SiriIISiri: Reading Patterns 101

pattern back pattern front

I was asked to be a guest blogger for another blog called WomenWithGifts. I was asked to blog about the thing I do best, SEWING!!! I have been having fun ever since. So as I have been sitting here brainstorming on what to blog about. I decided the best topic I should write about would be “how to read a pattern?”

I have had women stop me, inbox me and email me about reading the backs of pattern envelopes. So today we are gonna tackle this daunting task of interpreting all the jibberish on the back.

I am using pattern envelope from Simplicity #2365. The first thing you see on the back of the envelop is the style #/pattern # (2365). You will see the amount of pattern pieces included in the envelope. Next you will see the back views of the various styles for the pattern. On this particular pattern we have 4 views. The views are are the variants of styles for one shirt. Basically, when designing an item. A designer will take a common Style(in this case a tunic top) and come up with other styles based off of a foundation style.

You will see a brief description of the style. For example a description for this pattern is, Misses’ Tunic in Two Lengths with Front Variations.

The next thing you will see is a box that says “Fabrics”. In this box the pattern company list the fabrics that would be best used for this style. Depending on the style some fabrics would not be suitable.

The next box down is titled “Notions”. In this box you will find ALL the things needed to complete your project. If you need buttons, snaps, elastic, interfacing, bias tap or what ever else trim that is needed. It will be listed here according to each view.

Something else you will see Body Measurements. The first line you see will be bust measurements, waist, hip and back-neck to waist. From these measurements you will decide what size range you fall into. When I use commercial patterns I use the measurement of the biggest part of my body. I often suggest use their bust measurement to decide what size to use.

Next you will see pattern sizes and sizes in European

After you decide what size range you fall into, remember use your bust size to decide, you will see the different views. Labeled A, B, C, etc. In this case we have views A – D

Depending on what view you are planning to construct you. You can scan across to your size and it will tell you how many yards of material you will need to make your garment. Under each view you will see two numbers. 45″ and 60″ these are the two fabric widths, depending on the fabric width will determine the fabric yardage.

The very last thing you will see on the back of the envelope are the measurements for the finished garments for each view.

I hope I helped demystify the idea of reading the back of the pattern envelope.Β  Check out my other blogs as a guest bloggerΒ  here

Please leave me a comment and let me know what you think of this blog.. and as always KEEP SEWING!!!


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