I’ve been having a bit of a sort out and tidy up in my sewing room this afternoon, I decided to tackle my pattern shelves. All my patterns are on a billy book case, I have plans to make fabric boxes, so I can have one for skirt patterns, one for shirts…you get the drift! As a short term measure I thought it might help if I put them into some spare baskets that were cluttering up the landing.
I decided to have one basket for independent pattern designers, another for popular patterns and one for the rest.
I realised just how many patterns on the shelves were not actually for me, lots of children’s patterns and ballgown patterns! The kids ones were mainly ones I’d sewn for my own family, with a few bridesmaid dresses made along the way. I don’t want to throw them away as one day I might have little people to sew for again! The ballgowns are mainly from the 1980’s when I was a student nurse in London, we had a hospital ball every year and no money, so I used to get the job of making every one a ballgown! When I came back to Yorkshire, I joined Rotaract where we regularly had black tie dinners, well you needed at least one new one a year! I made a few wedding dresses along the way (only two of them were mine!!) So I’ve ended up with a big pile of evening wear patterns. I’ve put them all in the box with the kids patterns in the box room. Some of them I’m keeping for sentimental reasons…seems a bit daft getting sentimental over a pattern, but this was my first ballgown pattern!
My ‘shame’ is realising just how many patterns have never actually been used!!! I’ve fallen for patterns but not yet got round to making them up. The worst culprits seem to be the independent patterns! Indie month on My Monthly Stitch has a lot to answer for, they would showcase a designer, I’d click over to the website and before I knew what was happening I’d bought another pattern or two!! I’ve just counted up and I’ve fifteen indie patterns waiting to be used!! Yet others, like the Fumeterre skirt and the Gabriola skirt I’ve made several times!
I think I really need to make a concerted effort to try all these patterns! I’ve probably just as many unused patterns from the big four! It’s not like I haven’t got them fabric to make alot of them up! Please tell me it’s not just me 🙂
With a bit more shelf space available, I’ve been able to put my project boxes on the shelves. I’ve a box for the fabric for each of my quilt-a-longs, and one for the finished blocks of the Spendid Sampler Quilt. I do like things to be organised, I’m just not very good at keeping them that way!
No shame at all, perfectly normal hoarding, I mean behaviour! Your comment about only 2 of the wedding dresses being yours made me chuckle! Mine are organised upstairs but all my new additions from the last 12 months are in and amongst everything else in my sewing bureau downstairs. I wish I could part with some of mine but I can’t. I think the Astor blouse should be top of your to do list, I bet it’s something you’d wear a lot. Good luck! 😃
I love the way your shelves look now! I went through the same ‘crisis’ this week with wanting to clear my cutting table to cut and work on quilt designs; I had cluttered it with components of several current projects! I could not find any of the pretty boxes, so I got several double shoebox sized clear plastic bins with tops — I think the label said that they were to hold 16 quarts. Now my projects are in the bins, and I have my beloved work table back! What a relief!
By no means are you alone, Margaret! My cutting table sounds just like Catskillquilter (as in upstate NY?), and I do the same thing with old vs new patterns that Ali mentions. Do think you’re wise to keep the children’s patterns, tho. They’ll come in handy!
No, it’s not just you… I use magazine files to hold my patterns, with the type written on the spine. The problem comes when you’ve got a few of those multiple patterns where there’s pants, skirt, dress and coat patterns all in the same envelope! And I’m with you on the nice project boxes helping to keep things tidy. I have the boxes – trouble is, they’re currently in a teetering stack on the floor!
I hear you! No, you’re not alone! I don’t have patterns dating way back as I didn’t sew when younger (otherwise my problem would be even bigger!) I try to keep the patterns organised but there are a lot I won’t ever use – so why can’t I get rid of them? It’s easier to get rid of the free magazine patterns but some might be suitable for my daughters to sew. (or for them) . Los of wrong sizes. I think I need to bite the bullet! There’s quite a bit of money in them but the space is more valuable, perhaps.
Isn’t finding forgotten patterns a bit like buying new ones? I don’t make clpthes but i’ve got loads of unused sewing patterns and books! I really need to have a sort out and tidy up