/21/05 3:08 PM

Yes, you should always prewash your fabric. That way it will be preshrunk. Additionally, I always like to see how the fabric reacts to washing. Sometimes you'll get a piece that looks horrible afterward. I'd rather find that out before spending time on it.

Many people trace off the size pattern that they need to preserve the other sizes. You can use tracing fabric like Tru-Grid, Do-Sew or Swedish Tracing Paper or use any of many different types of papers on the market. I use physicians' examining table paper (the smooth kind). If you search the boards I think there was a thread about this very subject awhile back.

Welcome back to sewing!

Mirza
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Mirza
Advanced Beginner
Louisiana USA
Member since 10/6/04
Posts: 553
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Date: 7/21/05 3:10 PM

In order to save your pattern to use other sizes later, you will need to trace it. I buy "pattern ease" from Joann's and also use some other similar stuff. It is usually located around the bolts of interfacing. You can also use those inexpensive sew in interfacing packages they sell at Joann's. Some people use other things, like newsprint (I don't like this because it is not easy to see thru), tracing paper, exam table paper, etc. Do a search in the notions board for "tracing paper" to get more info on this.

I trace by gently taping the pattern piece to a table, laying the tracing material over it. Sometimes I put weights on this or tape it down also. I use a regular ink pen to trace the size I will be sewing.

Regarding, washing your fabric. Yes, you should wash your fabric in order to preshrink it.

HTH!

Mirza

PVA
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PVA
Intermediate
Oregon USA
Member since 3/28/04
Posts: 1666
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Date: 7/21/05 5:57 PM

There are other reasons for washing fabrics before cutting -- all the the textile producers are using all kinds of chemicals. Even the natural fibers like cotton & wool are loaded with more chemicals than you would ever want to know about. I even pre-wash synthetic knits that I know aren't going to shrink. And yes, I do use soaps/detergents & cleansing agents.

As for cutting the original pattern, I rarely do that. I almost always trace the pattern & save the original. They just plain cost too much to use once & discard. If I'm making any size adjustments it helps to always have the original to go back to if the ajustment doesn't work out. Sounds like your baby girl is really pretty new if you're going to start with the 1/2 size. You'll definitely want to save that original! Baby girls are the most fun to sew for. They don't have opinions!

------
PVA (Pat)  "A girl can't have too many scissors!"
If I don't have time to do it right, when will I have time to do it over?

michellerene
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michellerene
Intermediate
Washington USA
Member since 6/11/05
Posts: 76
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Date: 7/21/05 8:15 PM

I would recommend running a zig zag or overcast stitch down the cut sides of your fabric before pre-washing as well-- keeps wovens from raveling & stretching out of shape in the wash! If you have a serger, use that. Have fun!

------
*Michelle*

Being perfectly well-dressed gives a feeling of tranquility that religion is powerless to bestow.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson, quoting a friend

sandybees
sandybees
Member since 7/21/05
Posts: 5
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Date: 7/22/05 3:46 PM

thanks so much everyone! I don't have a joanns... I have a walmart... I saw freezer paper a big roll... do you think this would work well to trace the pattern to?

once I trace the pattern to something else I could cut that one out to use, right? then if that gets worn out I could always go back to the original..

sorry to sound so dumb! I bought more fabric today and ribbon and plan to make the cute a-line dresses. My baby girl is almost 2 months... I made one little dress in the 1/2 size and I think she may be able to wear it in the fall or spring ... it reaLLY looks big compared to her RTW dresses... I am thinking it is like a 6-12months size.

Anyway, I am getting hooked! I made 2 quilts without much knowledge.. one for my baby girl and one twin size for DS...

I have done things like pillows and stuff but have always feared clothing... Last year I made my DS spiderman PJ's that turned out so cute! I guess I am gaining confidence!
thanks for the advice!
Jamie

californiagirl

californiagirl
Intermediate
California USA
Member since 5/19/04
Posts: 15
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Date: 7/22/05 7:20 PM

Baby sizing makes my head hurt. When they say "1" they mean
it theoretically fits the whole time the baby is 1 year old. (Hah! But
you know nobody's sizes are sane.) But when they're numbering
things in months, if they give you only one age, it's the END age,
not the beginning. So something meant to cover the same size
range as a size 1 would be labelled 24 months. So yes, a 1/2
should be 6-12 months. And 24 months is smaller than 2.

Yes, copy off the size you want to cut now, and cut the copy.

pittysmom

pittysmom
Beginner
Tennessee USA
Member since 7/21/04
Posts: 144
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Date: 7/22/05 8:07 PM

Here's a last resort idea, I have done this when I ran out of the other stuff.
If you don't have any other options, white tissue paper, (the gift wrapping kind at the dollar store) will work ok. You can reasonably see through it enough to trace the lines. It's not as durable as some of the other options, but it's pretty easy to use, and widely available anywhere.
You might have to tape sections together with bigger patterns, but probably not with tiny baby clothes.

If you have to tape, use only the scotch Transparent, not the shiny kind, and cover it of you have to (warm)iron over it.

If you later find you use a certain pattern over and over, you can always trace around it onto something stronger.

just make sure you get the plain white, for obvious reasons! The colored is just too distracting to trace with.

HTH,
Cheri

Mrs. Trouble
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Mrs. Trouble
Intermediate
Maryland USA
Member since 12/13/04
Posts: 507
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In reply to sandybees


Date: 7/22/05 10:47 PM

My tracing paper of choice is wax paper. It's cheap and transparent, easy to handle and holds up well. I trace all of my patterns onto wax paper using a Sharpie. I have three ring binders that I keep copies of the pattern enveloppe and an enveloppe with the traced pattern inside. I often make multiple garments out of one pattern and I've found that the wax paper holds up nicely.

As for Freezer Paper, I have found that, while it's sturdy, it's not very easy to see through.

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