My sewing is really let down by my inability to measure and cut accurately. This could be because I don’t enjoy it and am always in a rush to get on with the sewing. It’s never really bothered me, it just means I have to make a few alterations as I go along so that everything matches up. However, it occurred to me that it might save time in the long run if I did it properly in the first place!
Normally I hold the pattern in place with one hand and then cut with the other (you can probably see the flaw in this method) because it takes so long to draft my patterns I’m not overly keen to put pins in them, and I want to be able to re-use them.
So, I started to look for some pattern weights. I found some. They cost about £30 and looked like lumps of plastic. This would be such a waste of money for me. If they don’t look appealing, I won’t use them. At this point it still didn’t occur to me to make some, or even to use some pebbles/ stones/ crystals. But I Googled ‘pattern weights’ images and along with the boring commercial ones were some fabulous handmade ones, including some that someone had made by painting patterns on to pebbles with 3D puff paint. A really simple idea and so effective. Perhaps I should have done that, it would have saved me some time. But some of the fabric ones looked so pretty, I just had to make some. This was my first attempt:
I bought two large washers for each one and gathered a circular scrap of material around them. I had planned to put a largish covered button on top of each but then spotted these diamante ones which were left over from making my notice board and I do like sparkly things. I really like these pattern weights and they will get a lot of use.
Then I saw some pattern weights that looked like little pyramids and they seemed simple enough to make. I found the tutorial at Tea Rose Home . I cut out a triangle of scrap fabric and sewed the sides together so that the tips met at the top and stuffed them with lentils (I would have used rice but I had some lentils that were nearing their sell by date and there was more chance of us eating the rice.) I’m quite pleased with how they’ve turned out as well. They could easily be sized up to make a pin cushion or even a door stop.
Because I never know when to stop I made two owls as well from slightly different patterns. They were basically a small triangle attached to a larger triangle, folded over at the top for a beak, stuffed with lentils and a covered coin underneath to help them stand up. The pink gingham one was made from two triangles of the same height whereas the purple and green one had a shorter triangle for his tummy. This one was slightly trickier to sew but I think the end result is better. I found the tutorial for one at My DIY Chat and the other one at a site called Moonstitches.
I wonder if it’s my scissors that’s the real issue. It could be my scissors, they’re almost definitely not helping the situation. I have just realized that they are very old, possibly thirty years plus and they’ve never been sharpened. That could have to be addressed at some point, but for now at least my pattern pieces should stay put.