Fabric Markers

The biggest concern I had in developing pre-cut packs was how to clearly mark the markers, if you get what I mean??  For those that are old hands at sewing, I think it's pretty obvious - for those who are new to sewing... please read on.

The Run Jump Hop Skip Shorts made in denim currently available as a pre-cut pack in the Etsy Stitch it Now Shop.

The Run Jump Hop Skip Shorts made in denim currently available as a pre-cut pack in the Etsy Stitch it Now Shop.

So markers for me are those things on a sewing pattern that tell me what each piece is and where to join or align the pattern pieces - like what is the front and back pocket, matching a sleeve to an armhole; where to sew the faux fly; where to place your pockets on the front or back; where to fold a pleat; etc.  

Pattern pieces are usually numbered on the pattern piece, so you know what you are cutting out. As I am giving you pre-cut pieces I need to be able to signal what piece was what.  And on commercial patterns pocket and hem markers tend to be triangles, other pattern companies use little straight lines.

On the Run Jump Hop Skip Shorts/Pants there are really only a few markers that are really important, they are:

  • the faux fly; and
  • the front and back pockets.

There are other markers, and I only say they are less important, as they are also detailed in the PDF Sewing Instructions.  They are:

  • A legend showing the numbered pieces
  • Waist fold over hem
  • Short / Pant leg hem

So let's talk about how I mark my markers:

Numbered Pattern Pieces:

Because you are receiving a pre-cut pack with the pieces cut out ready to just sit down and sew, I decided that numbering each piece and providing a corresponding legend, allows you to make sure you have all the pieces you need, prior to sewing.  Each piece is numbered with a small round sticker attached to the wrong side of the pattern piece.  It is out of the way of connecting seams, so you don't accidentally sew it to your garment.  It can be easily removed and I suggest you do so before washing - they can permanently leave a sticky residue on your garment.  

Before sewing the garment there is a step in the PDF Sewing Instructions asking you to check you have all the pieces, check them against the diagram and the legend.   Then, as you sew your shorts, the sewing instructions continue to reference the numbered pieces. so you can continue to check you are sewing the right piece at the right time.

A (very bad) photo of the diagram and legend as they appear in the PDF Sewing Instructions.  This diagram shows both the short and pant lengths. The legend refers to the short only as it is from the PDF Sewing Instruction specifically developed for the Denim short pre-cut pack.

A (very bad) photo of the diagram and legend as they appear in the PDF Sewing Instructions.  This diagram shows both the short and pant lengths. The legend refers to the short only as it is from the PDF Sewing Instruction specifically developed for the Denim short pre-cut pack.

Hem Markers:

These markers are signalled by a small nick in the fabric on the outside legs and waist line, to indicate where the hem folds should happen.  If you serge these off whilst sewing up the pattern, no biggie, just check the PDF Sewing Instructions as you sew, they will tell you what the measurements are.

This is the pattern piece showing the short hem markers.  The first marker is 1.5cm (5/8") up from the hemline and the second marker is 2.5cm (1") above the second.  This means you turn the short hem up 1.5cm (5/8") and then 2.5cm (1").  Of course, you should always check the length on your child to allow for their leg length and preferred wearing length, before sewing the final hem in place.

This is the pattern piece showing the short hem markers.  The first marker is 1.5cm (5/8") up from the hemline and the second marker is 2.5cm (1") above the second.  This means you turn the short hem up 1.5cm (5/8") and then 2.5cm (1").  Of course, you should always check the length on your child to allow for their leg length and preferred wearing length, before sewing the final hem in place.

Pocket Markers:

On the Run Jump Hop Skip Shorts / Pants there are both front and back pockets.  To show you where the pockets should be attached, on the front and back pieces, there are either chalk or washable pen marks to indicate where to align the top of the pocket for sewing.  

Note that I use chalk/Saral paper markings on dark fabrics; and washable pen marks on lighter fabrics.  The only downside to using chalk/Saral paper on the darker fabrics is that they can be a little 'fragile' and can wipe away if handled a lot.  I suggest placing a few pins strategically along these markings once you receive your pattern.  Just in case.

The left photo shows the finished front pocket being aligned with the markings on the short front.  The top of the pocket should slot straight into those markings.  You want the pocket to abutt those markings, so you can't see them.  They should align exactly at the top as the short/pant has a foldover waist and the pockets sit just under the finished waist seam, so make sure you don't attach your pocket higher than this marking.   The right photo is the back pocket.  It has two markings that the back pockets should align too.  If you get the top of the pocket aligned with these points, the bottom of the pocket will be right.  Just pin it in place and sew.

The left photo shows the finished front pocket being aligned with the markings on the short front.  The top of the pocket should slot straight into those markings.  You want the pocket to abutt those markings, so you can't see them.  They should align exactly at the top as the short/pant has a foldover waist and the pockets sit just under the finished waist seam, so make sure you don't attach your pocket higher than this marking.  

The right photo is the back pocket.  It has two markings that the back pockets should align too.  If you get the top of the pocket aligned with these points, the bottom of the pocket will be right.  Just pin it in place and sew.

Faux Fly Markers:

I don't know about you but every time I need to sew a faux or even a real fly, I still need to mark it up so I can lazy stitch, oh I mean confidently stitch it up - without fear of getting it wrong!  So below is how I mark my faux fly's when sewing them.

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Mark the wrong side of the fabric:

  • Draw your seam allowance all the way down your front center seam to the end of your crotch.  On the Run Jump Hop Skip Shorts this is a 1cm (3/8") seam allowance.

 

  • Just above your faux fly length marking or stopper, draw a slightly curved line to meet your faux fly flap, drawn on the pattern already, see grey/blue pattern line on the picture at left (has the words 'Fold Here' running along it).

 

  • Continue the line all the way down to meet up with your crotch seam allowance.  Trace this line from the top of your pattern to the end of crotch seam to the wrong side of your pattern.

 

 

 

This is what the wrong side looks like with all the markings on.  

This is what the wrong side looks like with all the markings on.  

The right side faux fly marker ready to be sewn.

The right side faux fly marker ready to be sewn.

Mark the right side of your fabric: 

  • Trace the faux fly flap line onto the right side of your fabric (both pieces),  It's that same grey/blue line we talked about above (next to the 'Fold Here' words).

On the right is how it looks once it is drawn on, we are interested in that dark yellow line at the fly.  

Can you see how the wrong and right sides sort of finish each other??  I hope so, if you are like me, visual and verbal is great but I really only have my 'Aha' moment when actually 'doing' the do of it myself.

That is the overview of how your pre-cut pack will come marked.  Next post we might have a look at the instructions for sewing that faux fly for people, like me, who still need their instructions.  Doesn't matter how many times I sew them, I still need to check my instructions.  

If you would like a pre-cut pack of your own, please visit the Stitch it Now Shop on Etsy.

Happy Sewing!

 

Comment

Deb Cameron

I am a stay at home Mum (SAHM). I have two beautiful boys who are now both at school. This crazy idea has been rattling around in my head since my boys were babes and I learnt all about the power and pleasure of 'nap time'. Oh the things I achieved during those two, sometime three, hour afternoon naps. This is my time to share a dream I have with you and maybe make your nap time a creative powerhouse too! A place where it is handmade with love and unique by you - Welcome!