Organizing Patterns

Thank you all for the birthday wishes!

Over the last four years, my pattern stash had become a bit unwieldy for my taste. I had bunches of patterns crammed into those narrow paste board boxes, out of sight, out of mind, as I was beginning to forget what I had packed away.

A few weeks ago, I ran across this helpful tip on Pattern Review: Organizing Your Pattern Stash. The author of the tip, KarmenG, suggested something that made me gasp: separate my patterns and instruction from the envelope!

You see, I’m the kind of person who likes to keep everything together. When I was little, I wouldn’t let my cousins put the wrong clothes on the wrong Barbies. Magic Curl Barbie’s dress could not be put on Great Shape Barbie. That was the way I ran things.

So the thought of separating my patterns from the envelope was a bit disconcerting to me. But my pattern stash was a mess and unnavigable. So I thought I’d give it a try.

First, I bought a pack of page protectors and placed each pattern envelope in a sleeve. (Another tip: I ironed some of my “out of shape” envelopes to flatten them before I placed them in the page protectors.) Second, I sorted each envelope by garment and placed them in a 3-inch binder. I divided my binder into the following categories: Tops, Skirts/Pants, Dresses, Combos/Wardrobe, Jackets/Coats, Costumes, Accessories, and Crafts.

For my actual patterns, I bought gallon-sized Hefty storage bags, hanging folders, and two large crates. I placed each pattern in a storage bag with the instruction sheet facing out so I can clearly identify the pattern number and company. I then filed them in my hanging folders numerically, and placed them in the crates.

The beauty of this system is that I can now conveniently browse through my pattern collection and locate the pattern I wish to use when I am ready.

Here are all of my patterns stacked in the corner, easily accessible.

I’m still working on the Burda WOF jacket. We’ve had snow again! so I get an extra day to work on some sewing. Yay!

Be blessed,

6 thoughts on “Organizing Patterns

  1. Oh, Magic Curl Barbie! Is that the one with those little activator packs? Made her fro turn into a jheri curl? I had one of those.

    I L-O-V-E your pattern organization system. I’m in the process of organizing my crochet patterns and my yarns. My sewing patterns could use some help too. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  2. Isn't it great! I organize my patterns this way also & I love it. I have such a large stash of patterns that it took me awhile but now as I buy new ones it's easy to just store them like this.

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