Friday, March 19, 2010

Patterns to give away!

This giveaway is now closed.  Thanks to all who played along!

My patterns were overflowing the 3 drawer file cabinet in which they were stored, so I got a new one, which led me to contemplate my organizational methods (or lack thereof!).
The top set of drawers is the original - note the duct tape to keep out wee hands.  Within size constraints (why does Vogue and Jalie have to use giant envelopes??), my patterns are organized so that I can choose them based on the fabric I am using, since that is generally how I plan my sewing.  The patterns are divided first into broad categories (Mens, Misses, Childrens, Unisex, Sleepwear and Maternity), then within the Misses and Mens category into subcategories.  Menswear is divided into activewear, pants and shirts and misses is dived into knits and wovens, and within those subcategories into tops, pants, skirts, dresses, jackets and wardrobes.  Children's is divided up just by size.  Other than that they are just sort of thrown in within each subcategory, so if I'm looking for a specific pattern, I just have to rifle through the entire category.  And this doesn't include the large envelope patterns or the magazines, which are in their own areas.  This is beginning to get cumbersome as I continue to acquire patterns, which I will!  Despite my recent forays into patternless sewing, I love patterns.  Aside from the fact that I'm just not as creative as a fashion designer, I'm just to lazy to draft something from scratch every time, and I like variety.

Of course, as I rearranged all my patterns, I found a few that I knew I wasn't going to need, for one reason or another.  Many are from the days before I knew how to do an FBA and was still basing my size on my full bust, which actually put me in a larger size category and a few I have many of the same style and know I won't sew them all.  So, up for grabs are two sets of patterns, one in each size grouping.
In the 8-16 size group is Simplicity 2590, a peasant style dress (easily converted to a top just be leaving off the skirt!) and Butterick 5191 which is a wardrobe with a sleeveless wrap top, kimono sleeve shrug, full legged pants and straight skirt.
In the 12/14 to 20 size group is McCall's 5936, a cute lined jacket with peplum, McCall's 5522 an empire waist, princess seamed top with tons of sleeve and ruffle variations and Butterick 4686, a full skirt with yoke that includes a pleated and unpleated version.

So to enter the giveaway tell me, how do you organize your patterns?  Do you have a method that works for you?  Be sure to let me know which pattern size range you'd like (both is OK, too!) and contact information if your comment doesn't link to a profile or blog.  I'll close the giveaway on Monday the 22nd  at 6AM Central Time and announce the winner later that day!  Sewing buddies from all over the globe are welcome to enter - I'll ship to you.

19 comments:

  1. Until recently I hadn't ventured away from childrens sewing more than once or twice, so my patterns aren't quite coming out of my ears yet. For now I keep them in 3-ring binders, each pattern is in a plastic sheet protector so I can flip through and see them. Pretty convenient so far, and I'm able to store them on a shelf to avoid taking drawer space away from fabric!
    The 8-16 size range will work for me, and I'm loving that halter variation of the peasant dress!

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  2. I am so OCD with my patterns! I have them in plastic baskets standing up so that I can easily flip through them. Each basket holds a different type (skirts and tops in one, dresses in another etc). Then within the baskets they are organized by company. I used to make a copy of the front and back of each pattern and put the copy in a binder so that I could take the binder to the fabric store (Mary Jos in Gastonia, NC!!) but stopped doing that about 2 years ago.

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  3. I'm taking myself out of the pattern giveaway (because girl, I have WAY more patterns than you), but I'll tell you my organization system anyway.

    1) Bankers boxes- cardboard

    2) Manilla file folders

    3) Each pattern envelope is photocopied front and back onto a letter-sized sheet (I do color because I have access to a color copier but you could do black/white). I also photocopy every line drawing sheet from my pattern magazines (like BWOF or Ottobre) as I get them.

    4) Pattern envelope, instructions, tissue all go into a labeled file folder in the bankers boxes, which are also labaeled by pattern number range (i.e 100's - 4000's, 5000's - 9000's, Independents with No Numbers, BWOF, etc.). I also put in all mt traced and altered tissue (I never cut up original patterns, I retrace everything) and any notes (which I almost never remember to make other than on the traced tissue)

    5) the photocopied envelope sheets go into a 3-ring binder and everything is organized strictly by pattern number or source (i.e. BWOF).

    I have separate boxes and binders for women's and children's patterns (I don't have many other types of patterns so those go at the back of the women's binder)

    This is a lot of work if you're doing all the patterns you already own, but once that's complete it's very easy to add in new patterns as you acquire them. The big advantage is having a binder with every single pattern you own in it, which you can sit down with (while watching TV, for instance) and plan out your next move.

    Maybe I should do a blog post about this with pictures. Er. Or maybe not. Very boring?

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  4. Mine stand in several plastic boxes - sorted by type, ie, coats together, etc. I don't have them in a database because I so enjoy browsing through them when I muse on making something new... like that blue/brown wool dress I'm planning... So, if you pull my name from the random draw, I'm putting myself down for the 8-12 size range (the frock & blouse).

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  5. I do not want to be in your giveaway (not my sizes...), but I wanted to comment on how organized everyone is!!! My patterns are just on a shelf standing on end so I can rifle through them (note: absolutely no order to them except for size of envelope). Then the Ottobre and BWOF magazines are scattered throughout my house (in my sewing room, in the magazine stack by the t.v., by my bedsize, in my bathrooms, and also some stuck away on the shelf with the others). How is that for unorganized??? :)

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  6. Organized? Ha. Ha. I do have my patterns in a filing cabinet. And another box. They are in no particular order. Oh yes, and there are the ones that are inside my sewing table. And some in my fabric stash sitting on top of fabric that will be used for that project. I just know that I love looking at them and dreaming about making them. :-) I think that I could do both sizes. :-)

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  7. I just have boxes on a shelving unit - a box of kids patterns, a box of home dec/misc and my women's patterns are by type - tops, bottoms, jackets. I put all my pattern envelopes and pieces into plastic page protectors (the kind you insert into a binder) and therefore eliminating the need to jam them back into the envelope. Nothing fancy, but it works.

    I like the 12-20 size group - that blouse is super cute!

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  8. i have those same plastic thing-ys! and i have 5 drawers full of patterns--yikes! i need to organize my patterns better too.

    i'd love the 2nd set of patterns (being a larger woman)

    thanks for the giveaway!

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  9. To be honest they are just all shoved in the sideboard out of sight, the trouble is then I have to get them all out each time I'm looking for something - at least I'm alot more ogranised with my fabrics!

    Any please :)

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  10. My Ottobre and European children patterns are in magazine box files. The traced patterns are in C5 envelopes - in no particular order and the ones I'm actually using are littering the window-sill of the dining room. Slopers are also in envelopes in the dining room. My adult patterns are in shoe holders in the spare room wardrobe. Oddly enough, I can't always find what I'm looking for... Maybe it's time I did some organisation... i love the wrap/kimono & peasant dress. Lovely

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  11. All I have to say is oh, dear! If you have too many patterns, I worry for myself. I organize my patterns similarly though, in the plastic drawers. Each drawer is then sorted by type (top, dress, pants, skirt, children's, men's, home decor) I also have one for costumes (love those!) sorted by style and type. Since the Vogues won't fit into these drawers, they have there own box. BWOF are just on a shelf for now, but I have copied all the line drawings into a folder for easy flipping. Most of my patterns have also been scanned into the computer and sorted so I can easily flip through them to find what I have.

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  12. I have a big dresser that I use for patttern storage. I organize by drawers...baby and childrens pattern in one, tops, dresses, sportswear, etc. in another. I could fit in either set of patterns. Thanks!

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  13. Right now my patterns are in two places. Most are in a priority mail box I got from Simplicity when I ordered some patterns direct. A couple of them are placed in a pile on top of the fabric I'm going to use with the notions. I feel weird entering a giveaway from a friend, but why not. I'm a BIG girl so I would want the plus sized (all three are so cute!).

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  14. I'm not interested in the give away. I don't need more patterns! I keep my patterns in a Butterick sewing cabinet that I bought at a JoAnns that was going out of business. I organized my patterns by maker with a few exceptions. I don't have many Vogue or New Look patterns so they go in the same drawer with other miscellaneous makes. After that, Butterick, McCalls and Simplicity have a drawer all to themselves. I've pretty good at remembering what particuler pattern I'm looking for and they only time I have a problem is when I've misfiled them.

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  15. Yes please, put me in the draw for the second set of patterns! Although if I win you may regret the postage.

    At the moment my patterns are each sealed into a plastic bag, and put into plastic boxes which fit under the spare bed. I have a Burda box with the magazines, a Burda box with traced patterns, and an "others" box which is everything else. I regularly cull patterns which I either donate to charity of take to a sewing meet as part of a swap. In that way, I never get too many patterns - I do the same with fabric, I keep it moving.

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  16. Hello, I would like to be entered in the size 12/14 pattern drawing. I have made my own pattern storage by using cardboard boxes narrow enough to hold the patterns without them turning sideways, etc. I cover the boxes in surplus remnants and mark boxes accordingly as the pattern companies do (i.e. "dresses", "sportswear", "lingerie", "hats", etc). The convenient thing about this system is: 1) The boxes fit neatly on shelves; 2) it's easy to identify which box I'm looking for as each box is diffently covered, and; 3) if a box wears out it is easily replaced. The last part of the equasion is that my sewing area is colorful and it a constant reminder of past garments made and trips I took where I purchased the fabric. Hope this helps!

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  17. Since I never sew for myself don't enter me in the giveaway. I bought a whole bunch of those jacket files. I cut the pattern envelope and glued the front and back to the outside of the envelope. Across the top I wrote basically what the pattern was for and the sizes. Then I put them in a cabinet that my husband's grandfather built for his grandmother when they first got married. Believe it or not, it is such a perfect size, it's as if it was built for these file folders. I have them arranged mostly by size. The bottom shelf has boy patterns and costume patterns. It works well, but I need to get more folders and finish the job. I also need another cabinet because i can't fit many more in this one.

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  18. You mean they're supposed to be organized?! I only have a handful of patterns stashed around the house. Either size group works.

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  19. I'm past the giveaway, but I'm currently using a large plastic file cabinet to store patterns. So far, so good, but it's almost full. And really, I'm still planning on adding new ones, so this should be interesting in the next few months. :/

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