Grade Expectations: Learn How To Grade Patterns

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Learn how to grade any pattern.

You may have noticed that I love vintage sewing patterns. I’ve collected quite a few, and like any true sewist many sit waiting to be put to good use. When shopping for vintage sewing patterns, many times you get what you get. Year after year vintage patterns become increasingly harder to find in any size, let alone the exact size you need.

I have a rule that I’ll only buy a vintage pattern either one size up or one size down from my usual size range. For instance, if I wear a size 12 in vintage I’ll allow myself to buy either a size 10 or a 14. In some cases I’ll go to a 16. Maybe an 18. Honestly, I’m total mush when it comes to buying vintage patterns. Seriously, I’ll buy any size if I love it that much. I have no self control when it comes to vintage sewing patterns.

If I do have a size that’s really large or small, thankfully I can successfully grade the pattern either one size down or up. But, the more sizes you have to grade, the more you need to be extra careful and pay attention to accuracy. Frankly, grading is not one of my favorite things to do. I think it’s a time thing. I’d rather just get to the darn sewing.
Needless to say it’s a skill I could certainly spend some time on . The more I do it, the better and faster I’ll become. Plus, it opens up more possibilities of what I can sew. How about you? Do you know how to grade patterns? Any tips you’d like to offer? Are you interested in learning?

Let me know in the comments section!

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