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Sewing Blog

How to track your sewing projects and alterations + a bujo layout and pdf template

Sewing planner bullet journal page template

Have you eve made changes to your sewing pattern, but forgot exactly what you did? *Raises hand*...I often put away a project for weeks, sometimes months and forget whether or not I've added those 2 extra centimeters to the sleeve, or I want to remake a wardrobe staple I made a year ago and can't find the edits I've made.

It's annoying because I could get out a measuring tape and figure most things out, but some edits are quite subtle and hard to backtrack from a garment that's been worn and washed.

So I decided to be more diligent and track my pattern edits in a pattern card/project planner / sewing journal mash-up. Something I used to do when I still designed and produced small collections. We would use a system to track pattern alterations, versions, construction order, material cost, production time and all the materials needed for the project.

I currently don't need to track each and every detail, but I do want to keep my sewing projects organized. My main wish was to be able to set a project aside for a while and confidently pick up where I left off.

There are so many details you could track, but in the end, only trial and error will lead you to a system that works for you.

Here are some of the possible sections you could add to your project planner.

  • Body measurements + the date you took those measurements because your sizes probably will fluctuate over time.
  • Hacks and alterations. How much length did you add to the sleeve? or how much you pinched out of the back panel?
  • Finished garment measurements and ease. Figure out how much ease the pattern has and compare it to garments you already own and love.
  • The size or sizes you've traced.
  • How much fabric you need.
  • The color number of the thread you used.
  • Name and designer of the sewing pattern.
  • The pattern #hashtag for sharing on Instagram.
  • The order of construction so you don't have to check the instruction booklet.
  • Future alterations.
  • Notions & sewing machine needles.
  • Material costs.
  • Stitch length or other sewing machine settings.
  • The date you started or when you finished.
  •  A sketch of the garment or details.
  • A link or website name where you found that super helpful tutorial you used.

I decided to create a sewing planner template that includes a few set categories and room for notes and details that fall outside these sections.

P a t t e r n  d e t a i l s
- this is where I can track the basics

name:
designer:
date:
pattern O printed O taped O traced O cut
fabric O washed O cut

f a b r i c / n o t i o n s / n o t e s
- where I can write down everything I need to actually sew the pattern

b o d y m e a s u r e m e n t s + d a t e
- to keep an eye on if my size changes since I last made the pattern

f i n i s h e d  g a r m e n t  m e a s u r e m e n t s
- to see how much ease the pattern has

s i z e  t r a c e d
- If I fall between sizes I can track which sizes I've traced

 
bullet journal layout for sewing, project planner

Sewing project planner printable vs a notebook or Bullet journal

You can simply write everything on a sheet of paper and add whatever you need, or write everything down in a notebook or bullet journal, but I couldn't resist the opportunity to create a printable for a streamlined look and ease of use.

I've been a bullet journal user for about 4 years now and I found my style to be super basic, I don't use colors or markers, just my trusted Lamy safari fountain pen. The bullet journal layout was a nice experiment for inspiration. I kept the layout very minimalist and I managed to keep it all on one page. the empty page could function as a way to jot down additional notes or a place to add inspiration for the project.

In the end, I will mainly use the printed template and only use the bullet journal for plans that require more planning and research like when I'm starting from scratch and making the actual pattern.

If you want to try the printable for yourself, it's available as a free download to newsletter subscribers and customers in the resource library.

Sewing planner page template free pdf download

How I use my sewing project planner for the Garçonne shirt

I used the sewing project planner template I created when I decided to hack my Garçonne shirt. I've already made two shirts with a regular button band, but I wanted to make another one with a partial placket and sleeve plackets and turn it into a popover shirt.

I created the pattern pieces and wrote down how long I wanted the front placket to be, after holding it in front of my chest and adjusting the length.

Another thing I added, was a sketch to remind me how the sleeve plackets should be attached to the sleeve since I have messed this up in the past. I was glad I had the simple sketch handy when sewing, it definitely sped up my process. 

All in all, it was a success and I will keep using it (and probably fine-tuning) in the future!

Now I would love to hear from you! Do you have a system in place to track your sewing projects and alterations? I would love to hear your tips and ideas.


Sewing planner pdf template, tracking alterations

Sign up and download the free sewing planner page template

Sign to the newsletter here to access the free printable sewing project planner or log into your customer account, you'll find the PDF template in the sewing resource library as a free download.

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Tie Dress: Wrap Dress Hack

Tie dress PDF sewing pattern hack and alterations

When I originally designed the Tie Dress, it was part of my small ready to wear collection and it was made in a small size range in my studio in Rotterdam. I have no idea how many we made and sold, but I still had this indigo/purple/Yves Klein blue version lying around, there is a small fault in the fabric, right on the boob but not that visible at all...maybe that's why it never got sold? Anyway, I love the colour (which is nearly impossible to photograph well) but the size was too big for me. And since it's #AlterItAugust I though I join in and alter this blue beauty from the archive.

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Tsuno Tie Bag - Tester round up

Tsuno tie bag - bento bag - project bag sewing pattern - easye to sew bag - azuma bukuro
Marilyn @create.anew

I'm so thankful of all these fabulous testers! They dedicated their time and fabric to give great feedback so I could finetune the pattern and get it as perfect as possible. They did a great job and it's inspiring to see the bag in so many different fabrics and colours.

 

During the testing I made changes to the instructions and it was clear that a video tutorial would be a great addition to the pattern. I've recently uploaded the video tutorial so you can sew along with your Tsuno Tie Bag.

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5 steps to pick the right sewing pattern size + get a better fit. Even if you are a beginner!

how to pick the right size sewing pattern

Yay! You decided to start sewing. You bought a sewing machine, did a few practice projects and now you are ready to sew your own handmade wardrobe. You want to create your own handmade wardrobe because fast fashion turns you off, you can't find what you are looking for or you simply don't fit the standard RTW (ready-to-wear) sizes.

You pick your first pattern put your blood, sweat, and tears into that first garment, only to find out it's too baggy or too tight and you start second guessing the whole plan of sewing your own wardrobe.

Or

You never start because you lack confidence and question everything...Which pattern size should I choose? What should I do if I don’t fit into any of the listed sizes? What if I fall into different sizes? How do I take my measurements?

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What is ease in sewing. Wearing ease, design ease, negative ease explained

what is ease in sewing, design ease, wearing ease, negative ease explained

Ease / wearing ease / design ease / negative ease

What is ease and why should you care about it? Well...have you ever sewn a (pdf) sewing pattern after following directions, carefully measuring yourself and selecting the size only to have it come out way to large or tighter than you wanted? That's because you haven't factored in ease.

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Sewing Glossary - sewing terms explained for the beginner

beginner sewing glossaryThis glossary of sewing terms for the beginner is an A-Z guide that explains many terms, but also includes some tips and tricks that I think you might find handy. The list is a work in progress and I'll add links to tutorials, images and videos when I create them. Let me know in the comments if I missed a crucial sewing term you would like to know about. Continue reading

Tsuno Tie bag sew along

Sew along as we walk trhough all the steps to construct the Tsuno Tie bag. I'm showing all the steps so even a beginner can follow along. If you are a more experienced sewer, speed up the video by using the gear icon to find the speed options or skip ahead. I'll cover the French seams, mitered corners and the double fold hem.

 

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Introducing: Tsuno Tie Bag

Are you a beginner behind the sewing machine? Or are you a more experienced sewer with the stash to prove it?

Look. Don't get me wrong...I'm all for having a stash to shop from, but not in such enourmous amounts that it gives me a sewing block.

Sometimes you just need a fun project for those left over bits 1 yard and 1/2 yard fabric in your stash. You know...those fabrics you love and can't bear to part with, but just don't know what to make?

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