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Patterns To Trace

16 January 2009, 11:18

Recently I’ve been doing more batch tracing rather than tracing one pattern, sewing it up, then tracing the next. I find my sewing bottleneck is often in the tracing step (even though it doesn’t take much time), so by doing a bunch at once I can always have something on the go to work on in the mornings and evenings.

I’ve been mentally matching up my patterns to fabrics in my stash and tracing an awful lot the last few nights. Here’s what I’ve got coming up in the next few weeks, though you can see my plans have had to change somewhat to focus more on comfortable knits…

One pattern I really must single out is KwikSew 3300. I’ve only ever sewn one other Kwik Sew pattern before and was not impressed with the fit whatsoever and really didn’t see myself sewing any more of their patterns, especially since I find their designs so unappealing overall. But they do seem to make the most extensive range of lingerie patterns so I bought this one reluctantly and not expecting terribly much.

So I was pleasantly surprised to find that the pattern sheet for this – with a huge array of sizes and tiny, fiddly pattern pieces – was an absolute joy! They’ve clearly sectioned off each band size into its own compartment on the sheet, with the cup sizes as the different coloured lines therein.

The sheet itself is also a manageable size – more like a BWOF sheet (after it’s been cut down the middle) than a Vogue or Simplicity tissue monstrosity. All in all, they’ve turned what could’ve been a really confusing process into a lesson in simplicity. Design-wise, I applaud them, and I hope the construction process is just as good!

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  1. That fur jacket pattern is gorgeous.

    I’ve had a good experience with Kwik Sew in the past, although I can’t for the life of me remember what the pattern was – either way, perhaps you just got unlucky first time round?

    Kerry    Jan 16, 02:12 PM    #
  2. Hey, I just bought 2 bra patterns last month with hopes of making my first bra soon too. I bought a Kwik Sew (2489, a full band bra) and an Elan pattern (partial band). I have Anne St Clair’s book about bra making and I’ve been reading all of Sigrid’s tutorials. I look forward to seeing how yours turns out!

    Christina    Jan 16, 02:54 PM    #
  3. I usually batch trace too. There is only a few hours of daylight in AK in the winter so I try to trace off everything at one time.

    I’m excited to see your bra. I’ve been pondering making one myself using that same pattern. I find that KwikSew is made for broader shouldered women. I usually make the XS and then pinch out a 1/2” through the middle. It should be very easy to fix for a bra-type of garment.

    Hope your feeling good! I hope your non-running isn’t getting you down.

    dawn    Jan 16, 03:25 PM    #
  4. Really? I like tracing, but once I’ve traced & altered I feel like I’ve already mentally worked out the problems and my interest in the pattern dims. Yup, I have many traced but unsewn patterns!

    — Katharine in Brussels    Jan 16, 04:36 PM    #
  5. The bra pattern sounds intriguing! Still thinking about you and your health issues, hope you’re keeping your energy up.

    — luckylibbet    Jan 16, 04:45 PM    #
  6. Choosing and tracing a pattern seems to be the step that I procrastinate over the most. I’ll be interested to see how the bra making goes.

    Frances    Jan 16, 07:59 PM    #
  7. I try to trace and alter several patterns at once too. It seems more efficient to be able to do several patterns, cut them and then just be able to keep sewing along.

    — Nancy K    Jan 16, 10:01 PM    #
  8. ooh! I too want to try bra making so will watch avidly as I expect you will get round to it before me! x

    juliab    Jan 19, 09:32 AM    #
  9. Good idea to do batch tracing. I need to follow that more, so I can spend more time sewing continuously.

    2BSewing    Jan 21, 12:21 AM    #

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