Sewing Tips: Freezer Paper as Pattern Pieces
Did you know that you can use plain old freezer paper (NOT wax paper and NOT parchment paper) from the grocery store to extend the life of your patterns? With this technique, you can use the pattern over and over and save the original so you can trace off different sizes later (GREAT idea for kid’s patterns). Follow along as I show you how.
This is my new favorite pattern. In fact, it’s one of the few commerical patterns I’ve used and I like it so much I’m using it again! It’s Simplicity 2210, a four panel skirt with an elastic waistband EASY PEASY! You’ll notice that I’ve cut the pieces out to the size I needed, but you actually won’t have to do that (mine just happened to be the largest size, ahem)
Roll out a piece of your freezer paper because you’re going to trace the pattern onto the NOT shiny side of the paper. Uh, oh, my pattern piece was a very tiny bit wider than my freezer paper, NO PROBLEM, I just taped a smaller piece to it. (I save the extra pieces just for that sort of purpose.)
Lay your pattern piece on top of the Freezer Paper (which will henceforth be known as FP) and trace around it. This is a closeup but you can see in the previous image how the entire piece looks.
Notice that I’ve transferred all the notches from the pattern piece and I’ve noted on the FP the name of the pattern and how many pieces to cut of the fabric. That’s SUPER important because someday you might want to make this again and it’s easier than trying to remember.
IF you had to tape a couple of pieces of the FP together, BE SURE to mark where you taped it. You NEVER want to iron over the tape (and you will be ironing very soon.)
Lay the pattern piece on your fabric SHINY SIDE DOWN (you may want to press your fabric first) and using a dry iron (no steam) press the FP down to the fabric. Don’t worry, it’s only a temporary bond, but you can reuse the FP pattern a couple of times.
Using fabric scissors, cut as close as possible to the pattern piece without cutting the FP. Since I needed to cut four pieces, I actually folded my fabric in half and ironed the piece to one side, then cut two at a time.
That’s about it! Transfer the notch marks to your fabric as the pattern specifies. And get to sewin’!
Now here’s a bonus tip. The second piece for this particular pattern is a waistband which is just a rectangle 24″ by 3.5″ Instead of bothering with the freezer paper and trying to cut a perfectly straight line with scissors, I just used my nifty rotary cutter, mat, and ruler. It worked great!
Oh and one more thing, you can store your pattern pieces and the instructions, plus the cover of the pattern in a gallon ziploc bag or even in a notebook with plastic page protectors (depending on the bulkyness of the pattern pieces).
Thanks for sticking with me (haha) for this sewing tips post. Next month, we’ll talk about zippers!