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This archived content is from Mary Wilkins’ sewing and quilting message board “Sew What’s New,” which was retired in August 2007. It is being provided by “Sew What’s Up,” which serves as the new home for many members of “Sew What’s New.”
From: anamariacries
Date: 08-08-2006, 10:35 AM (1 of 13)
Why are patterns so hard to read I swear you almost need a degree to read them. everything was fine the I had to stich interfacing to arm and neck of the dress I go stuck for and hour trying to sew this one little peice about and inch long the machine kept jammin up. After I finally got that done I was looking at a similar dress (store bought) thay my daughter has and the seams don't look the same now I am wishin I double the fabric on the inside it would have looked better that what I have now.

and what worse is I can't rip the seam and start over cause the fabric is so thin it tears when I do it.

This is disaster!!!!!!!!!!!!!
User: anamariacries
Member since: 08-01-2006
Total posts: 11
From: weezyrider
Date: 08-08-2006, 01:43 PM (2 of 13)
My sympathies! Been there, done that. Couple of times the pattern has been wrong - but I'm starting to wonder if the pattern companies are turning over instructions to the same tech writers that do computers and cars! (in fairness, some of those techs are NOT native English speakers.)

Weezy :wink:
User: weezyrider
Member since: 08-19-2003
Total posts: 218
From: stephi
Date: 08-08-2006, 02:44 PM (3 of 13)
I feel you on the "i should have doubled the fabric" Pain. I have made lots of little girls dresses and I have often stood back and said I should have done a ruffle or added a built in slip. Infact most of the time I think of something that would have been better after I have finished, LOL!! Just keep trucking it will work out in the end. :wink:

"No body knows what it is that I do until I dont do it"

"if you do what you have always done you will get what you have always gotten"
User: stephi
Member since: 03-17-2006
Total posts: 361
From: bridesmom
Date: 08-08-2006, 09:59 PM (4 of 13)
My sympathies too. I've had those outfits that I've fought my way through, some have ended up in the garbage though. Sometimes you just need to take a breather, and go back later. Good luck!!
Tickled pink with my Innovis 4000D
User: bridesmom
Member since: 01-21-2004
Total posts: 2026
From: plrlegal
Date: 08-09-2006, 03:34 PM (5 of 13)
The instructions for some of the patterns I've bought recently for Simplicity and Butterick remind me of trying to tell an online computer support technician in India that speaks very, very little English and understands less what is wrong with my computer then try to understand what he/she is reading back to you from a manual that is written in Hindu or whatever. I've scratched my head several times lately and then thrown the instructions on the floor and stomped out of my sewing room muttering to myself.

User: plrlegal
Member since: 05-19-2001
Total posts: 318
From: DorothyL
Date: 08-09-2006, 04:19 PM (6 of 13)
Heck, Patsy, I do that all the time.
User: DorothyL
Member since: 12-09-2002
Total posts: 3883
From: bridesmom
Date: 08-14-2006, 12:38 AM (7 of 13)
I just got a free pattern from Simplicity for some wrap uniform tops, unisex. Well crapola, I made the one (or should I say attempted to make) for my size and I could have put two of me in it, and it was the bizarrest wrap I have ever seen, plus the V was so deep in the front that I'd have to wear a tshirt or fall out all over the place, and it was so big in the chest and tight in the butt. The directions were fairly easy, but the whole plan was so bizarre. Then I tried the V neck version, and it was horrible. So I recut and resewed and came up with 2 tops that I am really not very happy with, I am only thankful that the fabric was really really cheap on sale. I bet these 2 tops will end up in the garbage after wearing them one or two times just because I am so unhappy with them.
Tickled pink with my Innovis 4000D
User: bridesmom
Member since: 01-21-2004
Total posts: 2026
From: Magot
Date: 08-14-2006, 03:14 AM (8 of 13)
That's just your temper Dorothy.
love and kisses, Jan
Cells a Speciality
DNA to order.
User: Magot
Member since: 12-22-2002
Total posts: 3626
From: weezyrider
Date: 08-14-2006, 10:37 AM (9 of 13)
I just finished a tunic for my daughter - Think it was McCall's. Everything fit well, it hung well, but the dratted neckline was TOO low. Had I known that, I could have adjusted before cutting, but that's a measurement they don't give. I can fix it by making a dickie.

Weezy :mad:
User: weezyrider
Member since: 08-19-2003
Total posts: 218
From: mozeyrn
Date: 08-14-2006, 09:26 PM (10 of 13)
The green outfit for my dd was a nightmare in the beginning! It was crooked and didn't fit her right - I almost threw it out a couple of times.
I ended up taking all the pieces apart and used directions from a different manufacturer to get the pants stitched right. I never fully understood the original directions that came with the outfit but remembered in the winter I had made pj's for her from another pattern manufacturer and they were a cinch. So I used those instructions instead and the pants fit her so much better that she actually wore them out in public! :bg:
- Maureen.
Learning something new with every stitch!!
Kenmore 16231000
User: mozeyrn
Member since: 11-29-2005
Total posts: 349
From: mom2brook&bree
Date: 08-14-2006, 11:18 PM (11 of 13)
The only pattern I seem to be half way capable of understanding is the Martha Pullen A-line dress pattern. The problem with that is the pattern I have only goes to a size 6, while my girls are now sizes 8 and 10. lol I'm not experienced enough to try to adjust it any. That didn't stop me from buying the ones I was going to do "one day" know, the ones my girls have outgrown already. lol At least I did make a few of the A-line's for them.
User: mom2brook&bree
Member since: 08-11-2006
Total posts: 3
From: MaryW
Date: 08-16-2006, 06:04 AM (12 of 13)
I was told that the pattern companies write their sewing instructions on the computer. They do not type out each word. They will take a phrase such as "with right sides together, pin sleeve to armhole edge" when really you will have to ease some of that fabric.

They have a huge sewing glossary of terms and phrases they use when writing up the directions for garments. The wording may not fit the situation exactly and that's where some of our confusion and mistakes happen.

My experience has always been that you have to reinvent the directions, makes notes and keep them with your pattern for next time, if there is one. :nervous:
owner/editor of Sew Whats New
User: MaryW
Member since: 06-23-2005
Total posts: 2542
From: mommydionne
Date: 08-24-2006, 08:52 PM (13 of 13)
I'm with you there Mary, I've almost given up on instructions, they are more confusing than not.

Sandra Betzina's Power Sewing gives basic instructions for most garments (pants, blouse etc) It's a tad pricey so I would check it out at the library first to see if it is what you need, I like Ottobre and Burda instructions in general, I find most companies overcomplicate things.
User: mommydionne
Member since: 01-08-2004
Total posts: 838
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