Updated: Feb 23, 2022
Have you ever pulled a pattern out of your collection only to realize it's already been cut a size you don't want to use this time? Or you go to remake your very favorite dress and can not remember what alterations you made to the pattern? Both of these things have happened to me more times than I can count! Not to mention, I also use traced patterns from magazines frequently, and have a hard time tracking what sizes I have already traced.
I have tried many methods in the past to solve these problems. I have made an index card of every pattern I have and wrote notes on them, sorted them by type and color, and promptly never touched them again. It wasn't convenient to go through my pattern collection, and then go through an index card collection! And it goes without saying that every time there was $1 sale on patterns I failed to make matching index cards. I have printed an index of my magazine patterns and wrote next to them all the sizes I have made. On my pattern envelopes I write the size and fabric that I made each view out of. None of these solutions worked the way I needed them to in order for my sewing to be functional and efficient.
Finally, after way too long, I have come to an efficient and worthwhile solution. I have made pattern cards (for pattern envelopes, traced patterns, and PDF patterns). I am loving how organized it feels and how easily I can make the pattern again without starting at square one each time.
For pattern envelopes, I printed them out 2 to a page so they are the perfect fit to staple to the envelope or stick inside. Now I can keep track of which view I sewed, what fabric I used, changes I made or want to make, and any other important notes.
This has been especially great for my traced patterns. I have years of Ottobre's that I used to make my older kids' clothes a decade ago, and now I am using them again for the little one. I have always felt my magazine pattern organization was pretty on point, but this has made it even better. Especially now that I am sewing for my little nugget who happens to have shorter legs than the average baby, and I can record exactly how my hems should look.
I figured if this solution took me so long to come to, and it has helped me this much- my fellow sewists might also benefit from the the pattern card! The first 10 readers can use the code SEWNOW at checkout to download the Pattern Cards for envelopes, PDFs or traced patterns free!