Is there an official word for “fear of patterns”?

Jan
2012
09

posted by on Bags

4 comments

One of my New Year’s resolutions is “Use my sewing machine for something other than sewing squares and triangles together and quilting them with straight lines.” I not only want to experiment with free-motion quilting; I also want to learn to sew bags and clothes and other practical items.

I’ve always done things a bit backwards. You’d think I would have learned to sew a simple bag before I learned to sew an entire quilt, but alas.

The first project I wanted to tackle was a case for my Kindle. I only paid $99 for it, but I couldn’t find a cover I liked for less than $40. I knew I could make something that I liked for much less than that. All I really want is a padded, zippered pouch, which probably sounds super easy to seasoned seamstresses, but I’ve never worked with patterns or zippers or interfacing (unless batting counts as interfacing … does it?) I decided it would be best to use a pattern for my first project instead of trying to wing it.

My first hurdle was finding a pattern that I liked. There are a million on the Internet, but none that were exactly what I wanted. I took a look at the pattern selection at my local Joann Fabrics store, and I didn’t find anything there — not even a simple zippered pouch. What I did find was an adorable purse pattern (pictured at the top-right of this post), and I knew I could make it work as a Kindle case and for carrying other things, too. (You can get the pattern yourself here.)

Unfortunately, after opening up the pattern and looking at the thing, I realized that choosing a pattern was the easiest part. The thing is written in a totally different language. I suddenly had a flashback to the last time I resolved to sew a pattern, and I remembered why I gave up like a big quitter. Sigh.

This time I’m determined to suck it up and just do it, but I’m wondering if it would be better to start with a simpler tutorial for a zippered pouch. Maybe something like this with some firm interfacing for padding?

I did find this sort of useful guide to sewing with patterns, but I can’t help but feel intimidated and confused when I look at all the lines and instructions and try to figure out how everything is going to line up and where to sew and bah.

I’m really a smart person, I promise. Just bad at following visual instructions, I guess.

Do you have any tips or resources for a first time pattern sewer? It would be much appreciated.

 

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    • Karen
    • Karen

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