Are You A Fan Of Digital Sewing Patterns? Let Me Know!

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Learning to use digital sewing patterns

Yay or Nay for digital sewing patterns?

imageplaceholder Jill Case
Online Editor, Sew Daily
SewDaily.com

Question of the day is do you sew with digital sewing patterns? Most of my sewing patterns are from the big four pattern companies with my indie section getting bigger by the day. I do have digital sewing patterns (aka downloadable patterns) but not nearly as many. 

Working with digital sewing patterns is not difficult and I don't mind the taping and cutting out. I just look at it as a part of sewing process. I don't use really complicated digital sewing patterns yet. The e- patterns that I have used are fairly simple with about 40 or so pages to print out. In other words I have not used a digital sewing pattern for say, a wedding gown. That could be kinda crazy!

The negative that I hear most about using digital sewing patterns is the time component. The cutting and taping and using up of printer toner for many totally negate the use of digital patterns. However, if you are still intrigued about using  digital patterns you might try downloading something small, like a craft project or a tote bag. Or look for sewing projects that are simple like a skirt or a tunic type blouse. Accessory patterns are perfect for first time users like this easy metal frame clutch pattern.

Using digital sewing patterns has increased my sewing pattern library as well as introduced me to other pattern makers that are not part of my usual line up. Many indie pattern makers offer hard copy as well as digital in order to appease both, which is always nice. But, either way I hope you try some of these patterns and let me know what you like or dislike about them.

 

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Jill

About Jill

I am the Online Editor for Sew Daily and I am so incredibly excited to meet everyone here on this amazing sewing community!

My first passion is garment sewing, I love vintage sewing patterns and working with knits and silks. I also get very jazzed about sewing pants and love learning couture techniques. What about you? I can't wait to get started finding out more about you and what you like to sew.

24 thoughts on “Are You A Fan Of Digital Sewing Patterns? Let Me Know!

  1. I like digital patterns for stuffed animals and quilts. I still tend to use printed patterns for clothing. It is just so much easier to use the tissue paper instead of taping all those printer pages together.

  2. I like digital patterns for stuffed animals and quilts. I still tend to use printed patterns for clothing. It is just so much easier to use the tissue paper instead of taping all those printer pages together.

  3. I’ve never actually tried a digital pattern for anything, though I’ve got quite a few freebie patterns to try. The problem for me is that we don’t have a working printer (we’ve just moved, too) so that kinda puts a crimp in my sewing plans. Once I do manage to get them printed out, I do plan to try them out and see if it’s any different than tracing regular patterns and using those.

  4. I love digital sewing patterns, especially for clothing. The time I spend taping them together is minimal, and I like how sturdy the printer paper is for making alterations. It’s easier to trace around than tissue on knit fabrics, too. I can easily print out another copy to make a garment in a different size for a gift — or if I’ve just messed something up. And digital files are easier to store! They don’t take up any physical room until it’s time to print them out.

    There’s also the instant gratification angle — no driving to the store, no waiting for the mail.

    There’s no advantage to physical tissue patterns for me, since I almost never just cut them out and use them. I trace off my size from the paper pattern to make alterations, anyway. It’s almost the same time wise.

    I’m a big fan of digital patterns!

  5. I like E-patterns for smaller things. Although, I have been venturing into larger things like a summer dress, lately. What I don’t like is the glitches I have run into. I bought a denim jacket pattern once and I have never been able to down load it.

  6. I like digital patterns – however, if they are in pdf format, you must be careful to make sure when you print them that your settings are full size. Mostly I use digital patterns for small things and my vintage paper patterns for everything else. It is easy to redesign paper patterns so you get a different look.

  7. I subscribe to several sewing magazines and really do not like when the patterns are digital. paper patterns I can keep until they are worn out, but digital depend on me downloading promptly, usually with in a certain time limit… If I keep the magazine, decide to make one of the patterns 6 months (or more) after publication I need to buy the digital pattern -even if I bought the magazine initially, if it is still available… That does not touch on the time and cost of printing and assembling the digital patterns.

  8. I use digital patterns mostly for everything but women’s clothing.
    Almost every kid’s pattern is digital.
    I like the indie choices.
    I print them at work (shhhhhh), otherwise there would be no ink left at home.

    I have had some trouble with downloading some patterns and printing them because of some formatting incompatibility. but overall it has been a good experience and I will probably more and more go toward digital patterns.

  9. I love the fact that I can get a pattern for whatever whenever I want. I love indie patterns, but have always been put off by 7-10 days waiting for the pattern to arrive in the snail mail. Also, I’ve been sewing for some 50+ years and have a whole cabinet full of tissue patterns. I love being able to store patterns for future projects digitally and having them at my fingertips when I want them. I don’t mind the taping, sort of like putting together a puzzle. If it’s a pattern I really like, I trace it out on pattern fabric with my alterations and toss the bulky paper pattern.

  10. I DO NOT LIKE digital patterns or books. You have to print them out on 8×12 sheets of paper and tape it all together. It’s no deal ,doesn’t save anything and a waste of time.

  11. I kind of like them for small projects. But not when I have to print out a bunch of paper. Plus, the thing that I really don’t like about digital sewing patterns is when they charge a lot of money to buy one. It’s almost like buying a paper pattern! And then I need to use my paper and ink! That’s when I really don’t using digital patterns.

  12. i use digital patterns for small items in fact i am looking for a cool tote bag pattern cause i want to make all my family tote bags for Christmas and fill them with goodies 🙂

  13. Given the cost for printing paper (paper and inks) and the value of time (yes, our time has value), I prefer the patterns I purchase. I really don’t want to spend the time printing them, ensuring that they are 100% correct (especially for some areas of the garment patterns). I have software where I can print my own garment patterns, but I still prefer buying them. And, they are always easy to browse through. I seldom think about what I have stored on my computer… which is A LOT.

  14. I use a lot of downloadable patterns for doll clothes and accessories. there are some problems when the people who publish don’t use Craftsy or pdf patterns. not everyone is on twitter or google or whatever other formatts are available I sometimes am vexed by people who expect everyone to the most, latest media access, gramma dosen’t do facebook.

  15. I use a lot of downloadable patterns for doll clothes and accessories. there are some problems when the people who publish don’t use Craftsy or pdf patterns. not everyone is on twitter or google or whatever other formatts are available I sometimes am vexed by people who expect everyone to the most, latest media access, gramma dosen’t do facebook.

  16. Jill, as I have aged and being on my feet for an extended time, I really don’t like dealing with digital patters. There are several patterns I would enjoy making that aren’t available to buy, i.e., several Burda patterns. I would buy the printed pattern but I have opted out of purchasing digital versions.

  17. Jill, as I have aged and being on my feet for an extended time, I really don’t like dealing with digital patters. There are several patterns I would enjoy making that aren’t available to buy, i.e., several Burda patterns. I would buy the printed pattern but I have opted out of purchasing digital versions.

  18. there is no way that I am going to spend time and paper and toner on digital patterns. They may be good for someone who has no access to a fabric store, but not for me.

  19. I have tried a couple of digital patterns in PDF format for reasonably simple tops & skirts and I have found with every one that the match points in the layout and pattern lines do not align in many of the sheets. I have checked and am using the suggested printing settings. Most frustration when it involves curves as I can never be sure when sewing together if it is me or the pattern at fault.

  20. I haven’t used digital patterns much, but i like it. However, I have access to a large plotter at work, so I can print more than 20 inches wide. I’m a newspaper designer, so I also can alter on screen, another reason i like it.

  21. I totally dislike digital patterns and will not purchase them. If the project is small enough that the pattern pieces fit on one sheet, then I don’t mind. All the taping, piecing and use of so much paper and printer ink is just not worth it to me. It’s too bad, though, because I’ve missed out on some really cute patterns that only came in a digital format. I simply won’t buy them.

  22. I truly dislike digital patterns and will not purchase them. I attempted to use them a couple of times and find the endless printing, use of so much paper and printer ink, plus all the piecing and taping is simply not worth it. I would purchase a digital pattern for smaller patterns that will fit on a single piece of paper. It is really too bad because I have missed out on so many cute patterns that only came in digital format.

  23. Not really a fan of digital patterns. I want more info about material required, sizes, etc. I do have digital patterns but mostly for small items such as home decore, purses, bags, hats, etc. These are much more convenient for me to download and print. More than 10 pages to print is just not my thing. But more power to those who do.
    Thanks.

  24. I have several pattern making programs that I use on my PC and do not care for taping sheets together. Too difficult to store after taping and too much trouble to trace off.
    I have access to a large format printer, but the paper and toner are expensive.
    Today’s tissue paper in commerical patterns has gotten so thin, I can hardly unfold it without it tearing.
    Each method has its pros and cons, but I tend to use commerical tissue patterns the most.
    I do have a pattern drafting set of basic re useable slopers that are great, but there are size limitations.
    I have never bought and downloaded a digital pattern.

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